Bringing Oldies Back


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Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell

The clothes from your grandparents and parents’ closets are making a comeback. 

Bell bottoms, mullets, and baggy clothing are all debuting again in modern fashion. Whether it’s through mixing these styles or keeping them as they are, vintage fashion seems to be the go-to trend for 2023. 

All these old styles are returning from their respective eras. People are reclaiming fashion, whether it’s adding a modern spin to it, or keeping it how it was in its heyday.  

With help from the idea of “reduce, reuse, recycle,” thrifting has become more popular than ever. The Salvation Army and Goodwill are bustling as people go out in droves to find accessories and clothes from decades past. Even New Albany shops like 812 Vintage and the Odd Shop are getting more attention. 

This is all thanks to Gen Z, who have gone out of their way to make their mark on the world of fashion.  

Fashion is pulled from different decades and sometimes redesigned for today. Meanwhile, some people love a certain decade and will only dress that way. Certain people seem to gravitate to decades dating back to the 1970s through the early 2000s. The 2000s style included lots of animal prints along with wearing skirts with pants, which made no sense. 

We can see the return of bell bottoms. That 70s Show has helped reintroduce people to the idea of jewelry made from wood, stones, and feathers. Headbands are back to pair with frayed jeans and maxi-dresses for women to accessorize. The inevitable return of tie-dye shirts has popped up more and more in teenagers’ closets. I blame Bohemian Rhapsody, the movie that details the band Queen’s rise to fame in the 70s. 

Let’s thank Billy Hargrove of Stranger Things for mullets being the new “in” hairstyle. Our parents were excited at the crop tops young men wore, and how they had the full, curly mullets. It (Chapter One) returns to the summers of the 80s, with neon colors and high waisted denim jeans. 

Of course, we cannot omit Kurt Cobain and Nirvana. We have people running around downtown New Albany in old, ratty jeans and flannel collared shirts. People are kicking around in their combat boots, most notably Doc Martens. Hoop earrings will gleam in the summer sunlight, all thanks to the claw clips pinning up women’s hair. 

We see the influence of beloved icons like Princess Diana. Before her 1997 death at age 36, Princess Di spurned the rules imposed by the British Royals. She breached the stuffy etiquette and broke ground by showing up in spandex shorts one night, and then stealing the show in ballgowns with plunging necklines the next.  

Even the 1950s are making a bit of a comeback. Marilyn Monroe, another famous pop culture icon, embodies the ‘50s in the best way possible—by bucking them. She was a big fashion icon in her time, bold and daring with how she dressed, the opposite of TV housewife June Cleaver. Google Cleaver if you’ve never heard of her.   

Despite its release 45 years ago, people still look to Grease for the true “vibe” of the late ‘50s — with your hair slicked back without washing it, the poppin’ leather jackets, and hot rods from street racing. Go greased lightnin’! If anyone wants their 50s aesthetic to shine through, women look to the aforementioned bombshell babes and the rockabilly looks of Elvis, Danny Zuko, and Sonny LaTierri.  

 Fashion is always being recycled. Trends die, and come back to life. Let’s keep having fun with it!