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Vintage designer clothing: 5 items that never go out of style

The classic buys to shop now that are guaranteed to stand the test of time...

Nina Suess wearing black Chanel leather flap bag and khaki Zara dress on June 16, 2021 in Berlin, Germany. (Photo by Jeremy Moeller/Getty Images)
Orin Carlin
Content Writer
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"The cost-per-wear is actually very low." If you hear these words escape from your mouth, it's probably time to admit shopping defeat and step away from the credit card. Right? Wrong.

With many of us now making a conscious shift towards making more sustainable style choices, investment dressing should be high on your radar.

It's not about making a random splurge on one item that you simply cannot live without, rather it's about taking the time to understand what your wardrobe is missing and how one piece can give you an instant style boost, time after time. When it comes to shopping for classic styles, a vintage piece could be the perfect way to feel that you're making a solid investment.

Where to buy classic vintage pieces? 

When it comes to buying vintage designer, it's a good idea to keep an open mind. Next time you're trawling through a second-hand clothing shop, you may well strike gold and uncover a hidden gem (we've found nine of the best in London).

Or, if you'd prefer to shop from the comfort of your own home, there are some brilliant online websites.

A classic piece must be timeless and ultra-wearable, and to give you a helping hand in the matter, Hello! Fashion has picked out five buys that will never go out of style.

How we chose:

We chose accessories that have proven they withstand trend cycles and have cemented their status as icons in the fashion sphere. We've found a mixture of items from bags to coats, pre-loved vintage gems to ready-to-wear pieces. As these are designer pieces they're quite the investment, but we've tried to find items to suit a range of budgets.

  • The Bag That Goes With Everything

    Timeless Vintage Double Flap Bag Medium 11.12


    The aptly-named Chanel Classic Flap bag debuted in 1983, inspired by Coco's 2.55 Flap Bag from the 1950s. Karl Lagerfeld reworked the design, changing the Mademoiselle lock to the iconic interlocking CC clasp. Wear it as the perfect crossbody or over your shoulder, if you can get your hands on one of these much sought-after bags, it would be the ideal vintage heirloom.

  • The Go-To Trench

    One-off Vintage Burberry Inside-Out Trench


    When the clock strikes midnight on the first of March every year, if you listen very carefully you can actually hear the Burberry trenches flapping in the wind, preparing to clothe the backs of every fashion lover for the next couple of months in their attempts to nail "transitional dressing". Burberry's iconic Honey shade goes beautifully with every skin tone – shopping around for a vintage version of this coat is a great way to own this classic, but with some unique detailing.

  • The Timeless Bracelet

    Love Bracelet


    When Aldo Cipullo created the Cartier Love bracelet in New York in 1969, no one could have predicted how popular the luxury bangle would become. Inspired by American hardware stores, the bracelet was a firm favourite of Elizabeth Taylor, and is also well-loved by plenty of modern icons, including Kylie Jenner and Angelina Jolie.

  • The Whimsical Scarf

    Carre 90 scarf 'Les Trophees' Print Scarf


    Granted, wearing a silk scarf wrapped around your head while cruising in a classic convertible á la Grace Kelly is hard to pull off if your daily commute sadly doesn't include the vintage car, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't invest in a Hermés scarf. There are so many beautiful prints to choose from and a chic scarf is such a versatile item, whether you wear it in your hair, around your bag or tied under the neck while romping about the countryside like the Queen.

  • The Classic Black Corset

    Velvet Corset

    Vivienne Westwood

    Legendary designer Vivienne Westwood is known for her signature corset, and for good reason. The fitted bodice has been a key player since way before the days of Bridgerton, would you believe it, and will work perfectly dressed up with high-waisted wide-leg trousers and platform heels.

Why you should trust me:

Orin Carlin is Hello! Fashion’s SEO Content Writer. Promising to leave no stone unturned in the name of fashion and beauty journalism, she is the proud creator of our ‘Try The Trend’ series. With a particular interest in formula innovation, microtrends, royal and bridal beauty, perfume, rituals, treatments, fashion history and vintage icons, she can either be found interviewing major industry names (previous subjects include Georgia May Jagger, Mary Greenwell and Sam McKnight) or scouring the internet for must-have pieces. It's not just a job; it's a personal quest to unearth noteworthy pieces that resonate with style and beauty enthusiasts.

HELLO!'s selection is editorial and independently chosen – we only feature items our editors love and approve of. HELLO! may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. To find out more visit our FAQ page.

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