It struck me as I was reading that certain images still looked very current. What was it about the particular hair, makeup, and clothing that withstood the test of time, while others, so cutting edge then, seem costume-y to my eyes now?
Here is an example from the June 1986 issue of a look that I think could be worn now, without irony:
|A little funky, with the cropped leg and yellow socks, but it|
doesn't scream retro.
What is it about this look that renders it current, if not timeless? The yellow jacket is the right color for spring, and the messy pixie hair style is current as well, not over-styled. The silhouette is edgy without being exaggerated, and black is always cool.
And here is a quintessential 80's look that I'd only wear now to a retro costume party:
|80's enough for you?|
The severe hair, enormous earrings, linebacker shoulder pads and shiny purple fabric all scream 1980's (and I wore most of this back then).
We should wear whatever pleases us, of course. Some women love to dress in pure 60's, 70's or 80's style, and enjoy every minute of it. I'm interested to uncover the elements of style that transcend decades, just for the pure fun of it, not to judge. It does make sense when planning wardrobe budgets, though, to save big splurges for the looks that may last a while.
For example, here's a 1986 look from Calvin Klein. I think it would've endured for many years, if you just altered the shoulder pads. A simple, monochromatic suit with menswear touches, and unfussy hair/makeup:
|I would almost wear this today, minus the shoulder pads!|
And finally, although the 80's were famous for big eyebrows, bright eye shadows and glossy red or fuchsia lips, this gloriously simple face was everywhere. Still looks fabulous:
|A light hand with makeup is obviously a timeless look!|
I've got more pics to post later, and more ideas about what makes a look transcend time. I'd love to hear your ideas, of course!