What was once smeared with dust and sweat of hard working miners is now a staple in every wardrobe across the world. Considered the very embodiment of casual fashion, denims have been in vogue since the 1950s, and through the trials and tribulations of time, managed to remain a fashion favourite.
Jeans, as we so lovingly call them, are more than just a style statement. There was a time when the fabric was worn by the ones challenging conformism. Banned by numerous institutions, denims were associated with the rebellious spirit of the youth.
Through the decades, denim fashion has been subject to high degrees of creativity and experiment. It has been used to make practically every piece of clothing and a number of accessories. The influence of pop culture and music is abundantly evident in every form taken on by this versatile fabric. Let’s trace the transitions of denim in fashion over time.
The Rebellious 50s
Marlon Brando and James Dean movies like “The Wild One” and “Rebel Without A Cause” respectively, are perfect examples of how denim was seen as a symbol of rebellion at this time. It was the youth that quickly picked up the fashion and marked the beginning of the stylish denims. By the late 50s black denims, cuffed jeans and light washes also came into fashion. The most common and popular look at this time was straight leg denims with leather jacket and converse shoes.
The Hippie 60s & 70s
During the 60s and 70s the popularity of denims increased in leaps and bounds. The taboo associated with it was gone and the free-spirited youth of the time had begun experimenting with jeans by wearing it in various ways. Straight leg denims gave way to flares in jeans trousers and were combined with platform shoes. By the late 70s, with the dawn of punk rock era, skin-tight trousers were the latest style to flaunt.
The Glamourous 80s
The era of 80’s was the age of glam rock and disco. Everything was shiny and flashy at this point. The regular blue was too plain for the youth to handle; instead, jeans of pink, green and other flamboyant pastel colours were in vogue. High-waist loose pants with embroidery was common in this decade.
The Grunge 90s
If we were to pick a favourite decade in the history of fashion or music, it would without a doubt be the 90s. The phenomenon if ripped jeans took over everything. There was also the rise of the hip-hop scene and with it came the fashion of baggy and sagging jeans pants.
The Pop 2000s
For a lot of people it might be hard to believe, but the decade of 2000s was almost 20 years ago and fashion back then was way different than what it is today. It was the decade of Hillery Duff, Nokia 1100s and Lagaan. And if we are to compare, 2000 to 2010 was the decade that saw the least amount of fashion activity around denims. Yet, it wasn’t completely out. The bellbottom jeans were back but with much smaller flares and the trousers were combined with accessories like chains and decorated belts.
Denim trends of today are truly a reflection of the times we live in – dynamic, eclectic and a melting pot. Fashion as a concept is perceived to be a customized, personal and dynamic version of what it used to be, and denims are living up to the idea.
Long story short, you practically get denim attires and accessories inspired from every generation before. Starting from miniskirts, shorts, ripped jeans, flared jeans, dresses, jackets, dress-shirts, kurtas, bags and even footwear, the world is the oyster for denim fashion!
Doesn’t this put you in a mood to shop for all things denims? Perhaps a rendezvous with Myntra and brands such as Roadster, Moda Rapido is pending…