How Fashion Recycles Itself

Perhaps you’ve found yourself rummaging through your parent’s attic only to find a vintage peasant top from the 70s and you couldn’t resist adding it to your collection. This is proof that styles show up again and “recycle” themselves. But why does it happen and what do we see coming back in the next decade?

Memory Lane: People love nostalgia and that is the main driver back into the past. The cycle of fashion reinvention is varied but not more than 10-30 years on repeat. That may seem like a long time, but that means in a lifetime, fashion trend can bring back elements of fashion multiple times driven by wanting to remember “happier” times from youth.

Why Reinvent the Wheel: Why fix what isn’t broken? Some fashions are timelessly classic and so it comes back around on the shorter recycled timeline. This includes styles similar to Audrey Hepburn and others of her time.

Fashion Speaks to Personality: Fashion is an expressive tool that caters to personality. Have you ever experienced a trend that comes up that you can’t get enough of? Similar to music or movie tastes, fashion can suit personal tastes bringing back certain trends over and over again.

Recycling is not unique to fashion: In music, art, and interior design, there are cultural running themes that reoccur and show up consistently over time. A new bad will release a hit that borrow style from the 50s and it seems fresh and exciting to new ears. The same thing happens in fashion showing that expression and cycles are typical to human nature!

So What is Next? 

According to we can expect fashion to try to lift our spirits with bright colors while paying homage (right on schedule) to the 90s. Predicted to recycle this upcoming spring are fanny packs, chokers, sequins and low slung pants. The message of fashion is for us to not take ourselves so seriously.




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