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March 22, 2016

10 Vintage Fashion Rules From Yesterday That Still Apply Today

There's no doubt about it: our grandma's generation was always one step ahead in the style stakes. Here are 10 fashion rules from yesterday that still apply today.

1. Dress to impress on every occasion.

These days, dress code is something people take very lightly: but in your grandma's day and age, dressing up was taken very seriously. "The priorities were different back then," explains Mad Men's costume director, Janie Bryant. "I do love that about the period when people did dress for occasions. You'd dress for the theater, the grocery store, for dinner," she says. "The priority today is more about comfort than it is glamour."

2. Fashion happens four times a year, style is inherent.

Although fashion today is largely driven by trends, your grandma's era was more about timeless style. "You have to interpret what's hot to make it work on yourself," says Rachel Zoe, celebrity stylist. "If tweed suits are in but you're not a suit kind of girl, wear the jacket with jeans and a pair of Converses. The idea is that you wear it the way that becomes the most you."

3. Red lipstick will brighten any outfit.

It's amazing how a slick of red lipstick can instantly lift your whole look. You'll notice that most grandmas never leave the house without it. "It's an elemental, visceral colour - a reminder of what's inside us," explains Dick Page, celebrity make-up artist and creative director for Shiseido, of this timeless trend. "I think red lips are symbolic of female strength."

4. Wear the right underwear for your dress.

Underwear is probably the last thing you think about when getting dressed right? But, according to Bryant, it should be one of your top priorities. "I think that, for a woman, back in the 60s, it was a requirement that you wore your foundations. A lot of ladies wouldn't think about going out of their house without their girdles," Bryant says.

5. Look in the mirror and take one accessory off before you leave the house.

While we'll happily shun the rule that your shoes and bags must match at all times, your grandma makes a good point when she says to keep accessories to a minimum. Overload on earrings, bracelets and a necklace and you'll end up looking more like a Christmas tree. Instead, choose key pieces, such as a cocktail ring or a string of pearls, to dress up your outfit.

6. The tailor is your friend.

How often have you bought something straight off the rack and thought, "this would be great, if only it was a cm shorter/longer/more to the right" and then never bothered to do it? The tiniest amount of tailoring can make a huge difference - just ask your grandma, who would have had most of her wardrobe specially fitted.

7. Details matter.

Gone are the days when you could wander into a store solely dedicated to the art of the button. "During that period, there were definitely attention to detail with the care, right down to how a buttonhole was made," says Bryant.

8. Hats aren't just for the races.

While you might feel ridiculous wearing a hat anywhere but the racetrack, it was once a staple in your grandma's wardrobe. Take her cue and try it out for yourself: you'll be amazed at how it can instantly dress up any outfit.

9. Silhouette is key.

The female shape was celebrated in your grandmas era: the hourglass was the silhouette du'jour. Translate this trend to today by looking for nipped in waists and A-line skirts.

10. Your hair is as important as your outfit.

We bet you've never seen a picture of your grandma with a topknot. That's because hair was considered the crowning touch to an outfit: make it yours by running a brush through it every now and again. Also, dry shampoo is your friend.

(This original article was published on Marie Claire here)


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