There are so many great vintage looks that are perfect for Halloween. But it can be almost impossible to find those cute vintage pieces in plus sizes. Have you ever wondered why it’s so difficult to find great vintage clothes in larger sizes? After all it’s not like body diversity only started happening in the last ten years. Women have always had a wide range of body types, so why is it so hard to vintage clothing that isn’t tiny? Well according to this article from Racked there are some pretty interesting reasons why great vintage pieces don’t seem to come any bigger than a modern size eight.
One of those reasons is something called survival bias. The theory behind survival bias is that people only keep certain items of clothing, usually clothing that they love and that fits really well. So when people would sell off or get rid of their vintage clothing the only clothing they kept were the pieces that were the best they had. The rest of it ripped or got worn out and was eventually just thrown away. And since most plus size women in past decades had to make their own clothes those clothes didn’t survive the selection process and were tossed out. So today only the smaller or straight size vintage clothes remain.
That’s right, in past decades plus size women had to make their own clothes. Starting around the WWII era fashion designers and stores totally ignored the plus size market and only sold clothes for smaller sizes. With no stores carrying larger clothing women were forced to make their own clothing. And that trend continued until the 80s, when some designers and stores started finally carrying clothes in larger sizes. Most plus size women today know the pain of trying to find on-trend fashion in larger sizes but imagine not being able to find clothes at all that fit you in stores. Plus size women in the past had to be talented and creative in order to make their own fashion forward clothing. And if you want to create some great vintage looks for Halloween but you can’t find the right vintage pieces in larger sizes to make those looks a reality you will also have to be creative and resourceful. Here are a few tips from vintage experts to help you recreate a vintage look but using today’s modern clothing that is easier to find:
Focus On The Silhouette
If you want to create a glam 40s evening look with a long satin gown or if you love the pinup girl look from the 50s and you want to create Halloween costumes that recreate those looks focus on the silhouette and not the clothing itself. What’s iconic about those looks, or other vintage looks like the narrow hipped 20s flapper look, is the silhouette that those clothes created. So take advantage of today’s modern more comfortable shapewear to create the silhouette of the vintage look you love and don’t worry if you have to wear modern clothing that is made to look vintage. If you get the silhouette right the look will still pop.
Look For Vintage Patterns
If you do know how to sew, or you know someone who does, the best way to get authentic vintage looks is to find vintage patterns. Many vintage patterns do come in large sizes or plus sizes because plus size women had to sew their own clothing. And even if a pattern that you like doesn’t come in the right size you can always resize the pattern yourself with a little help from a pattern maker or some websites devoted to pattern making. Vintage patterns can often be found in vintage shops or on websites dedicated to vintage clothing. Your mom or your grandmother also might have a stash of vintage patterns just waiting for you to use. There are also modern sewing patterns that are made to look like vintage clothes and those you can find at any sewing or fabric store.
Rework Regular Clothing
Another way to get clothes that look vintage but fit well is to take existing clothing and add vintage elements. Vintage trims can be purchased on sites like Etsy and from vintage sellers. You can also add appliques, beading, lace and other embellishments to take a piece of modern clothing and give it the vintage look that you want for Halloween.