Incorporating history into your day-to-day look can be a minefield, but in essence it’s relatively easy to do; history is what makes up our fashion, and there is no one thing that you are wearing on a daily basis that hasn’t been experimented with before. From shoes to hair accessories, jewellery to trousers, for the most part we are just reusing styles that we have seen in generations that have come before us previously - so what’s the problem in drawing inspiration from days gone by?
This was the original post-war era - a time when people were still high on the freedom after the end of the Second World War and embracing a lot of the change that this terrible event had brought. In terms of style, especially women’s style, it was a time where sexuality could be expressed through the wearing of flirty, floaty, fitted styles which emphasized all of the assets that they wanted shown off. There was a lot of emphasis on patterns, especially polka dots, to bring out a style that it would previously have been too taboo to have done - to draw attention to yourself and your prowess was frowned upon in the years leading up to the war. The advancement of feminism through this era, especially with help of women during the war effort, is definitely reflected through the clothing that appeared - it’s almost like it’s cute but dominating. It still hasn’t fell out of favour and is a great style to fall back on (or initially pick!) for an dress-up occasion like a wedding or a ball, and thankfully the dresses are still relatively easy to get a hold of should you wish to go with one of them - which is highly recommended.
This decade is arguably the one that most designers have drawn inspiration from at some point or another during their career - and how could they not? With its sharp, bold and simple designs, 60s fashion is still going strong in some outlets today. It was mainly inspired by Jackie Kennedy at the beginning, with her smart colour co-ordinated suits and perfectly-placed pearls setting a precedent for how women wanted to dress, and by the end of the decade you had powers such as Twiggy and Nancy Sinatra taking the skirts of these outfits higher and higher to express their sexuality in ways that hadn’t been dared to before. So get your block colours, don some Mary Janes and prepared to exude confidence if you want to take it back to the 60s in the modern day - it was all about taking liberties with your style in order to show that you were comfortable in your skin no matter how big or small you were. It was the challenging of the social norm and an elaboration on the feminism that had previously been drawn upon in the 50s, so quite an important time for the movement to continue and develop. It wasn’t anything as grand as the suffragette movement, but it was certainly a way of women staking a claim over their own bodies by managing their style.
This was a big era for a lot of things - fringing, tie-dye, flared trousers … you name it, it probably made an appearance in the 70s. Makeup wise you could get away with putting any pastel colour on your eyelids and passing it off as fashion, which is totally a great way to be - not really having any style-rules that you need to stick by. The bigger the hair, the better, and it’s like almost anything went. It was following on from the hippy revolution and people were still revelling in the free love (there was a lot of love going around from the 50s onwards, you’ll notice), and ditching the conservative looks. Hey, it was the rise of David Bowie and his legion of monikers, so who can blame those living then for wanting to branch out a bit with him as their idol?
The 80s saw the rise of quite a few subcultures - most notably the Punks and the Goths. As such, fashion took a massive shift depending on which way you were politically or musically inclined. You had a contrast of people wearing solely black with gothic jewellery adorning every available piece of body; others walking around with partly-shaved heads and a bright mohican in the middle of it; and those who just wore the baggiest, brightest trousers that they could find and equally bright and garish shirts to go with it (most courtesy of companies such as Fat Willy’s and Adidas).
The rise of the Spice Girls, Microsoft and Apple, the introduction of Friends and Sex and the City, as well as a whole host of other things; what wasn’t to love about the 90s - especially the fashion? As with the 80s, subcultures were rife and as such style varied dramatically. There is a lot of 90s fashion which is making its way into current day trends (you didn’t think that chokers were a new idea … did you?), so a simple look around while outside will throw you right back into this era. For hair, consider how important accessorizing was, especially in terms of how big you could get it; instead of bobbles go for scrunchies, and instead of thinking of miniature hair clips, try to go with something as big and as bold as you can get your hands on. There are certain elements of 90s fashion which have carried through the past nearly 30 years, including the statement prints that adorned shirts everywhere. Think of the characters from the Fresh Prince of Bel Air - there were certain elements to their style that people definitely kept hold of and would more than definitely wear today.
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