Double denim, the Canadian tuxedo, whatever you want to call it - it’s a strong look. Often ridiculed, denim on denim a difficult trend to rock, but is actually a lot easier to pull off than you might think. The idea of wearing more than one piece of denim clothing might make you recoil in horror, and you recall that iconic photo of Justin Timberlake and Britney Spears.
However, lot has changed since then. If you’re feeling ready to experiment with your style, but don’t want to stray too far from your uniform of jeans, you don’t have to.
The double denim look has been around for years and undoubtedly will stick around, carefully treading the line between irony and tragedy, with brands such as MSGM, Bobby Abley, Off-White and Proenza Schouler sending denim-clad models down the runway at Fashion Week.
Kaia Gerber at Off-White
Pastel Denim Cowboy at Bobby Abley
Still overwhelmed? Do not fear! Here is the Beyond Retro guide to styling denim on denim to help you make the most of all your favourite vintage denim pieces.
How To Wear Denim On Denim
1. Match your denim tones and add a print.
By matching denim tones your outfit will have a sleek, put together look - almost like a dressed down suit. (Chic, yet casj). Add a bold printed shirt or top to instantly lift it, then add accessories in the same tones to create a sleek palette for an even more impactful look.
2. Throw A Denim Jacket Over Your Denim Skirt.
In the summer, a vintage denim mini skirt is an instant go-to and one of the most versatile pieces in your wardrobe. This is a really easy way to get into the denim on denim trend as it combines two pieces you probably already have in your wardrobe and you can pair it with any kind of top you like - be adventurous with a vintage scarf halterneck or keep it classic with a graphic tee. Super cute.
3. Try A Mix 'n' Match.
If you struggle to find pieces in a similar tone then go in a different direction and look out for patchwork denim pieces. This is a fun way to style denim on denim and will give you an effortless but fashion-forward look. (Cardi B anyone?)
4. Stick To Black Denim.
5. Get Crafty and Do Some DIY.
There's nothing like finding a totally unique piece, and DIY-ing some denim is the perfect opportunity. Get your Youtube tutorials at the ready and go crazy. Turn jackets into crop tops, jeans into shorts or even just fray the edges of your denim to make them match.
6. Look For Coloured Denim.
Create a fun and summery look by keeping your eye out for pastel pieces of denim that you can wear together to create a sugary sweet look. Mix and match different colours of pastel denim if you're feeling adventurous or wear with a simple vest or shirt.
7. Co-ordinate Your Summer Essentials.
A vintage denim shirt is one of the most versatile pieces of clothing you can own, and in the summer is a great option that will take you from sunny days to balmy nights. Match your shirt with a denim maxi skirt for a super summery look with Western vibes - giddy up!
7. Black 'n' Blue.
This trend is supposed to be super laid-back and easy-going so if you don't have matching pieces, don't worry. Mix blue jeans with a black denim jacket (or vice versa). Pair with your favourite vintage Doc Martens and you're set.
If you're feeling inspired you can shop our wide selection of vintage denim jeans, denim jackets, skirts and dresses. If you want some more inspo then read our blog on perfect denim jackets for summer.
Naomi is a bonafide fashion icon, that is undisputed and with such an awe-inspiring style, of course, people will be looking to copy it. In a world of fast fashion some brands and celebrities, *cough cough* The Kardashians, try to imitate an iconic look without giving credit or making it clear they are paying homage.
A muse to many designers and seemingly ageless, Campbell continues to be flawlessly dressed and always pushing artistic boundaries with her looks. In a world of knock-offs, we believe in celebrating authentic vintage style and today we’re giving thanks to one of the industries biggest players. So here are our 10 favourite Naomi Campbell looks.
A vision in blue, we will always love a bit of double denim but Naomi went all out with these flared jeans and matching sequined denim bandeau. Summer party inspo? We think so!
A satin bias-cut skirt is a wardrobe staple for summer 2019 but Naomi knew this way before anyone else. The square tinted sunglasses and fur jacket are just the icing on the fashion cake that makes this look feel so effortless. Shop our selection of coloured lens sunglasses and midi skirts online and in-store.
Whilst she can do OTT like the best of them this Versace outfit from the ’90s is a sophisticated and fun look which is glamorous yet toned-down.
Safety Is Sexy
At Beyond Retro we are all about supporting important causes through fashion and 2003 Naomi in the rhinestone embellished halter emblazoned with the slogan ‘Use A Condom’ is the kind of thing we can get behind. The top was part of a collection used to support AIDs awareness by London Designer Katharine Hamnett.
All That Glitters
Floor-length, shimmering gown and Gianni Versace as your date; G L A M O U R!
Moss & Campbell; A Powerful Friendship
There’s a reason that so many ‘going-out’ inspiration Pinterest boards feature a billion pictures of Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell, this friendship is a serious fashion powerhouse. Not only are they style icons and supermodels but incredible business women.
Fashion Queen of England
A lot of British icons were present at the 2012 London Olympics and whilst our GB teams did well Naomi really showcased our homegrown talent. In a floor-length gown and towering heels, she took to the stage at the Olympic closing ceremony and stunned.
We love a good suit and this white two-piece looks so incredible on Naomi. An iconic 90’s look, the rectangle sunglasses turn this outfit up all the way to 11.
We definitely did not look this put-together on our 22nd birthdays but of course, Naomi managed to pull it off in a blue gingham dress with signature 90’s baby blue eyeshadow..
No Filter Needed
A legendary look, this Versace mini dress is exquisite and perfectly encapsulates Naomi’s icon status. Even the guy in the headset in the back of the picture can’t believe his eyes.
Words Eloise Gendry
Reliable, hard wearing and damn right stylish we all love a good pair of dungarees. Whether you rock the workwear revival or the 90s club kid, dungarees are a staple, but how much do we know about them? We give you a quick lesson in the humble dungaree as well as show you our favourite dungaree fashion moments.
When Were Dungarees Created?
The dungaree was first brought to light in 17th century India where the cloth used for making cheap, robust working clothes was called ‘Dungri,’ the Hindi name of the Indian village which produced this hardwearing fabric. By default when the English bought the cloth to make workwear trousers they took the name ‘Dungri’ and added a British twist naming the fabric, ‘dungaree. ‘
Fast forward to 1853, the bib and trousers came together to form the first overalls made out of ‘dungaree’ fabric. This was designed by Levi Strauss and his business partner Jacob Davis. (Which you can read more about in our History of Levis post.) This new form of clothing was ideal for hard labour and with the bib, it allowed the carrying of tools and eliminated the need for waist belts. They grew in such popularity across America that they soon became the standard clothing for the working man. They were even colour coded according to the profession of the wearer: hickory stripe for railroad workers, white for painters and different shades of blue for the rest of the working class.
The dungaree started to transcend the realms of manual labour when they were worn by Hollywood royalty, John Wayne, Clint Eastwood and even Judy Garland, turning the overall into a desirable garment.
Our Top 6 Dungarees Looks
1. Princess Diana
Yup, that’s right dungarees are for Princesses too! Forget posing for your royal portraits in ermine and a crown when you could rock the 80s pastel look in light denim dungarees!
2. Ronnie Wood
Ronnie shows us how to rock in dungaree in classic 70s style. Grab a more fitted pair and team them with a vintage tee and trainers. Mullet optional.
3. Dexys Midnight Runners
It's impossible to mention great dungaree look without mentioning Dexys Midnight Runners. Taking inspiration from the working class of Ireland they described their style as an, ‘off the farm look.’ Layered with knitwear and belted at the waist, the ‘farm look’ can be pretty cool.
4. Elton John
It seems the popularity of the dungaree and Elton John have resurged at the same time however this isn’t the first time the two have intertwined. Elton John is actually no stranger to dungarees rocking them up until the early 90s in perfect glam rock style.
5. Whitney Houston
This image of Whitney Houston looks like it could have been taken yesterday. Straight off current street style trends, Whitney rocks the dungaree with a Champion sweatshirt and bum bag. Not only do dungarees never go out of style but Whitney shows that it doesn’t take long for fashion to come full circle.
6. TLC vs NSYNC
The 90s wouldn’t be the 90s without a band in dungarees. Pick a band and we guarantee there will be a time when they wore dungarees in joyful unison. Two of our favourites are TLC and NSYNC where it doesn’t matter what colour or size you wear dungarees will always work.
Dungarees have stood the test of time from a simple piece of 17th-century cloth to the utilitarian and ultra cool garment worn by everyone from royalty to railroad workers. If you don’t have at least one pair of these wardrobe staples then check out our range online and in store. We guarantee you won’t want to take them off.
Words Hugo Harris
One of the biggest trends of 2019 has been head-to-toe dressing, taking your favourite colour and really going all out with the styling. Whether you’re a pastel princess or a lime-green lover this trend is versatile and can be tailored to suit your style.
Monochrome on the Catwalk
At fashion weeks across New York, London, Milan and Paris designers were tapping into this trend, from Fendi to Pam Hogg the hue-heavy looks kept coming. Whilst Adeam showed striking suits in block colours with matching shoes, Fendi did a slightly more pared-back version with a light, turquoise tulle look. Take a note from Carolina Herrera and up your monochromatic game by adding a pop of bright eyeliner to match the outfit. Once you’ve found your favourite shade then check out our range of coloured berets to make your outfit next-level chic.
How Celebrities Style Monochrome
Of course, the monochromatic style has been around for a while and Rihanna was rocking a gorge green version of this back in 2015; if a full head-to-toe look seems too daunting for you then maybe a coat/sunglasses/shoe combo might be an easier way for you to try this trend. Bella and Solange both turned heads in all-out yellow whilst Tessa Thompson looked H O T in all over red.
Top Instagram Monochrome Looks
We’re only human, Instagram is where we get a lot of our inspo and this trend has been everywhere. Going into spring, pastels will be the colour palette of choice to drench yourself in and boy do we have some styling inspiration for you. Previous Beyond Retro event panellist Tahmina Begum and Sophie Avalon look super sweet in pastel boilersuits whilst Anne Johannsen and Alicia Roddy opt for sugary blue hues. If pastels aren’t your thing green and yellow looks are a fail-safe which is bound to also brighten up your day.
If you’re wondering where to start with this trend, why not try a pair of colourful jeans and pair them with a jacket in a matching tone, this trend is all about fun so don’t worry if the colours don’t match exactly, mixing in a couple of different shades of the same colour will mean you can mix and match more. Accessories are also an easy way in, all you need to do is think of something you already own in your favourite colour and then go to town on our selection of sunglasses, hats, bags and belts.
For our head-to-toe campaign, we filled the Beyond Retro studio with colour and styled Rosie and Savannah in a rainbow of outfits. Whether you choose to block primary colours or mix and match printed pastels you can shop everything you need for a major monochromatic moment sustainably at Beyond Retro.
Inspired by our new trends? Check out our favourite animal print looks from the last century here.
Words Eloise Gendry
From punks to pop icons check, tartan, houndstooth and gingham are eternal favourites. Each type of fabric has a rich history and they continue to be updated every season, their popularity never faltering. We’ve taken inspiration from these fabrics and the likes of Gucci, Kenzo, Versace and Charles Jeffrey for winter, piling up kilts, plaid shirts and scarves.
Whether you choose to go all-out, head-to-toe, full-on with the trend or keep it more low-key by styling up a patterned piece we have some inspiration for you. Check out our Criss-Cross icons.
Probably one of the most iconic and memorable costumes from the film, Cher and Dionne’s plaid two piece looks still have us bugging out. Whilst the idea of wearing a completely tartan outfit might scare you as much as driving down the highway in a car driven by Dionne, style this look with a simple graphic tee underneath and it becomes easily wearable.
Former Sex Pistols manager, artist and musician Malcolm McLaren was an integral part of the London punk scene during the late seventies. His iconic look was truly rebellious, putting two fingers up to the fashion of the time.
A moment of silence for this outfit, please. Rachel was a style icon of the nineties, wearing some of the best outfits to ever grace the small screen and a haircut that many viewers would later regret copying. Possibly the preppiest she ever looked, this outfit is still inspirational today. The knee socks and roll neck perfectly compliment the plaid mini skirt in a kitsch and cute look that is super simple to replicate. You can shop our selection of laid skirts here.
From performing at Glastonbury to a day out with her baby there’s No Doubt that Gwen is a fan of a plaid pant. Suiting her punky, fusion style statement, red and green checks seem to be her go-to. Easily paired with chunky boots and a crop-top you can recreate this look in an instant.
Naomi Campbell is known to make an impression on the catwalk and Vivienne Westwood 1994 was no different, she graced fashion week head to toe in Scottish heritage tartan. The classic Westwood silhouette and the top to toe styling makes a real impact. Go all-out and shop our selection to create your own all-tartan look.
Aunt Viv, Fresh Prince Of Bel Air
Aunt Viv’s costumes were always impeccable, as was her hair and this yellow skirt suit is a perfect example exquisite looks she wore. Shop our selection of blazers here.
The People’s Princess
We all wish we could have raided Princess Diana’s wardrobe as she had such an iconic and versatile style that to this day is #goals. This teal check coat and hat combo is one of her most well-remembered and made an impact whilst also being very simple.
What’s more iconic than the classic Burberry check? Beyoncé in custom Burberry check. When Riccardo Tisci took over from Christopher Bailey he updated the brand’s logo and the check itself, making it more modern. Obviously, Queen Bey can do no wrong when it comes to her outfits but this stage look in particular deserves a round of applause.
A gingham-clad beauty, Judy Garland’s Dorothy is known for her iconic dress. The pale blue and white pattern perfectly suits the sweeter-than-pie character, especially with the matching hair bows. Gingham screams sunshine, summer and picnics in the park but a gingham skirt paired with a knitted jumper and boots can be a perfect transitional look.
Not one to shy away from a bold look, Gaga went all out with this monochrome houndstooth look. The pearls are the perfect finishing touch for this loud but feminine look.
Vans - the iconic skate shoe
The waffle-sole, checkerboard print Vans trainer might be more commonly connected nowadays with the spiked-belt-wearing indie/emo tribes of the early 2000s, but their roots lay firmly in a history of skateboarding. The black and white checkerboard design is a design classic and is still as popular as it ever was. Shop our selection of Vans here.
The late, great Alexander McQueen
One of the biggest designers that Britain has produced and a legend in his own right, McQueen created many collections inspired by his father's’ Scottish heritage that incorporated traditional tartan fabrics. Accompanied by Sarah Jessica Parker to the 2016 MET Gala, the pair looked dreamy in tartan creations, McQueen in a classic kilt and Parker in a tartan-wrapped ball gown extravaganza.
Liv Tyler, Empire Records
The ultimate girl crush, Liv Tyler…. Need we say more?
Audrey Hepburn, 1961
There are not many lists of style icons where Audrey Hepburn wouldn’t appear and this one is no different. Her pairing of colour coordinating green check skirt and polo top clash brilliantly with her opaque red tights, an elegant and fun twist on criss-cross styling.
The laundry bag.
THE biggest criss-cross icon is undoubtedly the humble laundry bag. A true unsung hero, the classic red and blue check has inspired designers and even been incorporated into collections from big brands such as Balenciaga. We stan a criss-cross legend.
Words Eloise Gendry
With fashion month in progress, there is inspiration all around and nowhere does fashion week quite like London. The fashion capital of the UK is home to some of the biggest brands like Burberry and Victoria Beckham, as well as the freshest new faces on the scene with talent incubators such as Fashion East. We all know that fashion recycles itself and nothing is really new but we love looking at a bit of inspiration for when we’re trawling through vintage rails.
With Milan and Paris still to come, we run down the biggest moments and hottest trends from LFW so you’re in the know for Autumn 2019.
Erdem - VB - Eudon Choi
We know top-to-toe is going to be a big trend for spring but carrying on into the autumn bold, red looks will be everywhere. Whilst Erdem’s iteration of this was girly and slightly gothic, Victoria Beckham went for a more structured approach and Eudon Choi showed a more tomboy-friendly style. Shop our newest red pieces here.
Streetstyle Spotlight; Flora Macdonald Johnston
Chloe Sevigny is a goth princess at Simon Rocha
Props to the casting director!
J.W. Anderson - Mary Katranzou - Natasha Zinko
Big bird meets fashion- one of LFW’s more outlandish trends was seen at J.W. Anderson, Natasha Zinko, Peter Pilotto, Roksanda and Ryan Lo just to name a few. Whether it’s an all-over statement piece or just an accent detail, feathery creations were on all the runways.
Streetstyle Spotlight; Susie Lau
Not your nana’s curtains, Susie looks pretty in pink in an Erdem dress.
Ashley Williams has built her brand on bold prints and striking graphics but this years signature print really had people talking. Williams’ sperm print hoodie, worn by Adwoa Aboah, was all over social media as soon as it went down the runway with punny captions galore.
Alexa Chung - Burberry - Pam Hogg
A trend that never seems to really disappear, leather touches toughen up girly skirts and create a statement when put together with soft knits. Whether you stick with a classic leather jacket or opt for a full on leather look we have vintage pieces ready to shop.
Streetstyle Spotlight; Eva Chen
Halpern - Molly Goddard - Ashley Williams
The party dress is back on runways this season and in a particularly fun shade of millennial pink. Whilst Halpern’s offering was a notably more grown-up approach, Molly Goddard and Ashley Williams showed versions that stuck to their irreverent and individual brands aesthetics. Goddards frothy, dreamy creations have been a fashion week favourite since the debuted in 2014 and this year their popularity has been unwavering. William’s version paired with bold red tights is a more punk styling, reminiscent of Iona from Pretty In Pink.
Natasha Zinko Takes Us Shopping
Whilst some brands will spend a large proportion of their show budget on creating an elaborate set, Natasha Zinko took a slightly different approach. Hosting the AW19 show at Next on Oxford Street, models walked through the shop and descended the escalators whilst a crowd of journalists and confused shoppers watched.
Emilia Wickstead - Richard Quinn - Molly Goddard
Leading on from the neon trend that swept fashion weeks and then the high-street, bright hues seem to be staying around. The particular colour of the moment is yellow. Pastel, neon, patterned, silky, lacy or embroidered this trend comes in many guises. Shop our selection of yellow pieces here.
Streetstyle Spotlight; Aaliyah Hayes
Fashion East’s newest alumni
Gareth Wrighton - Yuhan Wang - Charlotte Knowles
With previous designers including Gareth Pugh, House of Holland and Simone Rocha, Fashion East are known to present the best of the London fashion scene every year. Often recently graduated and new in the industry, Fashion East designers are always dynamic and boundary-pushing and this year's shows were no different.
J.W. Anderson - Simone Rocha - Erdem
Bubble skirts, voluminous dress and soft, rounded hemlines were seen on runways a lot this fashion week, bringing back elegant silhouettes that move gracefully around the models. Whilst this type of skirt might make you recoil in horror as you conjure images of the ’80s, this trend is definitely a more subtle approach than we have seen before with puffball skirts.
Words Eloise Gendry-Hearn
In the ever-changing landscape of fashion where trends come and go, few garments stand the test of time quite like the coveted cable knit.
The cable knit jumper has come a long way from its humble salty, maritime beginnings at the turn of the 19th century, where it was knitted by the Celtic clans and families of fisherman and seafarers.
Traditionally knitted from worsted wool, the knit is as functional as it is decorative: the weave is more durable and insulating than standard knitted fabric, and in its original incarnation, when it was woven from untreated wool with the natural lanolin oils preserved, it was almost water-resistant, able to withstand the turbulent weather of the open ocean.
The tightly knitted stand-up collar and cuffs kept out gale force winds. The cuffs were usually finished short of the wrist to avoid getting caught on fishing equipment and from becoming drenched in seawater as they worked, making this a garment dedicated to practicality.
The cable knits charms, however, stretch well beyond practicality alone. Legend has as it the ‘cable’ design originates from the ‘Arran jumper,’ where Celtic clans and families wove their own unique patterns into the jumper.
The cable design was thought to represent the fisherman’s rope and tools.
The Basket-knit sections were said to represent a fisherman's basket, as a good luck charm for a plentiful haul.
Variations in the knit were used to distinguish different clans or families, making it easier to allegedly identify the body of a drowned sailor. Romantic as it sounds this is the product of an old wives tale.
By the early 20th century, the cable knit started to make its move away from the fisherman’s docks and more frequently associated with gentlemanly pursuits of cricket and golf.
The demand for fashionable knitwear rose in the 1920s and due to mass production, the once carefully thought out weaves became less intricate, leading to the simpler versions we see today.
Since then the cable knit has taken its place as a casual staple, strongly associated with the preppy styles of Ralph Lauren, whose adoption of the cable knit, along with the polo shirt, has remained a key icon to the brand year after year.
Top 6 Cable knit moments
1. Although Elvis showcased how to wear the Cable Knit with a rock and roll edge in 1957s Jailhouse Rock, the humble knit saw its largest 20th-century resurgence in the ‘60s, pioneered by Irish group The Clancy Brothers.
5. The Cable found further iconography with female stars such as Marilyn Monroe in the 1960 film Let’s Make Love, which gave the knit an enduring sex appeal.
6. With a more subtle take, Jean Seberg wore an oversized knit that same year in the film Breathless, giving a beatnik charm to the modest cable knit.
Shop all our cable knits here
Words Hugo Harris
Start the year with a wardrobe refresh and upgrade your look with the biggest trends as seen on the runways at London Fashion Week: Men’s. From pastel suiting to acid house prints there’s something to suit your style and incorporate into your 2019 look.
Softer than classic tailoring, in more muted tones with rounded edges, this is the perfect style for any gent. Oliver Spencer enlisted the likes of Isaac Carew to present his idea of the new man, in plush velvet and heritage check. The collection was also designed with sustainability in mind; Spencer, we like your style! Amongst soft powdered hues, Feng Chen Wang also presented a similar style, smart trousers in classic pinstripe fabrics but with a rounder leg that gives a softer appearance than your average straight-leg. A simple style to incorporate into any wardrobe- shop our selection of suiting here.
Soft pastel tones were seen on the catwalks across LFWM in various forms but all were just as sweet and often tapped into the colour-drench trend of previous seasons.. Bobby Abley pastel pink cowboy was a hit as was Craig Greens signature layered sets, created in a powdery salmon pink; Phoebe English mixed things up, layering soft lavender hues over a more vibrant blue shirt. Another quick fix for changing up your look for AW19- try a pastel shirt over your favourite pair of bleached jeans. Or if a full pastel outfit is too much for you, try adding a pop of pastel with some socks or a simple tee shirt. Shop our selection of pastel menswear here.
Take A Hike
A standout trend from this season is the latest iteration of the normcore trend, this time spun with an outdoors, going camping, vibe. Think your-dad's-patagonia-windbreaker, with cargo pants, utility jackets and neatly finished with a dad-trainer for good measure. A-Cold-Wall* and Cottweiler kept things current by adding in a touch of colour whilst Raeburn and Paria Farzaneh kept it classic in khaki tones. Whether you want to give a nod to the ’80s with vibrant colourways or prefer the classic army colours, the key piece for this look is the right jacket- you can shop our selection of windbreakers here. Love it or hate it, normcore seems to be sticking around.
Loud and proud, neons came in different forms across London Fashion Week; Men’s, in unexpected and diverse ways. A-Cold-Wall* went all out in highlighter orange suiting whilst Pronounce used punchy pink piping to punctuate their muted neutral offerings. Chalayan’s relaxed sweatpants included a splatter of neon yellow, whilst Alex Mullins created a futuristic cowboy look with a bright pink western shirt. Be sure to stand out in 2019 and shop our selection of neon pieces.
It wasn’t just the neon palettes transporting the frows back to 80’s raves- bright colours, bold graphics and tie-dye effects were also spotted across runways. With James Long at the helm, Iceberg imagined a “punky mountain” alpine getaway, laden with archive prints and throwback colourways. Fashion East alumnus Liam Hodges took his signature streetwear in a more acidic direction with tie-dye and spray paint prints, whilst new kid on the block Mowalola debuted a psychedelic collection bursting with colour and eye-popping prints. Get your 80’s fix with our designer vintage selection.
The cosiest trend of them all, classic knits are back on the runway for AW19. Fairisle, striped, chunky, Nordic; all manner of jumper styles made an appearance this season. Lou Dalton’s stand out look incorporated a matching scarf to double up on the grandpa look whilst Astrid Andersen’s take comes in turquoise with black blocking to modernise the piece. This is the ultimate trend for the style-conscious but lazy. Add to a pair of vintage track pants for a sporty twist or simply wear with jeans and a pair of Doc Martens for an effortless, cosy look.
Words Eloise Gendry
Cue David Bowie- FASHION, yes it’s that time of year again...London Fashion Week, and my goodness it’s shaping up to be a fabulous one. From the rightfully crowned year of the dress to the #metoo movement, it’s safe to say it’s been one of the most exhilarating fashion years to date - and this is definitely something which we found when roaming the streets of London. Whether you’re an outlandishly obscure style-style dresser or a die hard 50’s fan, there’s a place for you at fashion week. We headed down to capture all the style-savvy souls to bring you our favourite looks for the new season.
Yes, it may be September and usually, we're already thinking about the deep depth of winter, but not this year. With the mass heatwave we’ve been experiencing, all we can think of is colour. Bright colours make their way into the new season, with a focus on, yes that’s right...pink!
From power pink to pastel, shop pink online
Whether you’re a busy businessman or a flamboyant fashion student this trans-seasonal piece can be enjoyed by pretty much anyone! We’re loving this purple checked piece worn by the international editor of Vogue, Hamish Bowles.
Your power look awaits, big up your suit game with a vintage blazer.
A statement coat is something everyone should possess, and winter always calls for some fur action. At this year’s fashion week we have seen a colour full array of faux fluff - from cute capes to hooded coats this is one way to stay warm but still stylish this winter.
You can shop for more statement coats online
Bold prints are the lifeline of any vintage fashion lover from animal print to abstract, this trend lets your love of colour and design flourish!
Seeing the world through rose tinted glasses just hit every other person at Fashion Week. From rosey peach 90s inspired frame to an array of green and yellow hues - we’re into it. Complete your look with some vintage-inspired sunglasses.
Here's a look at some of our other street style saviours from LFW SS 19
Words Jessica Doolan
For something that came and went in the space of two years (and which some even claim never even happened at all), New Romantic's influence was decidedly far-reaching. It spawned some of the 80s most famous pop stars, from Boy George to Spandau Ballet, and launched some of the decade's most remembered trends; sharps suits, flamboyant makeup and power silhouettes. The original New Romantic movement though was ephemeral, difficult to define and the product of an amalgamation of influences, from decadent Wiemar Berlin to Bowie.
What is the New Romantic Look?
Burned by the commodification of punk, the next generation of subcultures strove to evolve fast, dropping trends as soon as they were identified.
"...nobody would ever call themselves a New Romantic. Not just that, but nobody even knew what to call it. Were they Blitz kids? Were they Bowie kids? Were they futurists? As soon as anyone was called a New Romantic in the press, they'd instantly do an interview to deny that they were New Romantic. As soon as frilly shirts were identified as being a part of the New Romantic kit, bands immediately stopped wearing them." - Journalist Dave Rimmer interviewed in Vice.
Nevertheless, there are still certain elements of '80s fashion that can be firmly established as New Romantic. The lavish materials of the subculture's period costume influences, the flamboyance of glam, androgyny and blending of the genders, dandyish smart suiting, 1940s broad shouldered shapes and the fetish and leather influences of punk.
New Romantic Cultural Moments
Bowie Nights at Billy's Club
The subculture began simmering in 1978 when Steve Strange and Rusty Egan began holding 'Bowie Nights' at Billy's Nightclub in Soho. In reaction to the prescriptive look that some perceived punk had become thanks to its mainstream appeal, teenagers and art school students began looking back to glam rock, and even further back to the dandies and ruffles of the Romantic era in order to find something with more glamour. This is where the scene incubated, a middle ground between punk and New Romantic.
By 1979, the night had moved to the Blitz Club in Covent Garden. The door policy demanded originality and attitude (rumour has it they once turned Mick Jagger away) influenced by Bowie's spirit of constant reinvention. A precursor to the club kids of the 1990s, Blitz kids strove to reinvent their dramatic looks every week - another reason why the trend is so hard to pin down. By Blitz, the subculture was fully formed. Nights at Blitz were frequented by the likes of Spandau Ballet, Boy George, Dylan Jones and Princess Julia.
David Bowie's Ashes to Ashes
Just as Bowie influenced the Blitz kids, the musician took influence back, paying Steve Strange and other Blitz kids £50 each to star in this decidedly New Romantic music video, styled in ecclesiastical robes.
Emerging directly out of the Blitz club, Spandau Ballet took New Romantic mainstream and are credited as being the band who once again 'made it hip to play pop'.
Boy George's First Appearance on TOTP
The Culture Club's first performance on British television with 'Do You Really Want to Hurt Me' in October 1982 looks fairly unremarkable by today's standards, but Boy George's androgynous appearance, though a hit with fans, caused a furore in the press.
The Naked Civil Servant
Airing in 1985 on ITV, the Quentin Crisp biopic fit right into the New Romantic movement thanks to John Hurt's dandyish portrayal of openly gay writer and raconteur Crisp, who wore makeup and nail polish day to day in the 1940s, when homosexuality was a criminal offence.
Leigh Bowery and Taboo
By the mid-80s the Blitz Club had given way to the far more subversive Taboo, run by performance artist Leigh Bowery. The polysexual, drag-influenced night marked the end of New Romanticism in club terms and paved the way for Club Kid nights like New York's Limelight and Disco 2000.
New Romantic Icons and Inspiration
The original Blitz kid, Strange's look spanned slick tailoring and Pierrot and pirate costumes.
No-one made New Romanticism's androgynous aspects as famous as Boy George, known in his Blitz days by his real name - George O'Dowd.
The fashion writer and muse to milliner Stephen Jones was rarely seen at the club without an elaborate hat.
British photographer Derek Ridgers has been documenting social scenes and subcultures since the early '70s from punk to Sink the Pink. New Romantic fashion inspiration can be found in his beautiful book 78/87 London Youth (if you can get your hands on it). Otherwise, try Pinterest.
From Club to Catwalk
Thanks to the many Saint Martins students frequenting Blitz, the movement influenced the collections of several hot young British designers, including...
The British milliner owes thanks to his nights spent dancing at Blitz Club for some of his first clients... including Boy George and John Galliano.
Created in 1982 by Stevie Stewart and David Holah, Bodymap was inspired directly by the club scene and designed both to stand out and to dance in. Blitz Kids and celebrities such as Boy George, Michael Clark, Leigh Bowery and Marilyn wore their designs down the New York runways.
Galliano was studying at St Martin's in the early '80s and came of age at clubs like Blitz and Taboo. You can see New Romantic's dandy influence in the designer's graduate collection - Les Incryoables - named after the original dandies of 18th Century France.
Although the designer was decidedly a punk, dressing the Sex Pistols and married to the band's manager Malcolm Maclaren, you can see the conversation between the two subcultures in Westwood's work. Her first collection, 'Pirates' in 1981, had an undeniable influence on ex-punk Adam Ant's look circa Kings of the Wild Frontier, released the same year.
How to Wear the 1980s Trend Today
The 1980s are back with a bang on the A/W 18 runways. Here's how to update the New Romantic style influences for the party season ahead with some well selected vintage items.
Look out for opulent textures - lace, velvet, brocade, leather, anything that will catch the flash of an Instagram snap.
Girls in suits, boys in lace, lashings of eyeliner and big-shouldered blazers for everyone. Shop both sections of the store so you don't miss out on that statement piece.
Nipped in waists, tapered jeans, frilly high-necked blouses, big, big shoulders and an incredible hat to top it off. Tailoring is also an important element of this 80s revival. Suits, preferably checked, are ideal, along with waistcoats layered under jackets and partially undone neckties.
Ready to hunt down some eighties pieces of your own? Shop our New Arrivals.
Get some inspo for re-creating Bowie’s Ashes to Ashes look with our blog on Religious Iconography in Fashion.
Take a look at any Instagram influencer or fashion brand’s mood board and you’re likely to find endless amounts of 90s pop culture icons, whether it be a grunge-inspired Nirvana flannel situation or a strong sports style inspired Britpop bands such as Oasis and Blur. With trends like tie-dye and DIY cut off shorts making heavy appearances, it’s no wonder that these throwback looks have become the ultimate Summer staple.
The Resurgence Of 90s Trends
Since late 2013, aspects of 90s culture have filtered their way back into the mainstream. Gone were the low rise jeans of the early 2000s, the bravest trendsetters were digging out their mom jeans, some being worn for the second time around. Accessories such as bucket hats and tattoo chokers came back in full force and people began stomping around in old-school Converse and Doc Martens again. Fast forward to 2018 and it’s become quite obvious that the nineties is here to stay. Check out some 90s summer pop culture fashion inspiration below!
Our 5 Favourite Understated 90s TV Style Pop Culture Icons
Ally McBeal, Ally McBeal
There’s no doubt that Ally McBeal had the workwear wardrobe of our dreams. In clean 90s shapes in simple block colours, it was both aspirational and totally wearable, with accessories and shoes to truly make it pop.
Xander, Buffy The Vampire Slayer
When you think of Buffy, sometimes Xander gets left in the shadow of Angel and Spike (do vampires have shadows or do they just not have reflections?), but one of our favourite members of the Scooby Gang has some truly great normcore looks.
Chandler Bing, Friends
Chandler’s casual clothing was always something to be desired, though we just didn’t know it at the time. From plain tees layered under shirts, plaid patterns to single block colour jumpers: this dude also had the normcore look down.
Miranda, Sex And The City
If you were to ask anyone about their favourite Sex And The City character, 9 times out of 10 they’d say, Samantha. However, Miranda had some fab 90s dresses as well as great tailored pieces, and always accessorised exactly right.
The Banks’, The Fresh Prince
Although Will was undoubtedly the king of this show, The Banks’ had some pretty suave style themselves. From Carlton’s chino shorts to Ashley’s entire teenage look, this wealthy Bel Air family certainly had some cash to splash on their wardrobes.
How To Wear The Looks
Bright colours were signature in the 80s through to the 90s, with bold citrus colours and gaudy patterns making many appearances. Think old school bowling alleys and leisure centre decor and you’re pretty much there, inspired by Saved By The Bell and The Fresh Prince.
Because maybe, sportswear is gonna be the one that saves me. And after all, there’s no need for a football. Get the 90s Britpop look with vintage brands such as Fila, Adidas, Nike and more.
Inspired by Carlton Banks, Ally McBeal, and Miranda: these 90s summer clothing looks are both versatile and stylish. Think sharp tailoring in comfy fabrics. Men need to invest in some vintage chinos and branded shirts, with the ladies opting for co-ord suits with a casual top and dresses.
Here’s one for the Chandler Bings. Think solid block colours in natural and nude tones, no obvious patterns or branding, with loose fitting shapes and styles. It’s effortless, inoffensive and timeless.
Guys, if you’re feeling adventurous throw on a simple Hawaiian shirt for the ultimate dad look, and don’t forget those sandals! Check out our Guide to Hawaiian Shirts for some classic 90s pop culture inspiration.
Although every high street chain imaginable has hopped onto the 90s resurgence, there’s nothing better than shopping the originals from your favourite vintage stores. Take a look below and peep some fabulous ‘fits that you can easily recreate yourself using bits from Beyond Retro and the contents of your wardrobe.