Why and how retro clothing is making such a comeback?
In recent years retro clothing from all styles and eras has come back into fashion through one way or another. Lots of brands that were kings of their era fell out of the mainstream trends have now come back due to people wanting retro and vintage clothing that is no longer available on the general market.
Music is the main reason I believe that these sorts of styles and fashion trends come and go. Where certain genres of music come back again like UK Garage did in 2014 with DJ EZ making a massive come back, so did the styles and trends that accompany that genre, Air Max and Vintage Designers. Another example would be when bans like Foals and alt-J hit the UK scene, soft rock bands brought back a whole wave of psychedelic wear with a mix of soft grunge to accompany it like back in the 80’s.
The internet has played a huge part of this cycle with being able to find and learn about what and why people used to wear back in the day. Cultures that were once forefronts of generations were forgotten but have now come back along with the clothing that people wore to associate themselves with it.
Groups on Facebook dedicated for certain types of clothing and shoes have sprung up in recent years where the buying and selling of specific items are teaming with 10’s of thousands of followers all looking to find rare and exciting old school items to rock for their friends.
Having the ability to look into the past at these fashion trends the youth are allowing them to come back bigger than ever. Companies who were at large back in their era are now making a comeback along with current brand jumping on the retro hype and now creating their own modern clothing with a retro twist to fit this growing trend.
What eras are popular and why?
80s, 90s and the naughties (00s) are the most popular and current styles while we’re writing this blog (2019). Rave and punk cultures have come back in droves with the youth wanting to express themselves like they have seen people do 30 odd years ago in the music they listen to and through what they wear.
80’s Punk clothing has seen a return as retro band t-shirts, denim jackets and doc martins now are everywhere in the high street. These classic 80’s staples have come back but not so much due to the music just more in regards for people accepting what people wear more. This style was very much for people into heavy rock music and wanting to rebel against society through what they wore and what they listened to. Now, it’s more a soft grugey look with kids who listen to the Artic Monkeys rather than Nirvana.
'Some grunge girl'
80’s / early 90’s rave culture has made such a comeback in the last few years with retro sportswear thriving as old school sweatshirts with big logos, shell jackets and windbreakers full of colour have made a comeback because of it. Most of it is branded due to people wanting other people to know what they are wearing from a far and also because the logo designs back then were just wicked. The music adjacent to it is predominately Techno and D&B along with general bass music.. Again, this is softer than it was back in the 80’s / 90’s from the Trance and Acid House Raves that dominated the era with youth wearing sportswear but as branded as it is soft after today.
Late 90’s and the 00’s or the naughties is an era where a lot more designer clothes were being sort after and brands like Burberry, Moschino, D&G where big in at that time. Club culture with genres like UK Garage and Jungle becoming big, people wanted to show off what they have from these designer brands and it wasn’t unusual to dress head to toe in suits of abstract designs and big logo. This has now come back round to the 21st century and has created what is now known as the ‘Wavey Garms’ movement of today.
'Wavey Garms Team'
How is this clothing still around?
The two main reasons this clothing is still available is its quality and the ridiculous masses of it all over the world.
With the manufacturing of clothing in these eras becoming milestones in technologies, new ways were found to manufacture clothing on a global scale. Cotton became a lot more versatile and demin becoming such a staple for majority of jeans and jackets from the 60’s through to now. The technologies used and the industrial use of electivity to cope with the demand of globalization meant that a mind-boggling quantity of clothing could be made at high quality, cheaply and quickly to suit the industry’s rapid growth.
This mass quantity of clothing is held in hundreds of cloths recycling warehouses all over the globe that have thousands of tonnes of clothing from 50+ years ago in bales waiting to either go to countries that need aid or to wholesalers that buy it in bulk and sell it to companies like ourselves to sell to the public.
How long will this trend stay current?
We here at Baggy Boys believe that this up-cycling of clothing will overtake fast fashion in the next 20 years. A few other sources think this too with the with ITV news writing this recently (2019)..
“Second-hand clothes are set to become more popular than fast-fashion as young people become increasingly concerned with sustainability. The value of the used clothes market will double in five years thanks to the 'rise of the conscientious customer', a 2019 report from thredUP has suggested.
This is not a surprise due to the vast amount of old clothing around the world and the quality of it lasting so long, why would you need to by something brand new that has not been made nearly as well than a jumper that is 20+ years old that is still full of life.
With the internet bring platforms like eBay, Depop, Facebook and others. These platforms are full of pre-enjoyed clothing for anyone that either wants to wear something they once did or a young individual expressing themselves however they want and not just looking for something In the high street.
So next time you fancy a new coat or t-shirt, maybe think of the planet a little a get something pre-enjoyed. Feel free to read our other blog post about the ‘The Pros and Cons of Fast Fashion’ to understand more why this new trend of up-cycling clothing is becoming the new thing to do.
P.S. and if you’re after retro sportswear, you know where we are.
Cheers, Dom Lloyd.