Fashion Journal: 1980-1989

The 1980s were a turbulent time in the fashion world- a celebration of bright apparel and big, curly puffed-up hair. Everything about the 80s was colorful- the makeup, the nails, and of course, the clothes. I think one of the biggest key words we can use to describe the 1980s is “glamour”, not only for women’s fashion, but also as a celebration of androgyny in the pop industry. I have some super fun, electric outfits picked out for today’s fashion journal, and I’m so excited to talk about these looks!

Left: 1980s Doc Marten Boots

There are certainly a lot of 80s trends that did not age well, but Doc Martens is an exception. This popular punk boots have evolved to remain both relevant and stylish, not only for the punk community, but for everyone. In the 80s, Doc Martens were worn by both sexes, and usually paired with back-combed hair, a ton of eyeliner, and fishnets. The Doc Martens brand has survived into the 2010s, now with more modern additions and embellishments. The modern Docs on the right have been embellished with faux flowers, and are studded along the exterior of the shoe. I love that although the brand has changed, Doc Marten has remained true to their aesthetic and overall look.

Left: Argentine music group in 1986

Like I said, the 1980s were a time for geometric patterns and vibrant color combos. The sudden popularity of aerobics played a large role in this desire for colorful clothes, along with the youthful, influential power of Madonna. Slim mini skirts, leather gloves, and dresses worn with thin belts were a large part of this colorful trend, as we can see in the picture on the left. On the right, this modern top from Anthropologie has clearly taken a lot of inspiration from the 1980s, especially from the geometric, loose-fitting-on-top style! Even the color schemes in the two pictures are similar: lots of bright oranges and reds, clashing with an array of blues and greens. The top on the right also comes with a matching, tight-fitting skirt, which would also be very historically accurate to the 1980s.

Left: High-waisted acid-wash jeans from the 1980s

Another fashion that was popular with both sexes was acid-wash jeans. These jeans were influenced by the heavy metal movement, and were worn high-waisted and slightly baggy. Denim jackets were also often worn with acid-wash jeans, because as you may have guessed, being matchy-matchy in the 80s was considered very stylish! The 1980s is also when ripped jeans became popular, and is a trend that we can still see flourishing today. The picture on the right shows a pair of modern acid-washed jeans, which are also pre-made to be ripped. This particular practice was inspired by the glam-rock movement, and specifically, the music act Poison was very crucial to popularizing this. The biggest difference between the 80s jeans and the modern jeans are the cut- the modern style jeans are much tighter on the model, and are also much more low-cut. Even as the shape in jeans has changed with the times, the inspiration from heavy metal and glam rock is still present in these edgy, acid-bleached bottoms.


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