Category Archives: FAQ

What’s the Difference Between Retro and Vintage?

In defining clothing, there is a difference between retro and vintage.  Retro is distinguished from vintage as new items that are created in the style of, or are inspired by fashions of the past, but are newly produced.


Vintage Baseball Jacket from AMERICANA


When an item that borrows from an old style is first sold as new, it is indeed defined as retro. Once these items are worn, time moves on and if their style and value are maintained, then they may be eventually defined as vintage.


Retro Baseball Jacket from DePalma - Photo via


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What Does “Vintage” Mean? The Definition of Vintage Clothing

What is vintage clothing?

Vintage clothing is defined as previously-owned clothing, that with age, looks better and maintains style.

Time is not the only criteria used to define vintage, but rather other elements such as enduring style, perceived quality and accrued value.

Vintage clothing usually comes from a different era, but the definition should not be confined only in years.

Why call some used clothes “vintage”?

In fashion, we take the term vintage from the culture of wine.  Much like you can have a great vintage wine from a few years back, so too can you have a fantastic piece of vintage clothing that is not technically that old.  Like wine, vintage clothing gets better, intensifies in quality and gains value with age.

Some pieces of clothing, that are rare simply because of their age, often transcend the definition of vintage and move into the category of antique or even historical artifact.

The value of these items illustrates that with time, vintage clothing can become rare and therefore more sought-after and expensive as a result.


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Can Anyone Wear Vintage Clothing?

Of course! People who wear vintage clothing can represent any type of person in the general population.  However, people who wear vintage, either a single piece in an outfit or head-to-toe, usually have an interest in fashion and want to create their own individual style.

Americana Girls Mixing Vintage With Contemporary Fashion

All of us here at AMERICANA have been wearing & collecting vintage clothing long before there was even the term “vintage.”  We’ve always had fun hunting for particular items which stood the test of time in style and quality, or which were unique to wear with contemporary items.

Dating an item & allowing that to be the most important determining factor of whether it was acceptable for our wardrobes or not was never the litmus test for our vintage style.

Gina Americana in Head-to-Toe Vintage



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Can Vintage Clothing Be Recycled or Re-Sold?

Sure! Unless you spend a fortune on unique designer pieces, how many pieces of new clothing can you expect to keep their value?  If the item is cared for by the new owner, it can be re-used or re-sold once again.

Although not every vintage garment is sought-after, there is a collectible market for vintage clothing. Many pieces accrue value with time.  Because of these reasons, wearing vintage clothing is always a win-win situation.

Buying vintage is money well spent.


Invest in a unique piece of vintage American Clothing

AMERICANA Classic Vintage Online Shop Opens Later This Month

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Is Wearing Vintage Clothing Good For The Environment?

Absolutely!  Vintage clothes are recycled items that are given a new life. Plus the new owner gets a a jolt of fashion freshness into their wardrobe.

Wearing vintage is a small contribution you can make toward improving the environment, while feeling good AND looking good at the same time.

The positive environmental factor is one of AMERICANA’s favorite things about our  awesome vintage clothing!

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How To Remove The Smell From Vintage Clothing

Do you love vintage clothing, but you just can’t stand that musty smell that goes with them?  No problem!  Removing the smell from vintage clothes is simple.

If the vintage item is washable, pour a cup of white vinegar into the washing machine, or into the tub if the item should be hand washed.

If the item is dry clean only, put the vintage garment into a confined sealed space, such as the bathroom.  Add 20% white vinegar and 80% water to a humidifier or other steamer.  Turn on the steamer and put the garment near the steam to get the full effect.

After washing or steaming, allow the vintage item to dry in sunlight or in a well-ventilated room. The vinegar smell should evaporate within 24 hours.

Here at AMERICANA Classic Vintage, we are vigilant about the care of our vintage pieces.  All of our items are professionally steamed using natural elements such as vinegar, to clean the garment, remove the smell and bacteria and brighten the colors.

AMERICANA‘s vintage clothing is clean, has no unwanted smells and looks fresh!


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Are There Trends in Classic American Vintage Clothing?

A Baseball Jacket from AMERICANA

Classic American clothing items will always find their way into both new fashions globally as well as being a mainstay of vintage clothing.  That is because the timeless style of these items will always be in fashion and look great on anyone in any decade.

What we love most about the clothing we sell is when people re-mix the classics to constantly create new looks.  These classic American pieces have been blended with new fashions for generations to create new styles that reflect changing attitudes in society.

Photo via Street Etiquette

Here at AMERICANA, we fully embrace  all interpretations or creations of  new fashions that incorporate classic pieces of American vintage clothing to reflect a new style, attitude and rhythm of life. We love to see both old school preppies and new trads, rockabillies and psychobillies, new and old school hip-hop styles and everything else that makes classic American fashion look good!

Black Ivy - Photo via Street Etiquette


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