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Recycling vintage trends


Teens are finding outfit inspiration in their grandparents closets.

Every era brings with it a wave of new fashion, and while most teens are gawking over trends like camo pants and halter tops, a rising number of youth are turning back the clock and reviving “dead looks”. Teens with a taste for the eclectic are leaving the big brand clothing stores behind and raiding the messy isles of Goodwill instead. More people are resurrecting  old trends like butterfly clips and low rise jeans, or rummaging through their grandparents drawers to find a new top. To those recycling fashion, someone saying “OMG her outfit makes her look like a grandma” is now a compliment.

This revival isn’t just limited to clothes either; high schoolers have even taken hold of older forms of photography like film and Polaroid. Teens interest in vintage photography has lead some companies like Kodak and Fuji Film to be saved. “We’re seeing film growth of 5% year-on-year globally,” says Giles Branthwaite, the sales and marketing director at Harman. “Our professional film sales have been increasing over the last two or three years,” confirms Dennis Olbrich, president of Kodak Alaris’ photo chemicals and film division.

These outfit choices aren’t just a stylish addition, but a cost effective one too. Buying even one item from a store like Urban Outfitters or Hollister can take a toll on anyone’s bank account, but twenty dollars and some determination can leave you with a perfect outfit from just about any thrift store.“I’m able to buy four pieces of clothing, instead of just one” said avid thrifter Cassidy LeClair who draws inspiration from 50’s style fashion.

Whether it’s the disorderly racks of clothes, association with being “unclean”—which is just flat out wrong—, or the fear of being mocked, there is something intimidating about a thrift store, but according to LeClaire if you “always look at [the clothes] with a nice perspective and if you look hard enough, you’ll surely find something.” Whether it be a vintage red leather belt or a 60’s biker jacket there is bound to be something in any thrift store that anyone can fall in love with.

With all of the pros of recycling fashion aside it boils down to simply being a creative way of self expression. “If I buy clothes from local stores, I’d look like everyone else” said LeClair. “Thrift shopping let’s me find vintage treasure and stand out in my own quirky way.”

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