The full 411 of cool kid style
Words: Keneiloe Nkomo | Images: Supplied
Every generation has its own style signature that captures the spirit of the times – think Jackie O in the 60s; laid-back boho and over-the-top disco-inspired looks in the 70s; the ruffles, shoulder pads, leggings and parachute pants of the 80s, and the chokers, velour, boob tubes and baggy jeans with chains in the 90s.
Seventeen years into the 3rd millennium, we have said hello and goodbye to a few fashions fads, including the asymmetrical jersey skirts and macro mini-skirts that plagued the early 2000s. I think we can all agree it was a pretty dark time in all our lives and to redeem ourselves from that lapse in taste, we now look to millennials for style guidance and fashionable wisdom.
Every day is festival day
Think Afropunk, Coachella and Glastonbury festival all rolled into one. Yep, septum rings, colourful hair and flower crowns are the order of the day, all day, every day and it’s pretty awesome! The rise of festival fashion has seen millennials leap at the chance to wear crochet tops, tribal print jumpsuits, and the ultimate accessory of the carefree festival attendee, flower crowns.
Retro is chic
New isn't always cool, which accounts for determined revivals of fashion trends from the 70s, 80s and 90s. The cool thing about this generation, however, is that they have learnt to embrace the old and mix it in with the new. We’ve seen 90s hip-hop fashion make a B.I.G comeback, while the flare of the 70s has become a firm favourite, and isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Suddenly your grandmother’s cardigan is the hot item you need to complete your look.
Genderless is better
Inspired by Grace Jones, the undisputed kween of androgynous fashion, the millennial generation has gone beyond the music and fashion to embrace androgyny not just as a seasonal trend, but as a way and a sign of shifting societal boundaries and challenging gendered stereotypes.
Fashion is political
The millennial generation is also known as the ‘woke’ generation so it’s no surprise that fashion is a tool for creating change once again, or at least a way of letting the world know which side of the debate you’re on. Slogan dressing has become a big trend and with atrocities committed against social justice all over the world, there’s a lot to get off your chest.
Re-use, recycle, repurpose
Got an old piece of clothing that you are just not ready to part with? Just repurpose it. Add new details to your old pair of jeans, turn your jumper into a cute winter dress or your sweater into a complete look. Millennials understand that fashion is not just about buying the latest brands: it’s also about creative ways to turn your fave oldies into stunning new statement goodies.
Versatility is key
Fashion is constantly changing, and with it, the labels that have for so long been associated with people and their dress sense are falling away. You may have dressed like a goth goddess yesterday, be a hip-hop bad bad today and a pretty little princess tomorrow and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. Versatility is key so don’t ever feel the need to live up to one label.
If it feels good, it looks good
Over the past few years, the fashion industry has made more of an effort to include every type of person and body type. You may be rounder, shorter or have a less conventional body shape but that shouldn’t stop you from wearing what you want to wear. Body positivity is the order of the day, every single day and it is here to stay. So the one fashion tip that you should always keep in mind; if you feel good in it then it looks good on you.