Friday, March 21, 2008
VINTAGE OR ANTIQUE?
I love antiques and vintage things as much as I love tea. I'm not sure which I love the most. Actually, I think I can afford to love them equally because there is no compromise. They're in completely different "enjoyment departments," thank God; one you can drink and enjoy (or sip and savor) and the other you can look at, enjoy, and collect.
I have no idea what caused me to want to know Webster's definition of the two words (antique and vintage), but I did. I knew there was a difference, but I hear people using the words interchangeably ( I may be guilty, at some point, of doing it myself), and I wanted to clarify. I guess this all hit me when I was out looking during my Friday Fun Day with my family, and we stopped at little places along the way of getting to the actual errands we were supposed to be running, that had sweet little reminders of old and such. We also stopped at a friend's, and her house is wonderfully decorated with whimsical things and filled with antiquity. I love it. She had some vintage but more antiques than anything. What do I mean?
Webster describes antiques as "something of ancient times; ancient; old; a piece of furniture, silverware, etc. made in a former period, generally more than 100 years old." The last definition here is the key definition. Actual antiques should be things that are at least 100 years old, so some things in an antique store aren't actually antique, they're more vintage than anything. And what does vintage mean? Well, Webster describes this as "representative of or dating from a period long past (vintage clothes, etc.), or the type or model of a particular year or period (a vintage car)." The funny thing is, Webster's first definitions for the word 'vintage' have more to do with the crop or yield of a particular vineyard or grape-growing region in a single season, so really vintage in some circles could conjure up a whole different image than what we typically think of.
Either way, I'm nuts about antiques and vintage articles. I love it whether it's just of recent years gone by or it's more than 100 years old. I have a friend who owns a vintage clothing store and I can literally spend hours in this store looking around and trying on, whether I purchase something or not. I have a few things I've purchased from her over the years, and my husband just loves to see me in vintage clothing. This stuff is not "old" or "outdated" to him. He loves to see vintage clothing come alive in the 2000's. He likes to see me modernize the old look or be brave enough to wear it in our modern time and set my own trend. I've always been different and I love to wear these fine articles of clothing that once looked so great on women from decades ago. I may not do the clothes as much justice as these women, but I wear them anyway.
Anyhooty, if you like old stuff or things from the old days, go antiquing and vintage shopping, and no matter what name is on the door, you'll know the difference:)!