A look into vintage fashion at Michigan

‘I was just naturally drawn to things from the 1950s’

When looking out over your typical Michigan lecture hall, it’s easy to spot the popular clothing trends. Hunter boots and a puffy vest are the fashion staples for many Umich girls, fitted khakis the staple for many guys. But with the aid of the internet and local vintage stores like The Getup Vintage on State Street, there are some Umich students who are throwing it back to the days of our parents and grandparents — and looking good doing it.

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Lindsey styling a 1950s sorority button down

The unique style alternative that vintage offers appeals to many Michigan students, like Onaca Bennett, a junior majoring in Linguistics, who says she enjoys “feeling feminine.”

“I feel that vintage fashions really bring that feeling out for me,” Bennett said. “My favorite piece at the moment is probably a long-sleeved, checkered black and green mod dress. People always say I remind them of Twiggy in it.”

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Coco, a former employee of The Getup, rocking some vintage threads

Another Michigan student, Kamsy Anyachebelu, is also drawn to vintage fashion. “I like vintage style because I feel like it has a certain aesthetic and is very different from what everyone else is wearing,” she said. “You’re really lucky if you snag a cool piece.”

Miranda Lepek, a senior studying Civil Engineering, loves vintage fashion because the pieces are more tailored and fitted than what you find nowadays. “I also like all the cool prints and the aspect of being able to dress like your role models,” she said.

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Lindsey Leyland, one owner of The Getup Vintage, said her origins in vintage clothing began in her childhood.

“My dad would give us each $50 and we would go to Salvation Army. I was just naturally drawn to things from the 1950s,” she said. The Getup’s location on State Street and friendly staff make it the go-to vintage store for Michigan students, like Lepek, who gushes that The Getup is her favorite vintage boutique in Ann Arbor.

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Aside from the unique style vintage affords, Leyland and her co-owner Kaylan Mitchell said there are other, more practical benefits of buying vintage.

“You think about the fashion you buy now and they’re just throwaway clothes,” Leyland said. “A vintage dress from the 50s is the quality equivalent of a couture dress now. We charge around $50-$60 for a dress from the 50s, [while] a couture dress is hundreds of dollars more and the quality is the same.”

Lindsey and Kaylan after a fashion show at The Getup

Lindsey and Kaylan after a fashion show at The Getup

Leyland also mentioned that vintage fashion is a great way to preserve history. “Every cycle comes back around in fashion. You look at Vogue [magazine], and Prada and Chanel are both doing 1970s! When you come in here, you can find that couture look by mixing your newer clothing with vintage.”

If you’re interested in quality, unique clothing to make you stand out around campus, you might want to consider experimenting with vintage fashion.

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Vintage menswear

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