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Urban Renewal

Monday, 28 July 2008

I usually walk past the Urban Renewal section of Urban Outfitters, thinking it is vintage stuff, which is not really my thing (not unless they come from a member of my family anyway). At the back of my head, I'd always wondered exactly how they got so many vintage items of the same style in different sizes together in one place. I mean, aren't vintage items supposed to be unique? But I'd never really been interested enough to read the fine print on their website and find out how. It wasn't until my friend mentioned it the other day that I realized what it was. Apparently what they do is collect vintage clothes/fabric and put them together to form new, more updated clothes. That is how they come up with so many pieces of the same style in different sizes. You can buy it at the store or online, where they claim you can even choose colors and they'd make you a completely unique piece using different materials in the same cutting as shown. The whole idea is to re-use materials and it has been around for over 20 years (before the whole go green craze!)- I didn't even know that Urban Outfitters have been around for over 20 years, let alone this division.
One of the reasons I don't like vintage clothes is that whenever I see them they almost always look very dated, hippie and bohemian like, which is so over - thank god! And indeed they do have such stereotypical vintage clothing in this collection here (above: ugh). In fact, most of the collection is like this and I was not impressed. However, there were a few pieces that are intriguing- like this denim vest (right). The extra trimming is quite sharp and refreshing! I'm not really sure how this black blazer (left) is vintage, but I like the cutting.
The ruffled tunic shirt (left) is feminine and romantic looking. Perfect paired with that crisp cropped blazer above! And the floral skirt is cute, reminds me of the floral skirts in the Prada ads this season. Though one should be careful when wearing that in case you look like you're wearing your curtains. Paired with something smart, tailored and modern, it would look stunning.

The thing is though, I'm still not really sure how I feel about this concept of "Urban Renewal." Besides the fact that you still do not know who the previous (many!) owners are, I heard that the renewed material is very scratchy and not very comfortable. On the other hand, we do use recycled paper and bags......so why not clothes? Thoughts?

Image Source: Urban Outfitters

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