Condition Evaluation Language Defined

The VFR respects the integrity of the merchandise we offer for sale in the shoppe, salon, or on-line. We also respect the discernment and discrimination of our clientele. Since an overall use of the distinction ‘vintage’ means a garment or item over twenty years old, there is a general acceptance that this merchandise has been worn previously unless stated otherwise. With wear comes wear, and previous care of vintage items does affect their present and future condition. Not often are the items and garments we encounter totally perfect or pristine. Even at their finest, vintage items and garments have seen and experienced prior life unless they were never worn. And, these never worn items and garments may accumulate a ‘vintage’ appearance due simply to storage and time.

With this as a general disclaimer, we assure the buyer that we examine carefully the merchandise we offer and disclose the best and the worst we find. We do not offer for sale any items that are not wearable, severely damaged, or marred. When purchasing vintage items and garments, realize that they are not ‘off the rack’ new and will require some extra care in their dressing, wearing, use, cleaning, and storing. We will do our best to provide you with the information regarding these issues. Just ask. We offer clean, wearable clothing for sale. Due to shipping and packaging, some items may need to be hung to open air relax the fibers, pressed to remove creases, or steamed for same. We package items and garments in ready to wear condition.
After reviewing the general terms for condition evaluation utilized by many in the vintage industry, the VFR uses the following distinctions to describe item and garment condition:
Mint, Perfect, or Pristine: This means the item or garment is in the finest condition, may seem dated, but otherwise is all intact or perhaps never worn.

Near Mint or Near Perfect: These items or garments are very much like new and have no noticeable tears, rips, stains, or flaws.

Excellent: These items or garments are just a slight step down from perfect. There are some noted minor flaws or stains, but these do not compromise the beauty, vision, or integrity of the item or garment. Basically, we can see them and disclose them. Others would probably never see them.

Very Good: We have found that most vintage items and garments fall into this category. This means that they may have some minor and disclosed flaws, some repairs to those pre-existing flaws, but the item or garment is very wearable as purchased. Only a detailed examination of the piece would disclose any of the noted flaws.

Good: Sometimes a piece is just fun to wear or you fall in love with the thoughts of wearing it and must have it despite any problems with the garment. These items and garments are totally wearable and may have been repaired. The VFR offers only those previously repaired items that have been repaired with efficient workmanship and skill. We also describe in detail the flaws or issues with the item or garment. The VFR has a policy to NOT offer for sale any items for wear that fall into a lesser category than ‘Good’.

Fair: Sometimes you may see an item or garment labeled this way. This means that the item or garment may have many flaws, a combination of flaws, and/or some real problem, like an untreatable stain. The item or garment may still be repairable and wearable, but not without some significant attention. The VFR will not offer for sale such items or garments as part of our merchandise. However, if you see this distinction, you may find a very nice piece that can be adapted for use and wear. So do not ignore merchandise offered in this category if you really think you would like it.

As Found: When an item or garment is offered under this category, it is usually damaged beyond wear or repair. For instance, I found a cache of 1920s dresses in the attic of an old barn. Of course, the elements and critters had their way with them, but I loved what remained of the detail, line, and fabric. They became inspiration after a good cleaning. Items and garments offered for sale labeled ‘as found’ can be a great teacher of prior fashion history if you are a patient and detailed learner. The VFR does not offer items in this category.