Think of the '80s. Immediately, one conjures up images of neon, finger-less, lace gloves, and Madonna. Now, try the '60s. Our typical associations are tie-dye, peace signs, and Jefferson Airplane songs. But in the era of Instagram and instant gratification, of personal style blogs and immediate access to fashion shows, the signifiers of the aughts are much more murky.
In this time of personalization, the most recent decades are already having trouble defining themselves, argues The New York Times. No one is identified as being "totally aughts," and the uniform of the '00s hasn't quite appeared in hindsight yet. The NYT has pointed out a couple of reasons for this lack of clarity: First, temporal distance — the aughts were, in fact, less than three years ago. Secondly, as former Lucky editor Lauren Sherman explains, "Because fashion is so accessible to everyone now since prices have gone down so much, and people buy more clothes than they used to, trends become a lot murkier." Thank designer collabs, shows like Project Runway, fashion-fluent stars, and red carpet-spotting for that.
Yet, there are some already-discernible trends emerging from the last few years, even if they may not be the precise ones that you follow. (In fact, as Valerie Steele, director of The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, says, decade-defining moments are often peripheral, at the time. For instance, bell-bottoms “only had a limited moment, so when we look back at the ’70s, we’re exaggerating that aspect.”) Some of The New York Times suggestions include skinny jeans, leggings, Converse shoes, gender-bending items, asymmetric shirts, Burberry plaids, and "boyfriend" styles. For the early part of the century, think J. Lo-inspired velour tracksuits and newsboy caps, along with super-low-rise jeans. More recently, we've got burnt-out tees, a plethora of Olsen-inspired layers, nail art, and studs. As for brands, try the woman-of-the-decade Michelle Obama's favorite, J.Crew. (And J.Crew-owned Madewell feels very now, as well.)
But don't go planning your aughts party just yet, because, as Steele says, “Often the image of a decade doesn’t jell till a few decades later and tends to highlight only a few parts of it.” For instance, our progeny might look at Gaga and think we all went around wearing meat dresses. (Speaking of Gaga, her penchant for extreme shoes will certainly be a defining part of the '00s, so save your Litas for nostalgia's sake.) So, meat dresses, studs, mega-wedges, and a whole lotta Carly Rae Jepsen — get psyched for the future, guys. (New York Times)
Photo: Courtesy of J.Crew