What do you think of the changes in fashion over the past 50 or 60 years? We know that tastes in clothing and hairstyles change over time, but old ideas are often revived and recycled into newer fashion trends. I feel that fashion changes aren’t really gradual and constant, but seem to go through periods of radical change followed by relatively little significant change.
Do you see yourself as a snappy, dapper dresser or just a casual sort of person? Do you follow fashion “trends” or simply stick to your own style?
Do you think that gay men still lead the way in fashion in terms of what they wear or that at this stage, in the early 2020s, the distinction between the gays and the general population is nowhere near as big as it might have been, say 25 years ago?
My impression is that fashion in the West changed pretty radically between 1965 and 1972, with the advent of the sexual revolution and the ”counterculture” hippie movement in the West and the influence of rock and pop music, which saw an explosion in creativity and diversity in the late 1960s - longer hair for men, facial hair made a comeback after an absence of about 80 years, very long hair for women, Afros, mini skirts, jeans, tie die tops, ponchos, maxi skirts, gypsy dresses, flares, etc.
Casual clothing really took off for both sexes during this time and hats for both men and women virtually disappeared.
Then another big fashion revolution in the early to mid 1980s, driven by the influence of punk and new wave music - shorter hair for men again, perms and big hair for women, drainpipe trousers, bleached hair, return of the suit, skinny ties, big shoulder pads etc. Earrings for men came in also around this time.
And of course those in the zeitgeist like David Bowie, Grace Jones and Bryan Ferry always seemed to be at least two steps ahead of the rest. Bowie cut his hair very short in around 1975/76, just when every Joe Bloggs was sporting the long hair and sideburns George Best look.
IMO there has been relatively little real change in fashion since the late 1990s, apart from youth “fads” which always feature through time. And the ubiquitous tattoos everyone seems to sport now - these days, it seems like NOT having a tattoo (or lots of them) seems more interesting.
And then there are skinny jeans, which I found out - to my cost - that they just do not work nor look good on middle aged men sporting a bit of a belly as opposed to a waif-like 19 year old lad.