I’ve been looking through some photos from the 1990s for another post I’m doing and marveling at how bad the fashion was. People criticize ’80s style, but I swear the ’90s have that decade beat in the fugly department. Oh my God! The t-shirts under spaghetti-strap dresses and clunky shoes!
I was surprised at how well I remembered my clothes, like the washed-silk blouse and pants by Kikit in this picture. This was a pretty good outfit compared to some of my others. I’m more disturbed by my pre-flat iron, pre-keratin treatment and pre-stylist Keith Carpenter hair.
I didn’t write the date on the photo. My first guess was 1991 and I think I was right on the money because when I Poodled “washed silk,” I found a 1991 New York Times article about it that said, “Designers are enamored of the silk’s chamois feel and muted hues, which are created by washing the fabric with sand or stones.” I was enamored too. I was convinced it was the most touchable stuff in the world. I still like that texture.
I don’t recognize the earrings, but that necklace was definitely from the Ann Taylor store near my office. The necklace made me feel very “Jackie O” but better, because big gold beads were way cooler than pearls in my mind. I don’t have a full-length picture of this outfit but I do have one taken the day before, during the same out-of-town weekend. In that one, I’m wearing my black suede platform clogs with the little gold doodad on them. The doodad was supposed to look like Gucci’s horsebit. I felt so fancy in those shoes. I wore them till the heels literally fell off. I’m sure I was wearing those shoes with the Kikit outfit because I was clearly dressed to the teeth in all my best things. I would have needed those shoes for that final touch of elegance.
I’ll see if I can dig up some other ’90s photos of me solo. I don’t want to post any photos of me with other people without their permission. Sudden exposure to one’s ’90s style can be traumatic!
UPDATED TO ADD: Even cats agree with me about ’90s fashion!
Miss Cavendish says
How I loved my washed silk navy Kikit blouse!
I love all the old photos!! I would still wear my Kikit if I still had it!!
Haha I totally know what fabric you’re talking about. Wore some stuff made out of that too. I always felt fancy and expensive in that silk stuff.
Lynne DeVenny (@ExpertParalegal) says
When I try to explain the late 80s and 90s to my kids, I’m like, “Think no natural fibers, no straightening irons, perms even if you had curly hair, big gold buttons, shoulder pads, long blazers, short pants…” well, you get the drift 🙂 You are going to make me pull out the photo albums. I thought I was so cute in the 90s, but there was a reason my boss’s Irish neighbor nicknamed me, “Big Har-rah” i.e. Big Hair 😛
Don’t forget pants that had high waists without being high-waisted. Ugh.
Aw, I don’t think the 90s were so bad. My mid 90s uniform was: a ribbed turtleneck sweater, a line mini skirt, tights, and mary janes with a stacked heel. It was a look that really worked for me and I’m not ashamed to admit, I miss it.
There are probably some pictures of me out there with th t- shirt and spaghetti strap dress look. I was trying to explain the 90s jelly shoe comback to some friends the other day.
Yes, it’s always a good idea to keep smelling salts on hand when you go through 90s photos, or 80s, or 2001… You are gorgeous so I don’t think people will fault you for your 90s styling, because, uh, it was the 90s.
I hate seeing people wearing 90’s stuff now! It’s NOT vintage! Especially people who wear clunky thrifted shoes, ugh.
déjà pseu says
Sudden exposure to one’s ’90s style can be traumatic! Ha ha! Actually the late 90’s were my era of MaxMara-esque black wool crepe suits and Prada-esque loafer mules and wire rim glasses with the little sunglass clip-ons. It was probably the coolest I’ve ever looked. 😉 Oh, and the leather backpacks!
I remember loafer mules!
madeleine gallay says
Ah, 90’s? Azzedine Alaia, Janice Dickenson, Dolce & Gabbana Corset Dress, Manolo pre-Carrie Bradshaw and leggings, lots of leggings with sexy mannish blouse/shirts
LOVED those days insanely
indie forever before they were all great big museum worthy designers
Too bad NONE of the good stuff found its way into my closet! My wardrobe was a style-free zone.
Any Second Now says
I enjoyed my photos from the 80’s much better than ones from the 90’s. I straight jacked Molly Ringwald’s style in the 80’s, which made it easy. I think that I was still searching for some kind of fashion identity after that, and I definitely did not find it in the 90’s, lol
You can’t go wrong with ’80s Molly Ringwald. I was probably more inspired by Duran Duran for part of the ’80s, which is, again, better than ANYTHING I did in the ’90s. Though washed silk sure does feel nice.
That's Not My Age says
Early nineties was definitely an 80s hangover – took a few years for everyone to get Prada-ed up!
80’s fashion is so bad it’s good
90’s is just bad lol
The Style Crone says
Beautiful then. Beautiful now. That part didn’t change!
Oh, man, that washed silk! I had a black silk shirt that I thought was some hot stuff.
I was all about the perms, the long-sleeved short floral skater dresses (worn with black bike shorts a la Demi Moore’s mullet dress!). Oh, and the big gold buttons!
Taylor D says
Washed silk! In my 8th grade school pic (1993) I am totally rocking an olive green peasant blouse-style washed silk top. I also remember all the guys that year wearing purple, pink, yellow silk shirts.
My favorite tribute to early 90s fashion – ALWAYS old school Beverly Hills 90210. Reruns = too distracted by the clothes to pay attention to the storyline.
Shreyasi Sharma says
Yes, agree with the Gold bead necklace, much more modern! lovely look!!
Susan Partlan says
I agree with Judith.
Oh gosh yes, the 90s were terrible.
I remember having red & jade washed silk “poet” blouses, a chocolate velvet maxi skirt, lots and lots of tunic tops from Express, clunky black shoes, velvet platform boots, Victorian brocade heels… it just wouldn’t stop.
Can’t wait to see more pictures!
OMG…I want a poet blouse!