Are Fashion Trends Dead?

When you think back to the fashion of the past decades, you think of unforgettable, iconic trends in history. The swinging skirts of the fifties, shift dresses of the sixties, flower power and disco for the seventies, classic big and bold shoulder pads with wild hair for the eighties. In the nineties we found a bit of rebelliousness in a schoolgirl meets tomboy trend, and the 2000’s is a decade many would rather forget, with trends like juicy couture tracksuits and extremely low waisted pants.

But what is the current trend in this day and age? Yeah, we see the same sort of look in a lot of our celebrities that trickle down into what a lot of us “normies” wear. The street style of “it” fashion celebrities like Gigi Hadid, Kendall Jenner, Rhianna and Cara Delevingne shows a definite relaxed, tomboyish look but these days it seems that current fashion is just a mish-mash of different looks we’ve seen in the past. Here are some past trends which I’ve noticed becoming normal in everyday wear:

Mom Jeans
“Mom” or “Mum” jeans (depending on where you’re from) are a classic example of a vintage fashion staple becoming mainstream again. Denim jeans have been a part of fashion and socio-culture over the past century, evolving from utility-wear for farmers and mechanics, to a key to fighting gender roles in the twentieth century feminist movement to now a staple in almost everyone’s wardrobe. If you say you don’t own at least two pairs of denim jeans, you’re probably lying (or need to get yourself to the nearest mall, ASAP!).

So, Mom Jeans these days are a denim jean cut which are super high waisted and a little baggy around the legs. Back in the height of their popularity, they weren’t referred to as “mom jeans”, but simply the jeans which were “in” style. The 2000’s saw a switch to a much lower waistline and tighter fit, thanks to Paris Hilton dominating the fashion world. The phrase “mom jeans” only came about because that’s what all of today’s youth remember their mums wearing. In all of my childhood photos, Mum is wearing a classic pair of 90’s denim jeans. Thankfully, we learnt from the fashion crimes committed in the 2000’s and kind of merged the two trends together as our modern version of “mom jeans”. Nowadays, most fashion stores offer up some variation of these jeans, Asos dedicating a whole page for shopping them online. Style is a thing that’s always changing in some way, and we are always, intentionally or unintentionally drawing from fashion influencers of the past and the return of “mom jeans” is an example of this.

Madonna rocks the classic “mom” jeans for Out Magazine, 1982

Rockabilly and Retro Fashion
Going another step backwards in time, the Rockabilly fashion trend is also one that can be seen in everyday dress. Popular Australian stores like Dangerfield, Kitten D’Amour and That Shop are all inspired by fifties, sixties and seventies era vibes and are making their way into the wardrobes of many young Aussies.

A look from Dangerfield’s Spring 2017 Campaign

This fashion style has been completely embraced by many Australians, some who take subtle inspiration when doing their hair and makeup and some heavily inspired by their favourite era, not only looking the part with their fashion and beauty choices but also in their furniture and car choices too. A local example of the Rockabilly culture is the Greazefest Kustom Kulture Festival, which makes stops throughout Australia showcasing Rockabilly fashion as well as music, cars, furniture and more. Simply by searching the festival on Instagram you can get a taste for the effort the attendees put into their style and the retro influence it has. This fusion of modern and retro has created a fashion subculture amongst many Australians from diverse backgrounds. Rockabilly gatherings such as Greazefest also allow people to be fashion “part-timers”, occasionally dressing in a style that deviates from their normal everydaywear.

Second Hand/Op-Shopping
We all know someone who is extremely resourceful and loves to visit second-hand or “op-shops”. In the past they were considered musty old buildings which sold clothes from Target that your Aunt Susan didn’t want anymore, but now recycled fashion is a huge trend. People are slowly but surely becoming a lot more conscientious about where their clothes came from, steering away from fast fashion. And thus, slow fashion was born. Let’s face it, a lot of fashion focussed youth in Australia are extremely broke, and when you can find some cool vintage stuff second hand cheaper than it would be in the store, of course that’s the way you’re going to shop.

An awesome example of making op shopping trendy is Brisbane-based fashion lover Hannah Klose, who started the website Never Ever Pay Retail to share her passion for second hand fashion with other Australians. On her website, not only does it make finding Op Shops nearby so much easier with her database, she blogs about the outfits she’s created and ways you can really make an your purchases stand out, usually for just a few dollars. Hannah finds that a lot of the clothing she purchases “second hand” still have the tags on or have barely been used, and purchasing from an op-shop rather than a fast-fashion store comes with a much smaller ethical price tag as well.

Is there a 2010’s Trend?
Short answer, yes. As long as we still have big-name brands, runway shows and celebrity fashion influencers, there will always be a reigning trend amongst them all. But despite this, more and more fashion subcultures and ideas continue to pop up, and also hold a significant place within the industry. These days, “it” trends have a much shorter life in the industry. Thanks to the internet and platforms like Instagram, people have access to seeing what “everyone else” is wearing much quicker than even one decade ago. The internet has also facilitated fashion subcultures, so even though something might not be “on trend” for most it will be within a different fashion circle. Fashion trends are not dead, and will never die, but the cycle has changed dramatically and will continue to evolve with time.

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