I’ve stumbled across a brilliant online resource – The Vintage Fashion Guild (the blog is on http://www.vintagefashionguild.blogspot.com/ ) – where lots of vintage traders sign up to discuss vintage clothing, to post links and contribute. It’s fairly US orientated, but there are apparently members in the UK as well.
The main thing I love is that the website has a label dictionary so that you can see whether a designer piece is authentic or not, and if it is, which era it is from. The “dictionary” is not in any way exhaustive, but it is the best one I’ve come across by far.
The other thing which makes me yearn to be part of this resource is finding out what kind of pricing strategies people have, if any. It’s impossible to find any decent books on the subject. The ones I have found are a good few years old and have terrible reviews (“doesn't offer much help” and “If you were looking into a particular brand or how to price a garment this really wouldn't help” – not glowing, are they?), which leads me to believe people just pluck numbers from mid-air and see if it works.
There must be a system of some kind. My Germanic brain demands it. EIN, ZWEI, wir must ein accurate price haben! DREI, FIER, das label must be correct!
More research has yielded the eVintage Resource Library (http://evintagesociety.com/vintageorbust/?page_id=56#fash), which has some great resources for dating and sizing things.
And that’s my capacity for today used up. I now know what a 1980s Dior label looks like in comparison to a 1960s one, but I also know that that tiny nugget of information will have replaced something else in my brain. I have only so much storage space, and now I can’t remember any basic arithmetics (I’m serious - I even had to look up the spelling on Wikipedia. This does not bode well).