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Nostalgia Meets Fashion: Chums Explores Retro-Gazing with Decades That Defined Our Generations

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Nostalgia Meets Fashion: Chums Explores Retro-Gazing with Decades That Defined Our Generations
What is it that makes you a Millennial or a Gen Xer? Each generation has different collective memories and experiences of the past, from man first landing on the moon to Michael Jackson’s moonwalk.
In their latest campaign, Liverpool-based clothing brand Chums researched the top films, music, fashion trends and historic moments from each decade to find out how they influenced the characteristics of every generation.


The 60s was an era of social change, led by Baby Boomers – those born in the baby boom after World War 2.
Fashion in the 60s followed the cultural move towards more freedom as clothing became more casual and youthful. The defining look of the 60s was Mary Quant’s miniskirt. Other popular styles of the time include Hubert de Givenchy’s babydoll dress and Geoffery Beene’s minimalist designs.
"Paisley print was a fashion hit that first took hold on more modern times during the 1960s-70s as part of the eastern inspired trend kicked off by icons such as The Beatles. Originally it came from Kashmir Princes as a royal gift of friendship and if used well, it can add a touch of royal glamour to many an outfit today." – Philippa Brooks, Chums Fashion Buyer


Those who lived through the 1970s may remember the bold colours and patterns used in men and ladies' clothing, for example on Diane von Fürstenberg’s wrap dress and Ralph Lauren’s polo shirts. Designers such as Bill Gibb created midi-length floral dresses, combining 60s hippie style with historic looks. Other notable fashion designs included Kansai Yamamoto’s ‘Tokyo Pop’ suit and Giorgio Armani’s reintroduction of the bomber jacket.
"Flares were an absolute iconic fashion trend of the ‘70s with global mega stars such as Abba, Tom Jones and Slade being photographed with their trademark flares. Saturday Night Fever showed how they could be seen as glamorous too and cement their place in our fashion history.” – Hayley Stockdale, Chums Fashion Buyer.
With fewer restrictions on what could be shown on screen, two of the highest grossing films of


One of the most iconic fashion pieces of the decade was Princess Diana’s crinoline skirt wedding dress, designed by David and Elizabeth Emanuel. Taking place in 1981, Charles’ and Diana’s wedding was a key event of the 80s, attracting a television audience of over 750 million across 74 countries. Another notable fashion trend this decade centred on was women starting to wear less conservative clothing, as exemplified by John-Paul Gautier’s cone bra corset dress and Donna Karan’s line of body-conforming clothing. Other pieces in our top five include Miuccia Prada’s classic nylon backpack and Patrick Kelly’s mismatched button dress.
"Nothing screams 1980s like the shoulder pad, especially for women who took a more delicate masculine approach to their wardrobe as they left domestic life for the city. TV series Dallas was the epitome of shoulder pad heaven!” – Phillippa Brooks, Chums Fashion Buyer


 "Denim has been around for a long time as a fabric that could take a tough time and still look good. But during the 1990s designers took on this fabric and took it to another level to create the ‘designer jean craze’. You just weren’t cool without a pair of black or stone washed jeans to wear!” – Hayley Stockdale, Chums Fashion Buyer.
Denim was a big feature of 90s fashion, but clothing classics went far beyond this too. Grunge became a popular style as men and women opted for more casual clothing, with Marc Jacobs designing a ‘Grunge collection’. Corset tops gained popularity during this time with pieces such as Vivienne Westwood’s portrait corset and Thierry Mugler’s ‘Harley Davidson’ bustier. Two of the designers of the 90s who created pieces that still influence what we wear today were Vera Wang and Gianni Versace. Vera Wang’s wedding dresses offered a modern, elegant look, while Gianni Versace pioneered metal mesh panels in clothing, which are still popular now.


 There were some iconic looks in the 00s, such as Alexander McQueen’s Oyster dress and the dress Michelle Obama wore for the 2009 Inaugural Ball, designed by Jason Wu. Y2K fashion favourites included low rise jeans, cropped tops, Hedi Slimane skinny ties and Calvin Klein military coats. Fast fashion also became popular during this decade, with high street copies of designer styles being produced quickly and cheaply. Some designers even collaborated with fast fashion brands, such as Karl Lagerfeld’s collaboration with H&M in 2004.
"Velour tracksuits were a trend born from California that was embraced by socialites such as Paris Hilton and the Kardashians, with baby pink being the most popular colour. Rap stars and gangsters, such as John Gotti were never seen without a velour piece on them during these years. However, it was probably most remembered for Juicy Couture with their trademark across people’s bottoms that caught the most attention!” – Phillippa Brooks, Chums Fashion Buyer