Is there anything more 90s than the 90s coming back?
Look around. The 90s are in full swing.
Space Jam, Jumanji, Friends, The Matrix. Feel free to take a ticket for something you want to make a comeback in the next 5 or so years and you can almost guarantee it will happen. But what exactly were the 90s like? Well, with the excess of the 80s came a more relaxed period in our cultural history.
Thinking about it, maybe it was just as high octane but we were all more relaxed about it?
You often hear about people chilling out and watching Saturday morning cartoons when they were 90s kids and they were definitely not ‘chill out’ shows. Between Transformers and Sonic the Hedgehog, cartoons in the 90s had just as much energy as in the 80s.
So maybe the change isn’t wildness but weirdness.
Though the 80s had latitude, the 90s had longitude. The 90s brought the 80s back down to earth but did so with such character. So let’s take a look at what it is people are so nostalgic for in the 90s.
The 90s had a relaxed looseness about them. The decade introduced oversized t-shirts and flannels that remain popular to this day. Kurt Cobain of Nirvana is credited with popularising this style and the credit is due. Nirvana epitomised the darker tone of the era with grunge’s garage sound and throaty vocals – a far cry from the high cries of the 80s.
Baggy jeans for men also contributed to this loose feeling the 90s became known for and this look wasn’t just because of the grunge subculture. No, baggy jeans were the more egalitarian piece of clothing, being shared by skaters, punks and rap fans too. Let’s not forget cargo pants that fully embraced the decade’s ‘comfort is king’ ethos.
Colours from the 90s tended to be a little more washed out than they were during the decade prior. Literally washed out. Taking a look at the flannel craze, it’s as if these flannels are just the clothes they bought a while ago that have been put in the wash too many times. It doesn’t explain the oversize but it’s an interesting look at the shift in colour.
Instead of the lurid, vivid colours, you see on chinos and golf shirts, we had a more muted colour palette made up of more subtle purples and maroons. Looking ahead, it’s no wonder why burgundy, mustard and teal are such popular colours today, following a kind of trajectory.
Summers in the 90s were something else. There’s an effortlessness that people with nostalgia for this era associate it with and that might have as much to do with the fashion as it does the lack of a patriot act and not living in an era of constant surveillance. Shorts, especially graphic print shorts, bring back that colour 90s summers were known for.
With basketball reaching its peak due to legends like Michael Jordan and Hakeem Olajuwon, it’s no surprise that sneakers for men became a huge hit. Seen everywhere from the court to the canteen, there’s a quintessential 90s style of sneaker.
Whether that be due to the red, white and blue stripes often making up the pallet or that high-cut shape Moncler very faithfully recreates, your best bet for pulling off 90s footwear for men is to put on a good sneaker.