Fashion Throughout the Decades


Sneakers can look great with skirts at any age. (Dreamstime/TNS)

Megan Gill, In Depth Editor

Popular clothing styles are changing all the time. Lately, fashion has been a smorgasbord of different styles. In the past, though, popular styles were refined to a few simple pieces ranging from flapper dresses to bucket hats.

The flapper look was very popular among women in the 1920’s. The Fashion History timeline said that Coco Chanel helped popularize the flapper look, as she was a popular designer during that time period.

Tennis also became a popular sport among women, during this time period and it inspired many new fashion looks in women, such as sportswear, which was previously considered unacceptable for women to wear, and it was normally considered more masculine.

Men’s fashion in the 1920’s was very simple. Men wore soft-collared shirts and button suit jackets said The Fashion History Timeline.

The 1930’s marked a subtle change in women’s fashion from masculine styles, to a more feminine style. Flattering styles that showed off women’s natural curves came back into style, with pieces like gowns, A-line dresses, and skirts that would flare out at the ankle.

As for men, their style was highly inspired by movies in the 1930’s. Menswear became more “democratic,” looking, and their fashion began to be less formal. Men still wore suits, but they also began to wear things like knitted sweaters.

The fifties were also a very feminine decade for women, as cinched waists and flowy skirts became popular. Cocktail dresses grew in popularity and women began wearing them in public.

Men’s clothing slowly became less formal which was also inspired by James Dean, who starred in multiple movies that year. People began replicating his style by wearing a white t-shirt, jeans, and a red jacket.

In the sixties, women’s fashion continued to stick towards the formal-yet-feminine style, with some inspiration from the new hippie-esque styles rising to popularity in the late sixties.  Men’s clothing took a complete opposite turn from women’s, as they transitioned from formal to more casual clothing.

The hippie look continued to be very popular throughout the seventies. Women wore bell-bottom jeans and maxi skirts and dresses and generally more flowy clothing than they had in the past. More and more people could be seen wearing soft and pastel colors.

However, by the late seventies, the disco look overtook the hippie look, and people began wearing tight and short clothes. Big, chunky heels were very fashionable as well as tube tops and spandex shorts became the norm. Men would also wear the disco look, but they also began to wear more sportswear and active wear.

The eighties were the flashiest and brightest year of fashion. People wore neon colors, leg warmers, and sported big and fluffy hairdo’s. The 80’s put emphasis and accessories and bright colors. Most of the fashion from the eighties had made a comeback to fashion today, like high-waisted jeans and ripped jeans.

In the 1990’s, there was a variety of different styles that people wore. People wore some styles from the previous decades, as well as new punk and grunge looks. Most of the looks were inspired by movies to form their preppy or punk look.

As for today, people wear styles that are very similar to the 80’s and 90’s. Ripped jeans have make a comeback, as well as the punk/grunge look of the 90’s. But the big thing about today’s fashion is that people are encouraged to wear whatever they think is stylish. Although there are certain things that are considered stylish, people can still wear whatever they want.