Friday, May 15, 2009

Vintage Appeal - 1980's style

Hooray...vintage fashion is most definitely here to stay. With the passing of Rosemount fashion week and the latest winter trends from NY, Paris and Milan being showcased for their next season is official – a vintage aesthetic is still the stand out design favourite with many of the top fashion houses both here and overseas.

Louis Vuitton does 80's glamour perfectly

Most notably, the 1980’s is having a huge moment with serious shoulder pads popping up everywhere and body con dresses in fluoro colours a catwalk fave! I’m thrilled. I’ve always loved the 80’s – the fashion, movies and music (maybe because that’s where I spent my teens and am ever so slightly nostalgic). It was such a fun era though and required a complete disregard for taste and rules. All you needed was attitude and confidence...the more colourful and flamboyant the outfit the better and nothing was too OTT. Obviously, there a many things best left behind, most notably blue eye shadow, bubblegum jeans and spiral perms (all of which I am guilty of wearing – occasionally at the same time!)

The great thing about referencing a fashion era is that designers now cleverly deconstruct the look. Shoulder pads for instance were often simply a matter of sewing in huge foam pads, giving the garment an often boxy, rather unfinished look. The current trend for power dressing and a sharp shoulder is all about amazing nips, tucks, pleats and rolls in amazing fabrics. It’s definitely OTT, but it’s also art – just look at some of the dresses and jackets from the likes of Balmain, Givenchy, Chanel and Dolce & Gabbana – the beauty lies in the details.

Having said that, I have been collecting authentic 80’s for a few years now, particularly disco frocks and sun dresses in mad colours and prints with plenty of frills. For every trashy, poorly made garment from that era there are still a myriad of fabulous designer frocks in great condition to be found.

Unfortunately, during the 90’s when fashion took a turn towards boring and safe and I went travelling for a few years, I stupidly discarded many of my glorious 80’s wardrobe including high waisted cut off denim shorts (although I’m quite sure I would not wear these now even though I weigh less than I did one needs to see a 36 year old women in tiny shorts) , a black leather pencil skirt, a leather biker jacket, a few man style jackets and a black silk tuxedo suit that would just be so perfect right now...sigh!

Beautiful Balmain get it oh-so-right!