Arts & CultureFashion

The good, the rad and the ugly: 5 fashion trends inspired by the ’90s



Trends come and go. We laugh at what we wore ten years ago, and can’t imagine what we will be wearing ten years from now. But one thing’s for sure: trends never really die.

Oftentimes, designers draw inspiration from the past, but add a more contemporary twist. For example, brands like American Apparel make millions from ’80s and ’90s trends like mom jeans or scrunchies. Other popular places to find these trends are thrift stores or even our parents’ closets.

Here are five fads from the ’90s that have totally made a come back.

1. Choker necklaces

The ultimate ’90s accessory to channel your inner Gwen Stefani circa No Doubt. Today, the necklaces can be made with silver and gold with creative designs and statement jewels. I’m personally a big fan of the choker trend, as long as they remain at the base of your neck and don’t actually choke you like the plastic chokers from the ’90s typically did.

Urban Outfitters, ShopBop and Nasty Gal all have modern choker necklaces. They also provide inspiration on what to pair your choker with — like leather jackets, basic tees and v-neck tanks, at college-budget-friendly prices.

2. Crop tops

Crop tops have made a major comeback. In the ’90s, crop tops were worn with low cut jeans and typically were very boxy in structure. Now, crop tops are commonly more slim-fitting, and paired with high-waisted skinny jeans or skirts.

Crop tops can be found almost everywhere, but I really love American Apparel crop tops because of the basic design and loose fit. Forever 21 also has a large selection of crop tops at the unbeatable price of $12.80 — I’ll take 2.

3. Fanny Packs

This fad is no longer reserved for tacky tourists. Fanny packs have made their way back into modern style, not only because they’re practical but also because they truly are an ode to the ’90s. I personally am not the biggest fan of this trend, although fanny packs are undeniably convenient.

If you’re looking to add to your accessory collection, or have an event coming up which will require hands-free storage (did someone say “music festival?”), the fanny packs available on ASOS are for you. From $18-$100+, it is safe to say many are willing to invest to keep their valuables secured on their hip.

4. Overalls

This was arguably a trend that no one expected to see again. Today, overalls are designed in a variety of ways (distressed, cropped and fitted) to ensure comfort and versatility. I am a huge fan of overalls and love to see the way people accessorize them. Sometimes they can be a bit overwhelming, but when worn right they can easily be a go-to outfit. 

Overalls tend to be somewhat pricey, especially for quality denim. I love the overalls at Free People because of their different approaches to the classic denim look.

5. Slip Dresses

Basic slip dresses were a huge trend in the ’90s, adorned by the likes of Kate Moss. Slip dresses today consist of thicker material and richer hues. A basic slip dress is now seen as an essential wardrobe item, rather than a trend for a season. 

This is one of my favorites. Slip dresses have the capability to work all year round (in the summer with sandals, in the winter with tights and boots). I’m always on the hunt for a great slip dress, but I’ve found some of my favorites in both quality and design at TopShop and Aritzia.

So before donating that garbage bag of old clothes, you may want to take one last look. You never know what will come back in style.


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Dorie Pagnano

Dorie Pagnano