Have you seen Midnight in Paris? If you, then you’re familiar with the concept of idealizing the past until realizing that no time was actually perfect.
The past century was one full of changes in fashion. It was a century of emancipation and a century of technology, and enormous changes could be seen from one decade to another. Today I decided to browse through the 60s-90s fashion and see what trends are still alive today.
Picture from Seventeen Magazine, 1965; Polka dot dress
Oh, the 60s! After so much time, the hems of the dresses finally went up, and women started showing more and more skin. You have to acknowledge Twiggy and her A-line mini dresses, in bright color blocks. It was also the decade when synthetic fabrics entered the fashion scene, thus allowing more flexibility in movement and in actual tailoring. But one thing I can never get enough of is the prettiest print of all: polka dots. It’s feminine and cute, but it’s also ladylike. It’s definitely on the “take it” list.
The people of the 70s dreamed of a peaceful world. They picked natural fabrics and materials, natural paints, natural processing. They wanted a return to nature and a world of inclusion and understanding. That’s why ethnic references were deeply valued in fashion, from Aztec prints to Romanian peasant blouses. Paired with wide-leg jeans or maxi skirts, such items are the basis of the bohemian style of the 70s, which is now translated as boho-chic.
Picture from The Dinasty; Striped ruffle sleeve dress
The soap opera The Dinasty was probably the biggest promoter of puffy shoulders. Just look at those ladies rocking their shoulder pads! Combine that with sequins, color blocking, neons, harem “M.C. Hammer” pants, and the infamous mullet, and you get the wild, wild 80s. Today, we’d rather tone down a bit and stick to rather small, puffy shoulders on tops. When inspired by the 80s, you must remember one thing: moderation.
Image from Simplicity; Swallow tail romper
With a background like the 80s, the 90s were also mixing a lot of things. There was grunge, there was preppy, there was heavy metal, techno and girl power. The result: over-sized layers, mixed prints and “utilitarian” pieces, like the romper. Today, we still like this cute little piece, only we style it to look as little as possible as pajamas: belts, leather shoes and blazers do the trick.