Vintage vs Retro: What's the Difference? July 25 2022

People often get confused when talking about vintage and retro items. Basically, vintage denotes something that is authentic from an era at least twenty years ago, while retro is new items that have been made to imitate items of the past.

Urban Americana’s location is the place to go if you're in the Long Beach region. If you’re outside of the Long Beach area but still want to furnish your house with vintage pieces, no worries, you can purchase online where we updated our selection daily. Our online store has a variety of any piece of furniture you need, such as chairs, couches, dining tables, lamps, and storage options.

Keep reading to learn the distinctions between vintage vs. retro.


When referring to anything modern, the term “retro” expresses an item or aesthetic reminiscent of a bygone era. Retro is a copy of the original, not the original itself. Compared to retro items, vintage items are more sought after since they have been around for a significant amount of time (at least 20 years) and are more scarce.

The most straightforward approach to differentiate between retro and vintage is to think of vintage as referring to the actual structure and retro as referring to the aesthetic.


The terms retro and vintage are often used interchangeably to describe eras and periods of fashion and products/internal decor items. Generally speaking, an item from the 1920s to the 1980s is considered vintage in terms of style and design.

Items that were made or created in the 1920s to the 1980s are referred to as vintage. Vintage items and clothes are made using antique materials and by old manufacturers. With the help of modern fabrics/materials and construction techniques, retro items successfully channel the past look. In addition, the vintage aesthetic is sleeker and more modern.

When discussing anything being vintage, we generally refer to its age, craftsmanship, pattern, or style. Retro is exclusively concerned with how something looks, often in terms of style or design. Items considered vintage is an original piece, whereas items considered retro is a copy or imitations. The similarities between vintage and retro styles make them almost interchangeable.

We use the term vintage to describe both older bottles of wine and previously owned clothes items. However, the term retro may also be used to describe any items that make a reappearance.


Determining if an item is vintage may be defined in several ways. Validating any of these will need investigation, but here are some first steps:

• Verify the label or tag.
• Which country did the manufacturing take place in? In what nation do you reside?
• Who created the product, whether it is a Union or a company's name brand?
• Do you have any identifying information, such as a Style or Lot Number?
• You can tell whether something is authentically old by looking at the typeface.
• Is it a little dated?


If you're looking for timeless vintage items, look no further than Urban Americana. We offer something for everyone, whether your taste leans toward the mid-century contemporary, farmhouse, vintage industrial, or something more eccentric and bright. Depending on your needs, we may arrange for several shipping methods to get your order to you quickly and affordably. Alternatively, if you're not local and would like to buy online, we can assist in arranging for white glove shipment right to your doorstep.

Contact us at Urban Americana if you're looking for a central location to satisfy your mid-century style and design. You can browse for furniture and goods to build a house that transcends the present age. Please take advantage of our online businesses' many fascinating and profitable offers.