Finding Your Inspiration for Vintage Style

“Finding Your Inspiration for Vintage Style”

I hope I find you well!

Finding Your Inspiration for Vintage Style

Trying to find exactly what style or era you enjoy most can be challenging, and can seem unnecessary. Let me reassure you that finding your personal style, a style you are fond of, with your inspirations, is completely necessary. Necessary to help you portray your inspirations, personality and interests. These reasons of which you can read more on here. But also for the reasons of saving you from regretting purchases and wasting your hard-earned money.

Knowing your inspiration, and desired favorite style, is a bit like having a plan. When you have a plan, you’re less likely to make mistakes because you have guidelines to follow. Let your inspiration be your guidelines, (guidelines, not the rule. You should be able to express your vintage style however you want).

In order to really understand and/or unearth your inspiration for your personal vintage style, or indeed, even determine whether or not your desired style is “vintage” inspired, I’ve created a questionnaire for you to complete. For this, you may want to set up a layout on paper, a “mood-board” of sorts. Recording your answers is a good way to be able to look back on your style and inspiration. It reminds yourself of what you like so as not to make any expensive purchases you may regret, and it will allow you to physically revise if and when your style changes, so that you may keep track of your progress and journey. I myself keep a Vintage Journey Journal.

Finding Your Inspiration for Vintage Style Questionnaire

The few questions I feel you should ask yourself when determining your inspiration for vintage style follow as such:


1. Who do you admire/look up to that is a present figure(s) in your life? (Who is your “hero”?)

-Why do you look up to this/these person/people?

-What aspect and pieces from their style have you always admired?

2. What famous figures have you looked up to throughout your life, or still do to this day?

-Other than clothes, what about this person do you admire?

-Now, what particular aspects or pieces from the style or on-screen outfits do you admire?

3. Which movies did you watch, or even enjoy watching as a kid?

-What were the styles of the costumes?

-What time period might the setting have been in?

4. What titles did you read when you were young(er)?

-What from these books drew you to them?

-Is there a common theme throughout the books you read?

5. What hobbies do you have/activities do you enjoy?

-Is there a stereotype of clothing style that is associated with these hobbies?

6. Which time periods are you most interested in/are your favorite?

-What pieces, trends or characteristics are associated with these time periods?

7. What traits in others do you most admire/wish you had?

-What traits and characteristics do you want to improve and/or cultivate?

-Do your clothing inspirations portray these adjectives?

Observations to Make When Finding Your Inspiration for Vintage Style

Once you’ve completed answering the questions to aid in finding your inspiration for vintage style, I want you to take note of any repeat answers and trends from answers for questions #1-6. These likely make up your leading or most prominent vintage clothing inspirations. Those inspirations, I think, should be considered when creating your core or signature style of your vintage wardrobe. Though take into account all aspects of your inspiration when it comes to your wardrobe overall.

Also consider the general air about any styles or aspects that you’re considering incorporating into your wardrobe. This is where you must take into account the answer to question #7. These are the adjectives that you either want prominent, or want to work on cultivating. Let this pertain especially to your day to day garb.

You must be aware that there is a message that is sent to the general public by the clothes you choose to wear. Ensure that the message being sent represents you and your values, and portrays the traits of you of which you wish highlighted.

Then, use your vintage clothing inspiration to pinpoint particular eras and styles. When you find eras and styles that you feel speak to your personal interests, lean into them. Always have your inspirations circling your head when cultivating your wardrobe. This is what makes your signature style.

You want to be careful not to be engulfed by any one of your inspirations. It is especially important, I think, to be aware of not letting any one person influence you. I go a bit more in depth on this subject in another Blog Post.

Determining How to Incorporate Aspects of Your Inspiration

You now have used your inspiration to identify the styles, eras, and general trends throughout those eras. What you must do now, is determine how to incorporate aspects of styles that inspire you in what you wear. A way to help you is if there is a style you enjoy but can’t quite see yourself sporting it in its entirety as your signature vintage look. Or perhaps the particular style you enjoy doesn’t “send the right message” or represent you as well as another would. In doing this, you’ll be able to have some part of your inspiration without taking on all of the undesired aspects of dressing in accordance to a different era.

For instance, the Tudor Elizabethan Era is a part of my vintage-style inspiration. A particular aspect from this era I enjoy: Ruffs. Ruffs were generally worn as a show of power and status, the bigger the ruff, the higher the position. The problem with that is it seems a bit impractical in this day and age. I have a partner, house and job I must tend to, (and have no servants to tend to these things for me). My ruffs would only get in the way.

My solution? I’ve found a knit/sweater that has a detachable ruff-like lace collar. It incorporates my inspiration of vintage style and resembles the piece of which I’d actually like to wear. It is practical, and in line with the desired portrayal of myself, in my opinion. “Sophisticated and patient”, (I hope. I expect there may be some differing opinions here).

Finding Your Inspiration for Vintage Style|Ardently Ana
Tudor/Elizabethan fashion is one of my foremost clothing inspirations. So as you can imagine, I was very happy to find this jumper with a detachable collar resembling a ruff.

Express Yourself as You Wish

Though always keep in mind it’s okay to have outfits that embody an era or style that has seized your inspiration. I’d even encourage it. When it comes to more archaic eras, I find particularly that historical accuracy is a welcomed and refreshing thing. Though is is true for any time period, really. There really are no rules when it comes to your vintage style. Express yourself as you wish! The goal is to honor your inspirations, and how you do so is your prerogative.

            In knowing and recognizing what is an inspiration for you, and what your interests are, not only will you spare yourself regrets and money wasted, you’ll also be able to stay true to your own personal vintage style. I hope this rendered helpful in sparking some inspiration, or at least the recognition of it. And please do let me know of your conclusions! I would be most interested to see if I can find familiar notes of inspiration betwixt us!



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