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Tracing Trend Timeline

October 13, 2011

Fashion has been waning and burgeoning as evidenced in the most famed trend timeline for the past 25 years. The inevitable movement of style, may it be receding or advancing, was the upshot to the continuously- changing in-style awareness and desire for original routes around fashion.

Back in the ’80, shoulder pads were popularized by Joan Collins and Linda Evans, who starred in the famous television show, “The Dynasty.” The recognition for this trend stayed all throughout the 1980s and even reached three more years in the 90’s. One of the grounds as to the abrupt reputation of shoulder pads for women was the reverberation of women’s empowerment in the workplace. Women’s strengthening aspiration and assertiveness were revealed through “power dressing.” (’85)

Continuing in the ’80 during which the divergent Goth era started to peak, a derivative of the British punk picture. This was believed to be the Thatcher/Reagan Era , when people were being confused about and resistant to the culture being force on them, when conventional and traditional values and possessing the positive characteristics and attitudes were publicized to be the standard behaviors, and when the slumping of the economy, with the growing disparity between the wealthy and deprived. The confrontation and unstopping resistance and deviation of the people lead to this movement by which their dark or morbid style gave expression and characterization to their emotions. Now, it’s known as “punk-goth.”  (‘87)

James Truman, the editor of Details Magazine, said in 1992, “It’s unfashion. …Grunge is about not making a statement, which is why it’s crazy for it to become a fashion statement.…Buying grunge from Seventh Avenue is ludicrous.”  This happened at the height of recession but it was relived and given attention to by famous fashion designers and critics during the 1992 New York Fashion Week.

“Mixing everything up. …A typical outfit looks as if it were put together with the eyes closed in a very dark room,” commented Bernadine Morris, fashion critic, on Jacob’s Collection (bare midriffs, baggy dresses with printed granny flowers, waist-tied flannel shirts, and free size combat boots). Furthermore, Anna Sui’s interpretation consisted of flower-child hippie, while Christian Francis Roth came up with shirts lightly tied around the waist from which very soft leggings peek out as his version of “grunge.” (’92)

After a decade or so, another genre of style emerged and was depicted as the elite and sophisticated look. It was said that it was pleasing for anyone who embraced “Ivy Look” or more commonly known as ‘preppy.’ According to Oscar Wilde, “The Ivy Look’s”  purpose could be summed up in his quotation,  ”To me, beauty is the wonder of wonders. It is only shallow people who do not judge by appearances.”

The authors of the book, “The Ivy Look,” said that anyone who pulls on the Ivy look acts out as an approval for style and beauty. People who have the taste of appreciation for this style can differ considerably, from professionals who are in the corporate world to those who are not confined in offices, because their admiration for it conveys a curiosity in originality and façade, a characteristic found in persons from all walks of life.

“It is a wardrobe that bestows tradition and elegance upon those who were not born into backgrounds of tradition and elegance. It’s a quiet, decidedly un−flashy way of communicating an appreciation for clothes,” said Gaul in his introduction about the fashion of “refined prep.” (’06)

What’s it gonna be for the next decade?

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