Branding 101: Why Your Vintage Shop Needs to Tell a Story

June 16th, 2013

how to brand your etsy shop

Photography by Diane Dulgerian 

The most successful brands tell a story about who they are and what owning a piece of their products does for your life.

Without a story behind your vintage brand, your goods are the same as if the shopper is visiting a flea market, thrift store or digging through their Grandma’s closet.

Your vintage shop needs to brand itself so that in the sea of sellers, you can differentiate your product from the rest, reaching the customer who sees themselves in your merchandising, models and curation of top-notch vintage finds. That’s why my e-book, the 100 Best Vintage Shops Online, is such a key resource for aspiring sellers to understand the value of branding.

Some vintage shops brand themselves as portals for finding the trends of the past to wear in a modern way today. Others brand themselves as destinations for pin-up princesses and rockabilly girls. Still others offer a collection of contemporary classics presented like a 21st century e-tailer with a taste for the nostalgia.

Choosing your branding should speak to your personal passions. You cannot authentically market a brand that doesn’t represent your personality, or the insincerity of your branding campaign will repel potential customers and ultimately, leave you unhappy and dissatisfied.

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The Real Lives of Vintage Sellers: Daily Dilemmas & Doubts

June 7th, 2013
vintage survey graph

While selling vintage may look like all fun and games, there’s serious work to be done before any golden reward (i.e. profits) can be achieved. That’s why I surveyed 138 vintage sellers on the problems and daily dilemmas which face their shops. Here are the results from the digital survey via SurveyMonkey, including bar graphs, comments and percentages highlighting the struggles behind selling vintage clothing online.

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Empowered by the Past: A Vintage Compact Tells a Special ’40s Story

May 28th, 2013
1950s children vintage photo

Bag the Jewels Vintage founder Caroline Henney reflects on the past through a vintage mirror once owned by her mother and now in her collection since she passed away 24 years ago. Her mother, who served in Britain’s ATS (Auxiliary Territorial Service) during World War II in the 1940s, appreciated lipstick not just as a beauty booster, but a source of confidence and morale as influenced by her experiences in war torn England.

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Formula: The Easiest Way to Price Vintage Clothing

May 24th, 2013
Money in the form of many large bills

After posing the question, “How do you price vintage clothing?” on the Facebook page, I was left wondering if it was worth asking the question at all. Why? Because everyone had their own point-of-view, and that there was no “industry standard” for accurately and fairly pricing vintage clothing. It was after Heather McWilliams of Good ‘N Plenty Vintage sent me a mock-up for her “pricing formula” that the truth clicked.

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Empowered by the Past: Sara’s Mom Had Sporty ’70s Style

May 23rd, 2013
1970s fashion photo

Sarara Vintage Couture founder reflects on how her mother – who was raised in a working class family in the 1950s and 1960s – took small steps toward greatness with both personal and inner style rooted in confidence and creativity. Raised without the financial means to purchase fashions new in the store, Sara’s mother handcrafted a wardrobe that spoke to the person she wanted to be and could become with perseverance, patience and hard work.

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The History of Vintage Costume Jewelry Brands

May 17th, 2013

Vintage costume jewelry is perhaps the easiest way to wear vintage for any modern woman of any background, style or size. It was thanks to 1950s fashion that costume jewelry rose in prominence for the everyday woman to wear. As necklines dipped lower and hair became shorter, the need to wear earrings, bracelets and necklaces every single day became not just a trend, but outfit protocol.

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How to Make Customers Love You (and Buy Your Vintage Clothing)

May 14th, 2013

Last week I spoke with Lara of Locapoxie Vintage about how she should be marketing her online vintage shop to improve her sales. Lara was an awesome girl and based in an equally awesome town (Asheville). After sharing some of my social media marketing tips with her, I decided I’d do the same for you with these three key ways to sell more vintage by personalizing your online & offline interactions … the smart way!

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Black, White and My 1960s Mr. Dino Dress

May 13th, 2013
mr dino vintage '60s dress

Mr. Dino is a designer from the 1960s who once dined with many a fine lady. These ladies enjoyed wearing his op-art prints to social soirees, artistic affairs and to raise eyebrows whilst shopping around town. Mr. Dino made dresses of designs compared to the likes of Emilio Pucci. While we all know Mr. Pucci by both first and last name basis, the average #vintagelover is hardly familiar with the pseudonym Mr. Dino.

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