How To Shop For Vintage Clothing Online

If you’re limiting your trips outside the house or you just don’t have a shop near you with a good vintage clothing selection, then read this post to find my favorite tips and tricks for scoring great quality and authentic vintage clothing pieces online!

Whether you’re looking to make your wardrobe more eco-friendly, or you just love the vintage aesthetic, buying authentic vintage pieces for your closet has never been easier thanks to the magical world of the internet. Personally, I’m a sucker for anything from the 60’s or 70’s, so shopping flea markets, thrift stores, and vintage shops is one of my all-time favorite hobbies. But what if that’s not an option for you right now?

Here are my top 5 tips for shopping vintage clothing online:


If you’re completely new to vintage shopping and have no idea where to start, your best bet is to start with an accessory. A vintage purse, headscarf, or piece of jewelry can add a lot to a modern outfit with the added benefit of being more durable (usually) than garments. BONUS- you don’t need to worry about whether or not it’s going to fit. Funny story, this purse is actually part of a vintage picnic set (you can find it for sale in my Etsy shop here).


Honestly, I would apply this principle to modern clothing as well. Sizes vary from brand to brand and era to era. Currently, I have anything from an XS to a M in my closet, simply because “size” is just another word for “bullshit”. Look for shops that offer measurements of each garment and double-check your own before committing to the purchase.

*NOTE: Most brands will show measurements as “taken flat” (meaning that they are taken while the garment is laying flat on a surface, not when worn like in the picture below). If this is the case, double the measurement to get the true size. For example, if the waist is 16 inches taken flat, then the garment would fit a 32-inch waist. Get it?


No matter what you’re shopping for, you’re going to want to read the description thoroughly and look for lots of clear, detailed photos. Check that the seller leaves feedback on the condition of the piece, and if any issues are mentioned (like holes, pilling, or stains) make sure there’s an accompanying photo so you can get a clearer idea of what you’re going to receive. If you’re still not sure, check their return or exchange policy before making the purchase, or reach out to the seller to address any concerns you may have.


If the seller notes that a blouse is missing a button or has a small hole and you know it’s outside of your limits to fix it, or if you know you’re not willing to pay someone else to fix it for you, then that piece is a pass. Also, check for care instructions you’re unlikely to follow. For example, if the piece is dry clean only and you know you’re probably going to throw it in the dryer at some point, just leave it. Don’t set yourself up for heartache by making your day-to-day lifestyle have consequences.


What silhouettes do you enjoy wearing? What kind of fabrics do you love for the season? Do you enjoy layering pieces, or do you normally wear singular statement items? Shopping for vintage clothing that fits into your preferences already is a great place to start. Once you become more comfortable with shopping vintage online and find a few favorite retailers, then you can experiment with different colors, styles, and eras with confidence.


There you have it, my tried and true tips for shopping vintage clothing online. Vintage pieces offer an effortless, timeless feel to your everyday aesthetic, so it’s always a great idea to mix these kinds of pieces into your style over time. My most recent vintage purchase is this adorable 60’s wool sweater (found here) and I am head over heels in love with it!

Looking for more fashion tips and tricks? Check out this post to learn how to properly wash, store, and wear your vintage and handmade sweaters to prevent shrinkage and make your winter wardrobe fav’s last longer. Until next time!



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