The most versatile decade when it comes to fashion and personal style has been making a comeback since last year.
From floppy hats and flared pants to psychedelic flowy dresses, and the ‘it’ item – the jumpsuit; the ‘70s are known as the hub of historical change – both in society, and fashion. The economic struggles, the technological innovations, as well as the rise in the number of social protests, were all reflected in the fashion trends of the time.
The era that was as full of disco as it was of revolutions, served as inspiration for some of the most iconic designers throughout the years, including Yves Saint Laurent and Karl Lagerfeld. As expected, its staple pieces are returning to the spotlight with the twist of a new decade. People crave vintage items because they create a nostalgic experience that they can’t resist. On top of that, vintage clothing helps them create unique looks that can be easily revamped with newer pieces.
The North Face x Gucci Collection
The highly-anticipated collaboration between Gucci and The North Face, which was announced in September via a series of short TikTok videos, has finally been released to the public. The unisex, ready-to-wear collection is now available online, featuring both brands’ trademarks. Alessandro Michele, Gucci’s creative director, wished to implement the ‘70s flair into pieces made purposely for outdoor adventures. The collection celebrates exploration and being outside in nature, and it couldn’t have been any other way, considering that is what The North Face stands for.
The entire North Face x Gucci collection can be seen in the expansive campaign shot by Daniel Shea. Set in the Alps, the photographs show trendy explorers stomping around in hiking boots, holding their retro backpacks, and setting up tents. Created and developed in a way that highlights the vintage fashion of the ‘70s, the campaign brings back the feeling of analog photography and holiday snaps captured with disposable cameras.
However, the retro aesthetics are not the only thing borrowed from the ‘70s, the collection also kept the original puffer jacket design and the color palette. To create the clothing, Alessandro had access to the outdoor-wear brand’s archives and archival fabrics. The result is the perfect balance between Gucci’s pussy-bow blouses and vintage chain patterns, and The North Face’s durable goods and desire to reduce its environmental impact. All pieces follow the two brands’ mutual sustainability policies, using organic and sustainably sourced materials.
The collection doesn’t only promote their joint sustainability efforts but also highlights what they are both best known for. The padded vest, a staple product of the American company, is printed with vintage Gucci chains, while the iconic pussy-bow blouse features The North Face logo. The two brands managed to perfectly mix their ideologies into a combined emblem. The collection’s emblem is the famous North Face logo, but instead of the red color scheme, it embraces Gucci’s signature green and red stripe, found on everything from their shoes and bags to their sweaters and cardigans.
’70s Fashion Returns
The hippie movement, together with glam rock, were two of the biggest influences that dominated the fashion style of that decade. The bohemian and psychedelic style that was born in the ‘60s continued to grow in the early ‘70s. Wearing bright-colored clothing with motifs inspired by other cultures and tie-dyed garments became the norm.
On the other side of the spectrum, however, were the glam rock and punk subcultures, which thrived through platform shoes, flared pants, and leather jackets. These styles continue to be created and worn across the industry today, with fashion brands continuing to showcase the very best of past decades.
The new decade is believed to become embroidered with the colors and the cuts of the ‘70s and ‘80s. This fact was visible throughout 2020 when many fast fashion companies found inspiration in this time period. Zara’s Spring Collection, for example, is an ode to the decade. It incorporates the retro prints into free-flowing midi and maxi dresses and paisley cropped blouses. The accessories of a really cool ‘70s girl aesthetic are also there – round-framed sunglasses, heeled cowboy boots, and hippie headbands.
Retro-inspired ensembles haven’t taken over just fast fashion – haute couture collections have also explored this decade for some of 2020’s most raved-about pieces. Jean-Paul Gaultier’s 2020 collection is proof that bell-bottoms, the most popular item of the ‘70s, are back. High fashion designers like Michael Kors also highlighted the disco fever trend with a modern take on the halter top, which featured at the brand’s fall/winter ’20 show. Others, such as Miu Miu and Stella McCartney, have ensured clogs and gladiator sandals are here to stay.
‘70s fashion staples are not the only ones that have made a comeback in recent years. Mom jeans, a staple of the ‘90s, embraced and made cool by Winona Ryder, Drew Barrymore, and Shennan Doherty, made a return a few years ago and have not left the shelves of stores yet. The most iconic accessory of the ‘90s – the choker, sported by every female pop star at the time – is back in stock, too, as are Dr. Martens and scrunchies. An abundance of scrunchies, it seems. Moreover, staple items of the ‘80s are also fashionable again, including high waisted jeans and chunky sneakers. The latter are actually so ‘in’ that brands like Gucci and Yeezy are giving them a high-end twist.
The fashion industry lives for change and exists to revive long-forgotten styles. Before, trends used to make a comeback after 30 years or so, but now, we seem to live in an era where decades of trends are combined to create an amalgamation of fashion.
High fashion has become so much more accessible and doesn’t just exist in magazines and on stage anymore. It is present on the Internet in the form of bloggers and Instagram influencers and is easier for particular elements of fashion to become stylish due to the pace of the online world. However, because of this, it is just as easy for those trends to disappear. But, just like popular Hollywood films and TV shows are being constantly rebooted, we can take comfort in the fact that this will be the eternal fate of fashion.