The Effortless Cool of the 90's
Updated: Mar 19, 2020
From the Spice Girls to Kate Moss, the 1990's had their fair share of fashion icons that helped to shape them into what they are today: a decade of effortless cool showcased by simplicity. This was the first decade that stood out from the rest and transformed modern fashion as it ditched the patterns, loud colours and shoulders pads- you no longer needed to know which colour went with which or which patterns to avoid, anyone could have became stylish, even on a budget. In an age of iPhones, over-the-top approach to life and impressionistic music, the past has become the most glamorous place to be, therefore here are the biggest 90's trends through the eyes of a nostalgic 90's teenager: my own mother.
A going out outfit has never been more effortless- this dress did not have to show much to make an impression. Whether paired with sneakers or heels, you really had the power to wear it as you please. It became the it-girl staple due to popularisation by models such as Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell and who doesn't want to feel like a model?
Most likely the biggest 90's trend as this is the first time that this material was so loved worldwide. Before a work-man's rag, now a fashion staple worn by the biggest in show business. This trend was completely versatile as it took on different forms in the shape of jeans, shorts, skirts and dresses to please its ever-growing audience. You know something is massive when Yves Saint Laurent himself says, "I wished I had invented blue jeans. They have expression, modesty, sex appeal, simplicity- all I hope for in my clothes." Although a 90's trend, denim will never be out of style evident by its ever-present popularity.
A style emphasised by dishevelled and dark clothes, it was an extreme form of the effortlessness of the 90's. Grunge was often associated with ripped jeans, leather jackets and heavy boots. This subculture was known for challenging societal norms, materialism and being devoted lovers of alternative-rock and metal. Their look was often accessorised with ear studs, dark hair, black nails and eyeliner.
A trend that gained massive popularity around 2015 as well as the 90's was the choker. A more youthful version of a traditional necklace, this accessory was loved by Princess Diana ever since the 80's, as she would often opt for a multi-strand pearl version whether on Royal Duties or at the Met Gala. The choker had the power the transform an ordinary outfit into a cool look, whether on a black strand or pearl, this trend was truly fit for a princess.
90's was when the crop top was born. With the rise of the popularity of the supermodels and confident singers, women finally got the confidence to show off the bit of skin that has always been covered. Women working out at the gym was finally accepted, and what is a better way to show off your abs than a tiny crop top?
This a personal favourite of my interviewee, and although this is another form of the denim trend, the popularity of this garment is not to be understated. Both practical for garden-work and cool enough for catching up with a friend at the local cafe, the overalls became everyone's favourite. All you had to do was wear a simple shirt underneath, throw on a pair of sneakers and voila! You were ready for your day.