Vintage Plaid Dress

How to Recognize Quality in Vintage Clothing

When looking at vintage clothing there are a few clues the piece can reveal to let you know it has been constructed with care and quality. 

First, when there is a pattern or print the seams will match.  See above how the plaid is connected line by line.  I was in the middle of hemming the dress due to the school teacher length it had on it before, so it is pinned here and not quite finished, but the lines are still perfect.  The detail in matching seams  indicates the garment was created with a great deal of thought and planning so that the seams did not appear haphazard. 

Second, the material used, if you can find a tag on the garment, should hopefully not be acrylic as it pills like nothing else after a few wears.  Cotton, Polyester, Viscose/Rayon (which wrinkles easily) and of course silk are preferred fabrics. 

Third, look for flaws that can be hidden due to poor lighting in cute vintage stores.  Look specifically at the seams and check the stitching to make sure it is secure or if it is not that  it can be repaired easily.   The dress above met all those criteria and I happily marched home with it, so it could be admired once again!  Happy shopping!

Dress: Vintage and altered, Goldmine Vintage $30
Shirt: Pink Striped Gap Shirt (old), $20
Shoes: Kate Spade via Ebay, $30 similar here

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