Fashion, much like history, is cyclical. Trends come and go, but wait a few years and they manifest themselves once again in a slightly different form. Such is the case with the recent influx of bohemian-inspired styles offered at places like Urban Outfitters and Forever 21. Welcome (back) to the early 1970’s.
I went to the mall the other day (Incidentally, a sentence I probably won’t be able to say in 15 years). Suddenly, I couldn’t turn around without bumping into a paisley-patterned jumpsuit or crocheted maxidress. Southwestern-inspired prints, fringed ponchos, and breezy kimonos were everywhere. Even the girls I saw browsing the racks looked like they could have sprung from the 70s - fresh faced, natural looking beauties a la Peggy Lipton.
Hippies are the new hipsters. Where young women a year ago were imitating Zooey Deschanel, now they’re inspired by Stevie Nicks. Where they once donned preppy headbands a la Blair Waldorf, they’ve turned to flower crowns worn across the forehead.
It’s interesting that we’ve allowed the 70’s to make a comeback. For years, we laughed at our parent’s photos, asking them why they willingly wore polyester jumpsuits and bell-bottom jeans. We wondered how anyone got around in those chunky platform shoes with a patchwork skirt to boot. But it seems we’ve taken only some of the era’s fashion, and made it our own. We’ve left the tacky disco outfits in the attic where they belong, but embraced the flowery, romantic outfits.
Perhaps Lauren Martin was right in her assertion that millenials are the new hippies. She talks about how we’re the “new free spirits,” and what better way to express it than through our fashion sense? The bohemian ideals we’ve fallen in love with find themselves in bold and artistic prints, and they announce to the world who we are. They say that we’re lovers, not fighters; they say that we value creative freedom and the right to express ourselves; they say that we’re young and maybe we haven’t figured it all out yet, but we’re trying.
So embrace the embroidered peasant tops and boho dresses. They’re comfortable, breezy, and they make a statement. Leave the structured silhouettes behind, let your hair down (parted in the center, preferably) and embrace a more natural look. Let 2014 be the year of the bohemian.
This piece appeared originally on The Daily Confidential.