As the four-day weekender bids us farewell, I am throwing my patriotic two cents reet in the faces of republicans and royalists alike to celebrate something that is Great about Britain, other than Union Jack emblazoned apparel and soggy sandwiches which really are just a bit shit. So what? Our FASHWAN duh. Namely, of eras been and gone.
Battersea Park’s Jubilee jubilations were pitted to be the prime spot to cheer and wave along to the flotilla however, the rain convinced me otherwise and instead of whoop whooping over some nondescript river vehicles, I took off to the vintage quarter of the Park’s festival in the hope of lifting my waning and soaked-through, celebratory spirits…
Lifted my spirits were, my sports luxe even more soaked-through than before but forgivingly so as I was to remind myself why I’m such a vintage fan girl in the first place. Copious rails adorned with beautifully heavy silks, furs and velvets hung seeped in decades of history (I let out an audible “in love”), sheltered under mini-marquees and accessorised with their respective representatives, head-to-toe in a uniform akin to their favourite era, sitting poised on an appropriately antique stool smiling tweeily; the real picture of Great British Fashion.
Yet the Great British Vintage Scene is a phrase which is distinctly absent from our vernacular. The High Street is honoured via all manner of award ceremonies and one-off events yet there is lack of equivalents for the old-timers, excluding Vintage Festival and Goodwood of course, which are annual spectaculars that celebrate all that has gone before us. And why? I lament. Be it less mainstream and commercial it is no less worthy of such recognition and basics it is about high time someone did something about it.
I am all too familiar with the scornful expression you’re met with on answering the “OMG where did you get that?” With a: “It’s vintage,” – the “dahaling” optional and dependant on your conversational partner which more often than not correlates with his/hers social class e.g. rah with, chav without and so forth. Vintage has a pretentious stigma which I profusely dispute; anyone can do vintage and the world would be a better place if more did. Ya hear me?
I will and do fly the vintage flag until the cows come home but there’s no convincing some sceptics who are adamant it’s nothing more than plain “granny” (note the distinct absence of the ‘chic’ suffix). In a last ditch attempt to assure these types otherwise I urge you to take a wander down Brick Lane (another audible “in love”) to the Vintage Emporium and Blitz. Then, after you have inhaled, stroked and generally revelled in the years of history, originality and pure love that is sewn into every pore of their garmz ainch(ent), are your grandma prejudices justified.
Vintage is not a trend, it will always be cool. STAT.