The ‘90s were a wonderful time provided we don’t actually think about them too much. Sure, we had “Sabrina the Teenage Witch,” leather pants, and Gin Blossoms, but we also had inflatable furniture, little to no Internet, and a complete lack of “Titanic” DVDs (which is an actual tragedy).
But you’re right: the fashion was wonderful. And while the days of ribbed turtlenecks are behind us forever (are you listening, all of us?) there are a few ways to bring the trends of the ‘90s back, just in time for Fall 2013. Now you can dress every day like it’s Rex Manning Day.
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1. Desert Boots
Was there anything more wonderful than pairing desert boots with every piece you owned? No. So while the look is big in men’s fashion for Fall 2013, it was re-introduced earlier in the year to women by chains like Mango who are carrying the style into fall. You can, of course, also go the way of Doc Marten’s: since the military look is in this season, take advantage by donning the all-encompassing boot that you can pair with basically anything.
2. Dark Lipstick
No, not red lipstick – dark lipstick; dark like Nancy’s soul in “The Craft.” The ‘90s are synonymous with grunge and goth-inspired aesthetics, so use lines like RiRi [hearts] MAC to add drama and depth to your day-to-day vibe. Tones like purple, burgundy, plum, and blood red are wearable to most occasions, including the office (because let’s remember: this was a ‘90s trend that was once worn to offices all the time).
3. Shorter, Flatter Bobs
Once upon a time, there were only curling irons and curlers to give hairstyles body so we saw sleeker, less styled hair in the ‘90s that reflected the casual vibe. So far, Tavi Gevinson, Rita Ora, and Zoe Saldana have opted for the simple, volume-less bob, while centre parts and loose waves were seen at the Nicole Miller F/W show. Simply ask yourselves this: what would Liv Tyler do?
It’s time to be honest with ourselves and with each other: none of us have ever felt as cool as we did when we’d wear our floral leggings with our floral dresses (and then pair those work socks and desert boots, obviously). Fortunately, DKNY’s Fall/Winter collection can give us that power again: this season, they showcased matching skirts and sweaters in loud colours and bold prints, which also reminded us of wonderful ‘90s trend.
5. Leopard Print
If you watched “Sabrina the Teenage Witch,” you’ll never forget Sabrina Spellman’s leopard print blouse from the opening credits – and you’ll also remember Peggy Bundy’s day-to-day look, too. (Because who doesn’t?) Well, DKNY was listening: they offered several leopard print pieces and were joined by designers like Ralph Lauren and Burberry, who showcased the print both playfully and cleanly.
6. Oversize Coats
We may not have appreciated it then, but watching “Home Alone” and “Home Alone 2” now we can embrace the wonder of Mrs. McCallister’s winter coat. (And let’s face it: when we were kids, our moms dressed pretty cool.) Rest assured you can channel the early ‘90s in terms of outerwear this fall and winter. Blumarine debuted a winter-appropriate trench coat that screams ‘90s throwback, while Celine’s oversize styles make you want to fly from Paris to Chicago because your kid’s defending his house.
7. Slouchy Pants
Slacks -- the true sign of adulthood. (Especially since most of us wore dresses, leggings, or classic straight-legged jeans 20 years back.) Well, to go hand-in-hand with your ‘90s-inspired coat, there are the quintessential business trousers: like Rue du Mail’s wide-legged late ‘90s style, The Row’s pleated look, and Carolina Herrera’s classic pant suit. Just make sure to pair with heels (or risk tripping over the hems like one of us may have done during a formal school event).
Think back to YMCA all-ages dances and “Electric Circus.” Are you there? Excellent, because that’s the mindset you need to be in when choosing to embrace the wide world of feathers – (one of) the ultimate ‘90s embellishments. However, instead of covering a sweater completely, you can embellish a piece enough to pay homage to the trend without falling into a flashback episode. See Louis Vuitton’s feathered plaid coat, or Chado Ralph Rucci’s feathered tunic for how to keep the look updated.
Well now that we’re in the “E.C.” state of mind, we might as well embrace the late ‘90s even more with a return to neon – a carry-over from spring. While few really decked out in the tones, designers like Han Ahn Soon used neon to brighten neutral pieces, while House of Holland committed 100% with a neon green leather bomber that was a half ‘60s/half ‘90s dream.
True, leather has been everywhere since the beginnings of time, but leather outfits haven’t been prevalent since the 1990s. This fall, that ends. Designers like Herve Leger by Max Azria capitalized on late ‘90s trends like crop tops and baggy leather pants, while Vionnet opted for the sleekness of the early ‘90s by pairing electric blue and black for a very commanding feel. Just don’t do what Ross Geller did – or if you do, remember that talcum powder will not help get your leather pants back on if they shrink from your sweat.
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