Saturday, September 10, 2005

Revenge of the 80s

You may have heard the somewhat nasty rumor that trends of the 80s are coming back in style. You may be conjuring images of neon colors, guidette hair and wigwam socks. Before you set your tasers to suicide, read on.

There are many vestiges of the 80s that will mercifully remain dead, but there was a lot that the 80s got right. The theme for the decade was excess, and so everything you were supposed to wear was BIG. That theme has been carried over into the accessory department, for example, the bracelet at left. Yep, that's one bracelet, but it also accomplishes the 80s carryover of more than one bracelet at a time. Bangles, too, are back in style, but with a more modern flair - wavy, rhinestone or wooden bangles have replaced the hideous gold ones you used to wear. The modern flair at left is the reintroduction of metallics, and in this case it has a brassy look. The rule remains: too much of any one thing is a bad thing, no matter how good it is. Make sure you pair your flashier items with calmer things. The 80s, as you know, ignored that.

The off-the-shoulder shirt is back again, but in the 80s it didn't matter if you looked trashy; in the 21st century, it does. Now, you remember that if a shirt is too busy (meaning too many patterns or ideas) then it looks bad. Consider the off the shoulder aspect of the shirt one of those things. You already have an obvious quality - don't add more. A striped off the shoulder makes you look like a sailor. Don't do it! Add polka dots and you turn into Grandma Wilson. Don't do that, either! If anything, add a tasteful brooch to it, but that's it, and I mean it! That's how you keep it from looking ridiculous. See here on our model the same idea. Now, she has paired her plain shirt with a patterned skirt, which perks the outfit up perfectly, and she's wearing minimal accesories. She's not too busy - she's got the right idea!

The bottom line is that you can wear 80s trends without returning to the decade of greed. Our decade, I hope, will be characterized by maturity and classic beauty, so don't ruin it for the rest of us! And now, just for your entertainment, a nice shot of what not to look like:
Don't let this happen to you!

P.S. That bracelet is available thanks to the good people at, a great place to find the celebrity-wear you crave.