Ashish Balmain

Throwback Thursday: A Spotlight on Retro Looks for 2013

Thursday, April 18, 2013 Jen Pontrelli

Every fashion season it is inevitable that we see retro trends from decades past rear their heads for yet another moment in the fashion spotlight.  In the late 90's we saw a rebirth of the hippy bell-bottom pant and the 2000's have brought an onslaught of 70's fashion with the aviator glasses trend and peasant tops.

This season is certainly no exception as fashion houses are rolling out styles inspired by 60's and 90's fashion... yes, you read that right, 90's fashion.  The decade whose fashion made many of us LOL and roll our eyes is coming back in a bigger and better way for the Spring and Summer 2013 seasons.  

Check out some of the retro looks debuted on the catwalks in Paris and New York and be sure to keep your eye out for these looks in local boutiques as Spring and Summer looks continue rolling out.

60's Fashion Trend: The Baby Doll Dress

This look is a classic that we really love because it blends so many different elements of style.  The baby doll dress is typically cut very short to show off the maximum amount of leg, however it does not force you to expose too much skin as the bust and shoulders are covered by a modest neckline and cute little cap sleeves.  The look to the left by Moschino is a simple white version, however it is punched up with some sun flower decals and a textured line pattern near the hem making the style cute, sexy, and interesting all in one piece.  It also allows other elements of the ensemble to pop, like the red lips, handbag, and heels, without creating an ostentatious or overwhelming look.  This look would be great for a warm summer time party or even date night.

60's Fashion Trend: The Spring Coat

In talking about  his Spring Summer 2013 line designer Marc Jacobs has been quoted as saying, "Young girls need to learn that  sexiness isn't about being naked."  Looking at this piece from one of his most recent runway shows we are definitely in agreement with him.  Long coats like this leather masterpiece are essential for unpredictable spring weather but are still incredibly sexy and sophisticated.  The high neckline with oversized black and white collar cover up the bust and chest but also give off a very put-together look that is simple and sleek.  This type of coat is great for heading out to work or important business dates.

90's Fashion Trend: Slip Dresses

This spin on the slip dress by Top Shop Unique is a fun take on the traditional tank dress that is playing with sheer trends that have been all the rage lately.  We love the simplicity in color and design, but we really love the sheer straps and hem that make what could be an incredibly tiny and revealing dress just a little more comfortable and casual without giving away any of the qualities that make it fun and sexy.  This dress is great for one of the scorching Chicago party nights but could also be dressed down with a pair of wedges for day-time engagements as well.    

90's Fashion Trend: Grunge... With a Twist

The unkempt trends of the grunge counter culture of the 90's have come back in a big way, however, they have taken a turn for the seriously trendy and upscale.  This ensemble by Ashish reflects the best of the baggy and messy, but they've kicked it up a notch by sticking to a black, white and grey color scheme and also incorporating unpredictable fabrics such as the shiny black, baggy shorts.  This look may be evolving and might not be for everyone, but when seriously thought through and put together, we can see this working on the streets of Chicago.  We also might just be happy to embrace anything that isn't garish and skin tight. 

90's Fashion Trend: Shoulder Pads and High-Wasted Trousers

The jury might still be out on this one, but we can definitely appreciate the effort to create a structured and powerful look for women.  The high-waisted cut for pants are great for defining and complementing all types of body shapes and are definitely a welcome alternative to the butt-crack bearing side effects of some low-cut styles of pant.  The shoulder padded blazer creates an interesting and imposing silhouette for women.  The architecture of this look gives wearers broad, yet angular shoulders, which can exude power and confidence.  We did not think we were ready for the Working Girl look to be back so fast, but are appreciating the throwback and looking forward to what this may evolve into.

Photos courtesy of

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