Trends & Shopping

An Ode to the 90’s

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I wasn’t old enough to be completely aware of everything during the 1990’s, but in retrospect, I can tell it was a great time.

Recent news broke of Christian Lacroix bringing 90’s Parisian glamor back via his collaboration with Schiaparelli, and now, another 90’s fashion icon is reclaiming his throne. After Nicola Formichetti’s departure from Mugler, it was recently announced that Thierry Mugler himself would take back his label. Mugler’s designs ranged from surreal to insane (see the image above), and while this extravagant style that owned the 90’s isn’t exactly my taste, I can’t wait to see a little more liveliness on the runways.

Fashion in this decade seemed to be multifaceted, to say the least. Grunge was popular, noted by the “heroin chic” look revolutionized by Kate Moss. Meanwhile, the Era of the Supermodel had peaked, with the development of icons such as Christy Turlington, Linda Evangelista, Cindy Crawford, and Naomi Campbell. Styles ranged from flamboyant designs a la Gianni Versace to “casual chic,” inspired by Alexander McQueen’s low-waisted jeans. The 90’s was a time of style experimentation; there was limitless excitement and creativity before this generation’s rigid fashion standards.

Today, we’re beginning to see a resurgence of the 90’s spirit. With girls like Karlie Kloss and Joan Smalls taking on household names, the supermodel may be coming back after being wiped away by disposable preteens. Meanwhile, some fashions are reviving old trends, like Hedi Slimane’s grungy aesthetic for Saint Laurent or Donatella Versace’s references to the house’s archives in her recent collections. With the return of Christian Lacroix and Thierry Mugler, this wild decade is having a moment.

I’ve been accustomed to the strict, simple, and elegant aesthetics of present day fashion, so the 90’s vibes might take some getting used to. Regardless, it’s going to be exciting to see some new versions of old styles. Let’s just hope there won’t be any slap bracelets or overalls.

Check out some 1990’s fashion & contemporary interpretations below:

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Top 8 Style Tips

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You’ve probably lost count of how many of these types of articles you’ve read, but some people just won’t seem to learn. On a daily basis, I see plenty of well dressed people. Unfortunately, I also see a lot of people who make me cringe, and I’d really like to help them out. So here are my top 8 tips for looking stylish…or at least looking somewhat presentable:

  1. Less is More: This is definitely one of the most common tips, yet I feel like it just doesn’t register for some people. It’s more of a problem when someone is trying so hard to be stylish, hoarding all of the season’s hottest trends at once. STOP. You don’t look stylish, you look confused and quite possibly mentally unstable. Stick to one trend at a time and try to incorporate it into your own sense of style. I know minimalism isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but basics will keep you from looking insane. If you’re wearing a crazy print or embellishment, add some black or neutrals to tone it down a little. Let’s say you’re wearing a shirt with a neon pattern. Put off the printed pants in exchange for some black jeans, and take off that costume jewelry. Some great basics to pair with your wild pieces and simplify your looks are a white shirt or blouse, a black suit or a “LBD,” a basic leather jacket, and classic jeans.
  2. Throw Some Shade:
    Yes, we all have our days when we don’t want to put together a great look. Maybe we aren’t looking or feeling our best in general. In this case, sunglasses can be your savior. Some classic Ray Bans will add an extra dose of style when you’re a little disheveled, while they’ll also hide any insecurities. This isn’t necessarily an excuse for wearing sweatpants or PJs, but it’s definitely a step up for some lazy college students.
  3. Take Care:
    Even the best dressed people make the huge mistake of not properly maintaining their clothes. I’m sorry, but I really don’t care about your new silk Versace shirt if it’s a wrinkled mess. Take your ass to a dry cleaner, or at least read the washing instructions on the tags of your clothes. Also, shining and protecting footwear is essential. Nothing looks worse than a filthy pair of shoes. The price or quality of your clothes and shoes is irrelevant if you can’t take care of them. We’re all big boys and girls, and we can learn how to get our shit together.
  4. Don’t Become a Slave to Trends:
    Trends are great. They help us keep an eye on what’s going on in fashion, and they make things interesting when we look back on old styles. Also, they make it easier to decide what to wear and how to wear it. But they shouldn’t become your only frame of reference. Blindingly bright prints were huge a few seasons ago, but it’s unlikely that those same pieces would be appealing today. Don’t buy something that won’t look good in a couple short months; you’ll be wasting your time and money. As Yves Saint Laurent once said, “fashions fade, style is eternal.”
  5. Shut Up Your Shirts:
    I’m a fan of graphic tee’s. What I’m not a fan of is obnoxious shirts with obscene graphics. “I’m with stupid?” No, you look stupid. Also, in-your-face brand names or logos aren’t making you seem sophisticated. If it looks like something you could buy off of the boardwalk at the Jersey Shore, don’t wear it in public. I’ll admit I have some cheesy tee’s, and I’m all about those “Homiés” or “Comme des Fuckdown” pieces. But there’s a time and a place, and certain t-shirts are immature and straight up tasteless.
  6. Dress for Yourself:
    We all want to emulate a lot of the styles we see in magazines or on the runways, but not everything works for everyone. It’s important to dress for our age, body types, and personalities. If you’re generally pretty conservative, don’t try to do the “rock chic” thing. Also, I’d just like to say that there’s a difference between looking elegant and looking like a 45 year old; you’re not Audrey Hepburn, you’re a teenaged girl. The fit of clothing is essential, especially for menswear. Clothes look sloppy when they’re too baggy, and nothing looks attractive about someone shoving themselves into things that aren’t their size.
  7. Repeat it Right:
    There’s nothing wrong with wearing even the most elaborate pieces more than once, but don’t wear them the exact same way every time. This type of redundancy makes you look boring, lazy, and uninspired. If you’ve got an awesome shirt, wear it with a different pair of pants, add a jacket, or add some cool accessories. Most importantly, allow enough time between repetition, regardless of how much you switch it up. I’ve worn certain things almost consecutively, and it’s still embarrassing,
  8. Do you:
    This is just as obvious as the first tip, but people still tend to walk around looking like clones. One of the greatest things about style, especially in Western culture, is the freedom to express yourself. I see too many people walking around looking identical, unintentionally categorizing themselves as what some like to call “basic bitches.” Don’t be a basic bitch. Also, any runway look can easily be modified to fit your own individual sense of style. I’m not going to tell you how to create your own style when it’s something I’ve been establishing myself, and everyone has their own tastes. But it’s necessary to be creative and expressive. Just don’t go overboard and become a caricature of yourself.

There’s a lot more I’d like to cover, but at least this is a start. Though slightly redundant, hopefully these tips are helpful for a lot of people. No one is perfect, and we all make mistakes. But try to keep some of these concepts in mind before walking around looking like a fool with no sense of style.

Top Items

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My birthday is in exactly 2 weeks, which has got me searching for a lot of different potential gifts. In my hunt, I came across a few gems, and they’re all pretty reasonably priced.

I don’t specifically go bargain shopping, but I definitely get excited when I find an incredible item for less than I’d expect (but really, who doesn’t?). That’s definitely the case with these.

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The first item is this leather biker jacket from the Topman Lux collection. It’s 100% authentic leather with a superior cut and silhouette. Honestly, I saw someone wearing this jacket and thought it was Saint Laurent at first glance. One of my pet peeves with the leather jackets I currently have is their gold zippers, so I love the silver details on this. Most importantly, this amazing quality item could go with just about any outfit, adding a luxurious edge. Though it’s one of the best leather jackets I’ve seen, it’s just $400, which is pretty good considering how versatile and long-lasting this piece will be. In a nutshell, I need it.

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Also giving me Saint Laurent vibes are these suede monk strap shoes from Zara. At just under $100, they look pristine, yet they can definitely be added to a variety of outfits. This type of shoe is very “in” right now, but this particular pair isn’t a slave to trends and could be worn for years down the line. I’m in love with these, too.

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Finally, I’m obsessed with this black leather snapback from online boutique, Stampd. I’ve been on kind of a snapback kick for the past few weeks, and I’ve been all about black leather for quite some time. So can someone please tell me why I don’t own this hat?

Overall, I’ve got to get my hands on all of these.

The Ultimate T

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Hermès definitely knows how to produce some pricey luxury items. If you ever get through the wait list, the famous Birkin bag will cost you at least $20,000. Meanwhile, a plain cotton t-shirt for men comes in at over $300. The latter price seems like nothing compared to the fashion house’s latest release: a men’s t-shirt for $91,500. Now I’m not one to mock the high cost of high fashion, as I respect the craftsmanship and prestige that goes into these pieces. However, I can’t deny I’m a little shocked by that price tag.

The t-shirt is made of crocodile leather, and to be honest, I’m kind of into this. Actually I love it. If I could get my hands on this top without selling my soul or sacrificing a child, I gladly would.

Saint Laurent Roc Sack Backpack

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In the short period of time Hedi Slimane has been working at Saint Laurent (formerly known as Yves Saint Laurent), he’s managed to piss off a decent amount of people. It probably doesn’t help that his fall 2013 menswear and womenswear collections were both…well let’s say they weren’t exactly amazing. It was actually reminiscent of some of Urban Outfitters’ absolute worst items, but I’m not trying to turn this into a Slimane-bashing post (trust me, I’m tempted). Let’s focus on the positive: before even I (a once avid Hedi Slimane fan) lost hope for his work at Saint Laurent, he presented a phenomenal spring 2013 menswear collection. One of the many pieces I’d love to buy is the Roc Sack Backpack in Black Leather (I’ve already mentioned how much I love black leather).

I have a leather backpack right now, and after seeing this bag, I’m ready to throw mine out the window. I’m always on the go, and when I’m not, I’d definitely like to be. I obviously don’t want to buy some hideous hiking backpack, and I’m not into man purses, totes, or briefcases. The Roc Sack has lots of pockets and cool details, and it’s perfect to carry around all day and maybe even at night. Oh, and it retails for $2,995…casually. My birthday is May 2nd, which isn’t too far away. If anyone wants to buy this for me, I’ll be eternally grateful.