With the world on halt due to COVID-19, it’s no wonder fashion this year has borrowed some of it’s best ideas from the past. Clothes this year borrow looks from as far back as the 1830s and as recent as the 1990s. Check out six of yesterday’s latest contributions to today’s fashion with our guide to the 2020 vintage season!
This fun 1980s look is making a reappearance in the vintage fashion circuit this year. Oversized blazers with shoulder pads are back on the street and better than ever. The boxy silhouette is swanky and geometric, with a professional flavor that you can lean into in the workplace and remix on the weekends. Plaids are also big this year for blazers and coats, as is mixing and matching colors and patterns. This makes it easy to wear your blazer with just about anything, giving you the opportunity to create a unique look that’s all your own.
You can pair them with high-waisted trousers and heels for a sharp business look or a miniskirt and sneakers for chich streetwear. You can also wear them with jeans and a t-shirt for an everyday outfit that’s casual and cute, with an extra dose of retro charm. When the weather gets cold, oversized blazers can also serve as a fashion-forward substitute for your usual fall jackets. Try layering them over your sweaters and collared shirts to lean into the academic-prep side of vintage fashion.
Social distancing might keep you safe from coronavirus, but masks can’t stop you from catching the disco fever! Get ready to get your groove on this year, because the 1970s are making a comeback. Wide, pointy disco collars are big this year for button-down shirts and blazers, especially in the unlikely colors and funky patterns the ’70s were known for. If you’re not a suit kind of person, flowy bohemian dresses are also back in, as are bell bottoms. That loose silhouette is breathable and fun, making it perfect for the summer and fall. Also back from the ’70s is crochet. Look out for lots of crochet dresses, shirts, sweaters, and purses.
This ’70s trend is vintage fashion at it’s most flashy and most fun, so go ahead and raid your parents’ closets or head to a thrift store to get your groove on this year!
There are two things that emerge from their hibernation every twenty years or so and take over the summer: cicadas and tube tops. From their origin in the ’50s to their revival in the ’70s to the revival of the revival in the ’90s and early 2000s to the revival of the revival of the revival in the 2020s, each generation that rediscovers the tube top makes this iconic summer piece their own.
Wear your tube top with high-waisted shorts for casual summer fun, or dress it up with a blazer and pleated pants for a cutting-edge look straight off the runway. If you’re not comfortable showing that much skin in your streetwear, but still want to try this vintage fashion look, tube tops are a huge swimsuit trend this year, too!
Bad hair day? No problem! Hair wraps are all the rage this year. You can wear your hair scarf wrapped over your hair like a pirate, a la the 1970s, or wrap your scarf under your hair and tie it up on top for a 50s-inspired vintage look. You can also wrap them over your head and under your chin like Audrey Hepburn. Complete the look with big sunglasses–another vintage piece in style this year!
Hair scarves are a fun accent to any outfit, especially in fun colors and patterns! Printed silk scarves are going to be particularly popular. They have a special vintage aesthetic and are lightweight and gentle on hair. This vintage fashion trend is cute, convenient, and looks great on everyone, with hair of any length, color, or texture!
Puffy sleeves have been popular in a lot of different ways and in a lot of different times…and all those styles have converged to make 2020 the Year of the puffy Sleeve.
Bishop sleeves–aka lantern sleeves–start slim in the shoulder and get wider as they move down the forearm, ending in a tight cuff near the wrist. These teardrop-shaped sleeves were popular in the 1830s and again in the 1860s. They returned as a big look for 1930s movie starlets, and again with hippies in the 1960s. Bishop sleeves are returning yet again in 2020, adding a unique silhouette to dresses, crop tops, and button-downs. Wear your bishop-sleeve tops with high waisted jeans for a classic look that’s both striking and whimsical.
Bishop sleeves aren’t the only vintage fashion trend rocking the poof. Back and better than ever are 1980s-inspired sleeves with puff up on the shoulder and upper arm. You might recognize these sleeves from your mom’s prom photos. I guess mother really does know best because these sleeves have come back to the future to rock the fashion world in 2020. You can find new dresses and shirts with the 80’s sleeve online, or find similar items in thrift stores. Who knows, maybe you’ll find your next favorite dress in the back of your mom’s closet!
That’s right, your dad’s favorite shoes are now the latest trend in vintage fashion. Long associated with upper-class menswear, pairing loafers with a dress or a funky, out-of-the-box outfit is a cool way to subvert traditional norms. Brown, black, or white loafers are always a classic, and look good with just about anything. If you’re feeling adventurous, try them in pastels or bold colors!
Not only are loafers practical, comfortable, and easy to slip on, they’re also extremely versatile. Wear as a pair of trendy loafers as a comfortable substitute for heels at work, or use them to make a casual jeans-and-t-shirt outfit slightly more sophisticated. Whether you rock them in the office or out on the town, loafers will be soon your go-to shoes for wherever you go.
Which of these vintage fashion looks do you want to try? Share your favorites in the comments below!