Wat is nu vintage? De Whoppah guide to vintage shopping

The Whoppah guide to vintage shopping

What is vintage? And what exactly do you mean by that? Is it not "just" secondhand? What makes it different from Mid Century Modern and Retro? These are questions that we receive regularly. Understandable! There is a proliferation when it comes to the use of the word vintage. That is why we are happy to help you in this blog with our view on and tips for vintage furniture shopping.

Between 30 and 100 years old

The term "Vintage" originally comes from Vintage cars and Vintage wine. In wine, it refers to wine made from grapes picked in a specific season. For Vintage cars this means a car that is at least 20 years old. In short, the term Vintage is specific to the period to which it refers.

To understand whether, a desk is vintage, it is therefore important to look at the period in which it is made. A piece of furniture that is a minimum of 30 and a maximum of 100 years old is classified as vintage. We label furniture that is more than 100 years old as Antiques and furniture from after the 80s as Retro. A distinction is made between new vintage: 1950-1980 and "older" vintage 1920-1950. Easy to follow still, correct?

From Art Deco to Minimalism

"But what about design styles such as Art Deco?" Good question! The period 1920-1980 is characterised by multiple design styles. Art Deco (1920-1940) Mid Century Modern (1935-1980) and Minimalism (from 1960). Vintage therefore represents multiple design styles.

A small side step for the enthusiast. Art Deco represents modernism combined with daily glamour and elegance. This interior style was strongly determined by clean lines, fuss-free angular shapes, bold colours and stylish patterns such as zigzag lines and optical figures. For extra glamour, decorations and ornaments with metal surfaces were used. The Mid Century Modern era, after the Second World War, stands for a combination of usability, optimism ('50) earthiness ('60) and earthy tones and materials ('70) and brings an ode to Scandinavian design. Call it a reaction to the decadence and gilded decorations of interior design and architecture up to the 40s, if you want. Because at the time of creation, a modern mid-century decor was a complete refutation and restart of the senses.

Typical of that period

Vintage furniture can therefore represent different styles. But watch out! Being manufactured between 1920-1980 makes the furniture not yet vintage. No no, in order to label the item with the term Vintage, the piece of furniture must also be characteristic of the style of that period. A vintage sideboard, for example, does not necessarily have to come from a famous designer or manufacturer, but it must have the characteristics of that era.

More popular by the day

You see less and less vintage pieces that are well maintained as time goes by. Meanwhile, vintage furniture and design are becoming more popular worldwide, including in Asia. Not surprising, because you bring a unique piece of furniture into your home that often gives a lot of character to your interior. In addition, it can also be a good investment. Always pay attention to the condition of the item, obviously. This results in, for obvious reasons,  a vintage chair of 60 years old that is no longer in new condition. But that's okay. The state may best suit the age. On Whoppah you can shop a wide selection of Vintage furniture. From Mid-Century Modern dining room chairs to Art Deco lamps. And if you have any questions, please contact us.


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