It’s often said that fashions come and go – but some things have a staying power that make them more than just a flash in the pan.
Fashion is such a fickle beast. What’s in one week will invariably out the next. The goal posts change to regularly it’s practically impossible for even the top designers and haute couture fashionistas to keep up. It’s not so much a cat walk as a frantic dash to stay one step ahead of the meretricious fashions and trends.
The truth is, of course, that you can’t. Sartorially, we’re constantly kept on our toes. And the continuously shifting and unpredictable winds of what’s hot and what’s not leave those with a penchant to keep our finger on the fashionable pulse forever teetering on the precipice of sartorial uncertainty.
There are, however, certain fashions, styles and motifs that will never fade. Designs, motifs, concepts and even fashionable ideas that transcend the boundaries of time.
So forget the fads, trample over the trends, and diss the designers. A cursory look through the history of fashion reveals there are certain approaches never go out of style.
As fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent so articulately and perceptively said, ‘Fashions fade, style is eternal.’ Here are a few over-the-years fashions that more than back up his canny observation.
Black Dresses Forever
Breakfast At Tiffany’s broke the mould and paved the way for so many iconic fashion statements – least of all Audrey Hepburn’s raven Givenchy frock, whose LBD (little black dress, for the uninitiated) has become the dress-inspiring staple for generations of women since.
If you don’t own one, there’s nothing to stop you, with high street chains making available this classic number to everyone with a penchant to chicness and style. And though we live in budget-conscious times, paring back on the pennies when it comes to recreating this effortlessly elegant look is not really an option – cheaper shops generally just won’t cut the mustard. A wisely spent few extra pounds will definitely pay off, and you’ll have a Hepburn-style dress that will keep you looking stylish the rest of your life.
Marlon Brando, James Dean, Grace Kelly - there’s something about the stars and styles of the 50s and 60s that made a deep and profound impact at the time and continues to resonate to this day. Marilyn Monroe, of course, was the ultimate progenitor of that generation’s fashion revolution, and her hourglass figure helped in no insignificant part.
Men wanted her, women wanted to be her, and the scintillating sexy Miss M proved that the hourglass shape looks fantastic on any woman. Of course, not every woman has the shape, but if you’ve been blessed with Monroe-esque cruves, take advantage of it. Otherwise, buy clothes that tuck in and draw attention to that area, or a good belt or high waisted skirt.
No Such Thing As Perfect
The constant and obsession quest for perfection – whatever that is – has become a fervent and somewhat tiresome one. The ubiquity of TV shows and magazines that constantly pervade the myth of the perfect look, incessantly casting doubt, insecurity and potential, perhaps inevitable, damage on the minds and bodies of a burgeoning generation of image-conscious and apprehensive youngsters, is a despicable one.
But these bilious digressions aside, there are a few celebrities who have embraced the imperfect, dishevelled look. Kate Moss and Johnny Depp are two good examples. True, they usually look kookily, quirkily ‘with it’, but their sartorial melange is an off-kilter combo of messy hair, un-matching clothes , unbuttoned shirts, and random jewellery choices.
If anything, it makes them look better, less manicured, and more human. Arguably, the tousled and unkempt look is better than some desperately cloying attempt at some abstract and unachievable notion of perfection.
Denim Will Never Die
Denim jeans have always epitomised and oozed style and cool. Originally used to make tents, then overalls, then eventually jeans, it’s now used to make jeans, jackets, shirts, dresses, and even other accessories such as bags and caps. It can be dyed any colour, and it’s an extremely durable material, making it hard-wearing and long-lasting. Denim jeans traverse ages and sexes and can be worn to look good with most things.
James Dean gave them an edge of hard-edged, rebellious cool, and Kate Moss’ Calvin Klein ad made everyone want a pair of them. Nowadays jeans are worn by some people almost like a uniform, devout followers of the denim style. As the song goes, love never dies – but neither, it seems, does denim.
On My Watch
Personally, I think there’s something effortlessly elegant and attractively old-fashioned about a pocket watch (especially if you slide it out of your pocket on a chain). But my Victorian mind set is, as ever, out of synch with the general multitudes, who prefer equally stylish and fashion-proof timepieces. Rolex Submariner, Tag Heuer’s Carrera, Timex Camper, and Omega Speedmaster Professional (used on every manned NASA mission, fact fans) are trendy, classy and, erm, timeless, wrist accessories.
A Good Pair Of Sunglasses
Celluloid has furnished us with an impressive panoply of well-sunnied stars – Tom Cruise in Top Gun, Brad Pitt in Fight Club, and Will Smith in the Men In Black series, to name but three. And whilst these iconic, filmic shade-wearers indubitably look cooler than a polar bears’ toenails, a decent pair of sunglasses can also hide a multitude of sins.
Whether your eyes look heavy and bloodshot from one too many rough Scrumpys the night before, or you didn’t get enough sleep, or you’ve simply forgotten (or don’t want) to put on your make-up, a pair of good, big, black emergency sunglasses are the emergency fashion fix par excellence. You can pick up an excellent and affordable pair of designer sunnies at Discounted Sunglasses.
These are just a few fashions and ideas that will never date. Can you think of any others? Share in the comments.
Susannah Perez is a passionate fashion and beauty writer who keeps her finger on the pulse of prevailing trends.
Image Credits: University Of Salford Press
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