How do I date vintage clothes?

Has anyone got any good tips on dating vintage clothes? I know in the bigger picture of things it probably doesn’t matter whether something is authentic 1940s or a 1980s copy but it would be great to be armed with some knowledge next time I go shopping for vintage clothes!

I bought a waistcoat for my 6 year old son a few weeks ago, which was tagged as being a 1940s children’s waistcoat. He adores it so it doesn’t really matter either way, but it’s reversible and black on one side and red on the other. This seems too colourful for a 1940s waistcoat so I’m wondering whether it is more likely to be 1950s or even 1960s. Has anyone got any ideas? There’s no label or anything which can help me date it in that way…



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