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Goldsmiths' Official Student Magazine

The Resurrection of the 1990s

November 9, 2019
Fashion editor Will Ritchie provides us with some iconic 90's fashion moments that influence style in 2019...

The 90s has resurrected –  and fashion’s obsession with it does not seem to be disappearing anytime soon. The decade was known for its ever-changing style, including trends like grunge and minimalism. From 90s ‘It Girls’, power couples and supermodels to Princess Diana, we owe a great deal of thanks to some of the biggest style icons of the 1990s.

Courtney Love became the grunge icon of the 90s. Mixing grunge and sexy-glamour, Love became an inspiration for designers, including Riccardo Tisci and Philipp Plein. Winona Ryder, everyone’s favourite 90s ‘It Girl’, was cast in numerous cult-classic films, such as Bram Stoker’s Dracula and Edward Scissorhands. Her grunge inspired style quickly caught the public’s attention. Her matching of slip dresses, sweetheart necklines, black leather jackets and matching boots is a look seen across Instagram today.

In addition to individuals captivating the essence of 90s style, couples sometimes did it even better. Brad Pitt and Gwyneth Paltrow were one of the most loved couples of the 90s, their relationship well documented by the tabloids, until they separated in 1997. The couple often coordinated their outfits as well as their haircuts, and their looks were heavily inspired by 90’s minimalism and grunge. Although they weren’t a couple, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen were an iconic 90s duo. Now known as the founders of The Row, the Olsen twins were the epitome of 90s style, wearing matching minimalist outfits, bandannas and tiny sunglasses.

Always radiant, Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy was thrust into the spotlight – and immediately compared to Jackie – after marrying John Kennedy Jr in the tiny Cumberland Island chapel.  Bessette-Kennedy wore a silk gown by Narciso Rodriguez paired with beaded Manolo Blahnik sandals at their 1996 wedding , which was splashed across the front of newspapers around the world. Following their wedding, it was her simple yet chic street style which stands out. Forever elegant and poised, she became the cover girl for 90’s minimalism and influenced the uniform for the modern-day fashion editor. Although Bessette-Kennedy’s life has always been eclipsed by her tragic death in 1999, designers have carried on her fashion legacy. For the past two decades photographs of her minimalist style have been the inspiration for designers, including Alexander Wang.

British women have always been front and centre when it comes to fashion, and the 90s were no different. The 90s weren’t all about minimalism and grunge-Naomi Campbell’s colourful looks perfectly combined elegance and fun. Usually seen alongside Campbell was Kate Moss. A champion of minimalism, Moss took this to new heights with her infamous sheer slip dress and black thong. Princess Diana, the epitome of British fashion, is still influencing us over two decades since her tragic passing. Everything Princess Diana wore is coming back into style, including pairing a simple turtleneck with an oversized blazer, and are all perfect for autumn and winter. And no one has seemed to pull of bike shorts quite like Princess Diana first did in 1995.

Words, Will Ritchie – @ritchie_will

Images, Getty Images