I am a child of the ’80’s. There, I said it, and I’m not embarrassed in the least. In the decades I have lived on this planet, I can honestly say, the 80’s were the best. While I most remember the 90’s when it comes to music, the 80’s left a mark on fashion heart. You could be as outrageous and as crazy as you wanted to be, and being out there was totally okay. Okay, it was better than okay–it was totally RAD! Know what was even more rad? Jeans.
If you wore anything other than jeans or denim skirts, you were so far from cool that your friends would ice you out until you changed your clothes. It was that serious. Luckily, I had no problem with that, even though I didn’t get into the whole jeans-thing until later on. The older girls in my church wore the trends with flair, and I SO wanted to be like them.
I had jeans in every style and every color–almost. I had an acid-washed black mini-skirt that buttoned all the way down the front rather than zipped, and it had a matching acid-washed black crop denim jacket. That outfit was the bomb, if you knew how to pair it with the right shirt, which, by the way, had to be a hypercolor tie-dye number in neon colors. (Hypercolor was created with pigments that would change color with the sun or body heat; the older “kids” wore these shirts out to the clubs to get the full color-changing effect under blacklights.)
My 80’s jean game then had mad attitude
I also had acid-washed pink ones, acid-washed pink denim mini-skirt, stone-washed lilac mini-skirt, and my all-time fave, the two-toned, acid-washed, pink and turquoise-blotched denim skinnies. (Yes, kids, skinny jeans are NOT new.) Additionally, you HAD to have at least one pair of shredded or ripped jeans in your closet, along with an awesome pair of Guess overalls and/or a pair of Lucky Jeans. In fact, if you did not have some of all of the above in your closet and drawers so that you could wear something cool to school every day, you sucked. You sucked big chunks. Yeah, you go over there now. We’re not talking to you until you wear cool clothes again.
Nowadays I am into white denim. Wearing white pants is nothing out of the ordinary for me. When I lived in Los Angeles I would stroll through Beverly Hills in the dead of winter wearing white. You can see exactly what I mean in the blog post from way back when. (Denim jacket from DSTLD has a discount code you can use).
Two other types of denim styles I only dabbled in are high waisted and mom jeans.
One was the paper bag-waist jeans. These pants had a super-wide and ultra loose waist, like a paper bag. You needed a belt to keep them on and cinch them in, or you had the look all wrong. My favorite pair of acid-washed summer shorts had this kind of waist.
Stovepipe pants were hot too. These jeans had SUPER tight legs around the ankles and calves. You really had to wedge yourself into them. They were not a good look for anyone that had great-looking legs, but they sure could make scrawny legs look awesome. We called them “stovepipe” because the lower legs looked like someone fashioned them into stiff, cast-iron stove exhaust pipes. The key was to wear tight pants with sweaters of immense size and fluffiness. Again, not the best look for me, so I didn’t wear them.
Best of all, finally, there was the look that NOBODY but your mom wore. The dreaded “mom jeans” where when moms thought they were actually being cool. They would pull on giant, baggy jeans with elasticized waists, and (gasp!) belts, AS IF. You did not need a belt to hold these up; the elastic waist should have been enough. As a kid and teen in the 80’s, you did not want to be caught dead in your mom jeans unless you absolutely wanted to be ridiculed.
What goes around comes around.
Which brings us around to the current trend. It seems that fashion icons everywhere are trying to make mom jeans cool. Although it still makes me cringe a little, the fact is, “mom jeans” are incredibly comfortable. The mom look is WAY more dignified than putting on sweat pants in the morning. Hey, at least, you’re wearing jeans. Kendall Jenner recently rocked the high waisted look in New York City. She looked so relaxed in those jeans that I thought I could finally wear a pair of “mom jeans” out of the house. Turns out, she (and a few other stars like Madonna and Cyndi Lauper) might have the latest fashion trend just right.
Lastly, you should know–mom jeans fit, all the time. Mom jeans do not squeeze your body into lumps or “muffin top” you. Best of all high waisted pants feel relaxing, comfortable and easy to wear. Most importantly, you can get them in acid-wash, and feel a little more like I’m in my own ’80’s skin again.