Looking back, it seems wholly illogical that anyone strapped on a pair of platform shoes and thought ‘Yup, these really are the finishing touch my outfit demanded.’ Equally, we have to wonder what leaps of rational thought were made when someone looked at a pair of ladies straight cut jeans and said ‘these would look cracking with further denim involved. Let’s get more denim on this outfit. Where’s my denim jacket?’
But we were only following the trends. We weren’t to blame for these fashion oddities. But who were the trendsetters we had so much faith in when it came to these fashion quirks?
Wearing our underwear on the outside
Okay, we weren’t quite sporting the Superman-look here, but we were well on our way. It was Madonna who made underwear as outerwear famous in the nineties with her cone-shaped corset designed by Jean Paul Gaultier (thankfully, this garment never met the high street). Lindsay Lohan was also once seen on the catwalk with a black corset top layered over a white shirt — paired with a bootcut jean of course. In 2018, we’ve seen the Kardashians bring the trend back with a ‘mini corset’ worn around the waist to show off curves over a loose shirt dress. Other celebrity influencers have also taken on the trend, although they’re not as big as some of the trends we’ve seen.
A safer, but still quirky alternative fashion trend from the era was denim overalls. A low-maintenance look made famous by the Fresh Prince and other nineties celebs. If you wanted to look uber cool, you’d wear it with one strap undone.
Cropped trousers were cool, and they were functional — we only had to shave the lower half of our legs to flaunt this look. For a jean — pedal pushers were definitely in and they were either denim or a pale pastel shade. This denim trend was rocked by fashionistas at the time including the Spice Girls and Christina Aguilera. It seems this one is coming back around too, with many celebrities sporting their designer cropped jeans – Jennifer Lawrence wore them with heels and a sheer top for Dior’s SS17 Paris show and Selena Gomez has been spotted in a pair, teamed with patent loafers and a casual white shirt.
A variant of this trend was cropped combat trousers. British girl band, All Saints, was a fan of this fad and rocked cargo pants, crop tops (having your midriff on show in the 90s was compulsory too, apparently) and trainers with the tongue out of the trouser leg.
Another trend came in the form of the beloved two-piece tracksuit. It was Britney Spears, Jennifer Lopez and Paris Hilton who started this trend off. Britney even had her bridal party dressed in two-piece tracksuits ahead of her wedding to Kevin Federline. Then, they became slightly over-worn by more Z-list celebs and fell off the radar…
Crocs got nothing on these beauts….
The Spice Girls looks amazing in platform shoes, right? And we wanted to look amazing too. Whether they were white tennis shoes, lace-up boots or sandals, they had to have a huge platform to allow you to stomp around. We’ve seen this trend return with Rihanna’s range of Puma platformed trainers and (for something more alternative) Gucci’s rainbow platform metallic sneakers that are currently on sale.
Platform shoes were marginally more comfortable than another footwear trend of the nineties — jelly shoes. How could we forget jelly shoes? It is thought that they were invented due to a leather shortage during World War II, leading to a French shoemaker creating shoes from plastic. This is one of the trends that has come and gone throughout the years, with a surge of the shoes in 2002 and another rise to popularity in 2009.
We may not be entirely free of these fashion trends, as they have a tendency to return. And, there’s bound to be many more fads to come that we’ll cringe at before buying into.