the 90’s

by sophie

The other night a good friend had a leaving party. It was 90’s themed. Oh the 90’s. I grew up during the 90’s. The fashion was very hit and miss, in that some items I still like, others I like only in a nostalgic way, and some things are just horrendous.

First of all. Pulp platform sneakers. I never had any, but a friend did. When she wore them she was taller than everyone, which gave her super street cred. I was a bit on the fence about them when I was younger, but now I’m definitely yay for platforms. Although a bit unsure about the sneakers part.

These are pretty similar to ol’ Baby Spice’s platforms.

DIY converse platforms. Here’s me, pretty impressed.

I’ve given it some thought and I do actually like these Prada platforms. Although the bottom layers remind me of the foam boards that you use at swimming class.

Although I never watched Sex and the City during the 90’s, I’ve watched all of it since then. The 90’s clothes are freaking classic. Makes me nostalgic for a New York 90’s that I was never a part of. And never will be.

Of all the characters, Miranda seems to be the one who is fashionably challenged. She gets much better in the later episodes when she stops looking so….butch.

My look for the 90’s party was an homage to Carrie’s in this picture. Pretty wrap-around dress with fun features. Mine was pink and had a mix of tartan, strange graffiti and gothic writing. I genuinely like it, although I’m sure others thought I was playing the fool. Worn with bright pink lipstick.

I definitely thought Carrie’s simpler looks were better, like this pretty trench style dress. Her ‘strange’ looks I was not so fond of…

Belting your bare midriff. What is that. Is she belting in her stomach? Weird….. That was the great thing about Carrie. She would wear weird stuff – sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn’t. But she didn’t care! Cause that’s what the 90’s were about. Being a woman and making choices and being empowered. And sometimes looking odd.

Here’s Carrie in the 2000’s when she remembered how to use a belt appropriately. Love the green combo. The light coat is especially nice.

Speaking of feminism. Girl Power = The Spice Girls.

Growing up, these 5 women were my idols. My friends and I memorised their songs, made up dances to them, and of course, played with our Spice Girl barbie dolls. Oh yeah. I always had to be Posh Spice because we looked similar, but my favourite Spice was Geri. She was wild and outspoken and made ginger work for her. Despite the somewhat generic mode in which the Spice Girls came to exist, they were fabulous and really gave redefining femininity a good go.

I also really like the kind of body image the Spice Girls promoted. Sure they were thin, but they weren’t sticks. Geri and Scary particularly have curvier bodies, which is a much better image to sell to young girls than what is currently available. Here’s me defending my childhood values.

They had fun with their fashion; a lot of which bordered on costume. They built up their characters with how they dressed; Baby looking cute, Scary wearing animal print, Sporty wearing, well sportswear. I always thought she had the worst deal. Posh, was posh. And now she’s wafer thin. And Geri had a lot of pro-britain wear.

A bit later on in the 90’s there was Buffy. Similar agenda to the Spice Girl’s empowerment, which of course was a re-establishment of the Feminist movement in the 70’s — but commercialised. My mum used to let me watch Buffy when I was about 10, on channel four, which had patchy reception at best. But I loved it.

For me, Buffy has definitely stood the test of time. There’s just something about a female action hero that is so good. Like Uma Thurman in Kill Bill. Super good. I have all seven seasons on DVD and it’s my go-to watch whenever I’m a bit down. Cause at least I don’t have to fight monsters in my spare time. Although I kind of wish I had those fighting skills.

A few more good things in the 90’s.

Kurt Cobain. Grunge style. Pretty sure Boyfriend has that exact old man cardigan.

Clueless. Quintessential 90’s girl movie. I love the part in the film where she choses what to wear on her really ‘hi-tec’ computer that makes up a matching outfit for her. I thought that was pretty rad when I was younger. Oh the knee high socks, the tartan mini-skirts, spaghetti strap dresses. Things you probably would never wear now.

Friends. In the 90’s when it was still good. The fashion is definitely questionable. Checkered maxi dress with spaghetti straps. Oh Monica. And Chandler, a mustard shirt with vest combo… Last night someone said ‘it’s like in that Friends episode…you can always relate life to Friends.’ So true.

Things that weren’t so good in the 90’s.

Hanson. Good lord. The long-haired trio. I remember my brother had their cassette tape and used to sing, what he called, ‘My wing on a wiggle.’ Not sure what the actual song name was. Also a friend had a t-shirt with Hanson on it, that was pretty badass at the time.

Now this. I can’t claim to know what this is. But whatever it is, it is awful. Some kind of 80’s throw-back in the 90’s, complete with hammer pants, neon and bad hair. And really terrible border art. Hmm.

And finally, denim. Denim in the 90’s was not to my taste at all. This 90210 ensemble is particularly enlightening. Light shades, high waisted, but ill-fitting. Not good.

And my particular favourite….

This just really sums up everything wrong with the 90’s. Denim with denim is bad enough for a start. But then, it’s Britney and Justin when they were still together. Wearing matching denim and denim and denim. A denim bustier, denim patchwork dress. Denim handbag. Denim jacket, denim jeans, denim-coloured shirt. And a denim cowboy hat to really cap it off. I freaking love this photo. But really what were they thinking. Or what were their stylists thinking?

I’ve got to say. As my childhood, nostalgic decade; it’s pretty damn good. Even the bad, it’s so bad that’s it’s good. Love it.