While “vintage” is commonly used to refer to all old clothing, items a century old or more can be considered antique, while those at least twenty years old are vintage. Retro, short for retrospective, or “vintage style,” usually refers to clothing that imitates the style of a previous era. Reproduction, or repro, clothing is a newly made copy of an older garment. Clothing produced more recently is usually called modern or contemporary fashion.
There are times when discovering vintage clothing, other variations of antique, retro, repro type clothing gets blended into the mix… sizes are often hard to define since the age of the garment, designer, American or European manufacturing, and wear and tear or shrinkage, can affect the current size of the garment.
In the United States, due to changes in clothing sizes, vintage sizes are often smaller than the corresponding contemporary size. For example, a garment from the 1970s labeled as Medium (M) might be similar in size to a 2010s Extra Small (XS). As obesity (more than 20% over their ideal weight) was relatively uncommon prior to the 1980s, larger sizes are typically rare. Vintage sewing patterns offer an option for those who want a historically accurate garment but cannot find one in their size.
Serendipity of Litchfield offers a variety of sizes in their vintage collections and has contemporary clothing in large sizes to accommodate most body types. If you can’t seem to find what you are looking for, please inquire, and Serendipity will try to find it for you.