Vintage Fashion Terms Glossary
November 07, 2022

Vintage Fashion Terms Glossary

Terms and conditions commonly used in vintage and retro fashion at Tatyana Clothing.

"Retro, short for retrospective, or 'vintage style,' usually refers to clothing that imitates the style of a previous era. Reproduction, or repro, clothing is a newly made copy of an older garment. Clothing produced more recently is usually called modern or contemporary fashion." - Wikipedia

Some fun vintage fashion terms to become familiar with:

Vintage Reproduction: a newly made copy of an older garment. What we make at Tatyana!

Rockabilly: from1950s, combining elements of rock 'n roll and country.

Capelet: a small cape usually covering the shoulders. (see our Vegan Leather Capelet here!)

Brooch: an ornament fastened to clothing with a hinged pin and catch.

Flapper: from the 1920s, a fashionable young woman intent on enjoying herself and dismissing conventional and/or traditional social norms. This is also associated with a specific style of clothing, commonly dresses, with draping beads, sequins, and other embellishments.

Antique: Clothing that is typically over 100 years old.

Antiquated: Outdated; no longer in style.

Brocade: A fabric with a raised, ornate surface. Brocade fabrics can be made from silk, cotton, or synthetic materials. Vintage brocades are often used in formal wear, such as evening gowns and suits.

Bustle: A type of skirt or attached panel.

Capris: Vintage term used to describe a style of pants or shorts that are cropped just below the knee.


Dresses & Skirts:

Jumper - sleeveless dress worn layered over a top or blouse, or under a sweater
Wiggle dress - fitted, hourglass dress; Marilyn Monroe made these dresses iconic! Hem is narrower than the hips, causing the wearer to walk in shorter strides with legs close together.
Fit and Flare - fitted through the waist and flaring out at or below the hips, seen in our Peggy and Sandra dresses
A-line skirt - shaped like a capital "A", flared at hem
Circle skirt or dress - full and round; a full circle skirt will lie flat in a circle around your body when laid out
Maxi skirt - ankle-length
Midi-length skirt - knee-length
Pencil skirt -  fitted to the body's curves, modernly called a "bodycon" skirt/dress
Swing Dress: a knee-length dress, fitted at the waist and flared so that it swings with the dancer.




Boat-neck - high, wide neckline that cuts straight across the front & back
Cowl neck - exaggerated, draping fabric at neck
Keyhole neck - cutout, fastening at top, front or back. Seen in our Audrey Dress and Keyhole Blouses
Scoop neck - low, U-shaped neckline
Sweetheart neckline shaped like the top half of a heart
V-neck - open, downward point of fabric coming to a "V" shape
Peter Pan Collar: a flat collar with rounded ends that meet at the front



Balloon sleeve - shaped full over the upper arm, narrow from elbow to wrist
Bishop's sleeve - full below the elbow, cinched or left loose to drip at wrist
Cap sleeve - extra-short sleeve which sits on the shoulder
Capelet sleeve - falls several inches below elbow in soft flare


Dart - a pointed tuck; tailoring garment closely to the body, often used around the bust and waist
Pin-Tucks - decorative folds, sewn and pressed down on fabric
Piping - cord-like strip of fabric edging a garment or creating structure, like on a corset
Ruched/Ruching - gathered material sewn to create loose pleats, seen in the bust of our Marilyn in Black Gold dress