Retro Fashion: 10 Great Pieces on a Budget

Trends come and go but there’s always place for vintage in our hearts at TBF. Why? Vintage is classic without being boring, quirky without being, well, Lady Gaga. Of course, true vintage can get a little pricey, so we’re all about retro and vintage-inspired. Don’t want to reinvent your entire wardrobe? No problem — leave the head-to-toe vintage for Halloween, and instead punctuate your personal style with retro fashion piece or two. On a budget of course.

Great Retro Fashion Pieces on a Budget

Accent beaded headband

Accent Beaded Headband, $5.80, Forever21

Boring basics, again? Add a cute beaded vintage-y headband and suddenly, tres chic.

Vintage floral stretch bracelet

Vintage Floral Stretch Bracelet, $12.50, WetSeal

Vintage jewelry is never out of style — and especially right now when statement jewelry is de riguer. The best part? Perfect with both the Little Black Dress and a slouchy tee and jeans.

Candy frame coin purse

Candy Frame Coin Purse, $25, Fossil

Not feeling the vintage style for your wardrobe, but still like the idea of a fun retro/vintage piece in your repertoire? This adorable coin purse will make you feel just a tiny bit more stylish every time you feed the parking meter.

Cloche feather and Jeweled hat

Cloche Feather and Jeweled Hat, $16.50, Charlotte Russe

Speaking of hats, while we might not be able to do the veil thing, we most certainly can do the cloche — with a double breasted belted wool coat and boots, it’s almost too easy. Almost.

Floral shannen sunglasses

Floral Shannen Sunglasses, $11, FredFlare

The perfect signature piece? Amazing retro-inspired sunglasses — cause they go with everything, and with a pair like these from FredFlare, you can be Thelma or Louise.

Knit checker cardigan

Knit Checker Cardigan, $28, Twelve by Twelve Forever21

So, if this were 50 years ago, you’d be one of the tough girls huh? Vintage isn’t all about gems and feathers and lace — it’s also about pattern and cut. Enter the checker cardigan — strong pattern, no fuss, but the little flower detail reminds us your a girl without screaming femininity. We like.

Lace shrug

Lace Shrug, $14.99, Charlotte Russe

One of the hardest things about the dress-up season is figuring out what to wear over your dress (without ruining the whole I-dress-like-this-all-the-time illusion). Of course, it’s not just for dress up — this would look super cute over a tank with jeans too. Versatility, of course, is always on trend.

Rosette sleeve top

Rosette Sleeve Top, $28, Twelve by Twelve Forever21

Nothing says vintage quite like floral, but there is s a fine line between trendsetter and tablecloth. As of late, we like to do our vintage florals in embellishment rather than pattern — like cute rosette sleeves. Were this with some skinny dark denim, a cuff bracelet and cute flats for vintage a la 2010.

Something blue earrings

Something Blue Earrings, $12.99, Modcloth

No wedding in your near future? No matter — you can still do the something blue with these sweet but not syrupy vintage-inspired earrings. You could dress em up, but we kinda like the idea of wearing them with a sweater, jeans and booties — effortless is our favorite kind of chic.

Vintage birdcage veil

Vintage Birdcage Veil, $10.80 Forever21

We love a veiled hat, but somehow just can’t quite pull it off without feeling like we’re an extra on movie set (okay, it’s on our bucket list, but still) A veiled, feathered hairclip, however, gives us just the right amount of vintage without the fuss.


Angela is a senior writer who's been hanging around TBF since way back in 2007. When she's not weighing in on the merits of, say, feathers as a fashion statement, Angela works as a bridal consultant in the St. Louis area. She also enjoys sunsets, and long walks in Target.