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Reviewed by Lizzie Bramlett – The Vintage Traveler

Collector’s Guide to Vintage Fashions Identification and Values
by Kristina Harris
(Collector Books ISBN 1-57432-096-3) Buy Now

This book is a basic how to collect vintage clothing primer. The author discusses the various areas of collectible clothing and she addresses the steps involved in building a collection of antique and vintage clothing. The book has many illustrations with prices given for the items illustrated.

The most important thing to remember about this book is that it was written for collectors, not necessarily for wearers, of vintage clothing. A person who is looking for information about the styles of the past because she or he is wanting to fit a few retro pieces into the wardrobe needs to look elsewhere for that information.

This book is more about how to build a collection, and Kristina Harris gives suggestions on everything from how to buy at auction to caring properly for old clothing to keeping accurate records of your vintage finds. To me, this is the best part of the book.

There is very little information on actual vintage styles, and what’s there is very loosely organized. The photos are beautiful and most of the clothing illustrated predates 1920. Many of the illustrations are old fashion plates, which may appeal to some, but I prefer to see actual garments. Overall, I’d say that best customer for this book is one who has some experience in collecting vintage fashion, but who needs a bit of advice on how to organize and care for a growing collection.

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