Wanneer is iets vintage, antiek, retro of brocante?

When do you call something vintage, antique, retro or brocante?

Where years ago many people liked abstract, modern, minimalist and lots of white in the interior, you increasingly see vintage and antiques. Having unique and authentic objects in your home that have a story behind them fits into any interior...

One vintage clothing store after another pops up on the street scene. Not only vintage clothing, but also sales of LPs are picking up enormously. More and more people are serving coffee in retro coffee cups at home. An antique painting hangs next to a modern ixxie. Or there is a beautiful antique vase on the windowsill with a beautiful bouquet of self-picked flowers from the picking garden.

But what is actually the difference between vintage, antique and retro?

When is something vintage?

Nowadays everything can be called vintage and it is no longer looked at so closely. Not surprising, sell something as vintage and you can ask a lot more for it.

But in principle we call something vintage when it is at least 25 years old. At least, the vintage products sell are at lest 25 years old.

vintage bread bin enamel

When is something antique?

With antique products it is often a bit more precise. In principle, we speak of an antique when it is at least 100 years old. Although books that are 75 years old can also be described as antiques.

Antique and vintage products often show signs of age such as cracks, stains, scratches, etc. This is part of the charm of the product and increases the price rather than lowering it. When you buy vintage and antiques you buy a piece of history. You buy a product that has been used by many people and you can see this.

coffee grinder antique

When is something retro?

Retro means 'looking back'. You look back nostalgically and with a warm feeling at times gone by. With that description you may already understand that retro products are not vintage or antique. They are newly made products with a sense of antiquity. Retro products give the impression that they come from that time, but in reality they are newly made. A vintage teapot is a teapot that is more than 25 years old, for example from the 1950s. A retro teapot is a teapot that has recently been made in the style of a 1950s teapot.

Retro products can also be expensive because they give the impression that they are old.

retro baskets


When is something brocante?

Brocante comes from the French word 'La brocante' which actually means a flea market. These are products that, like vintage, are at least 25 years old, but not necessarily antique. The difference between vintage and brocante is that vintage products should still look good, except for some signs of age. Brocante, on the other hand, may be much more weathered and is usually more fragile, robust and has more age damage. For this reason, brocante is more often used as decoration, while vintage products can still be used.

Because brocante comes from French life, you often see that brocante are rural French objects.

brocante tray
Back to blog