Models walking the Runway. Image Courtesy: Fashion History-Love to KnowModels walking the Runway.

Fashion is a mode of self-expression at a specific time and place, such as clothing, footwear, lifestyle, accessories, makeup, and hairstyles. Throughout the years, the history system, media, and music trends have popularized fashion.

With performers such as The Beatles, Prince, Michael Jackson, and David Bowie, among others, taking over the fashion scene with their sense of style, the fashion scene has developed to stars such as Rihanna, among others adding their artistic touch to fashion brands.

Designers such as John Vavardos, whose collections were influenced by music, have collaborated with artists such as Iggy Pop and Alice Cooper to represent his label, and Jean-Paul Gaultier, an iconic designer known for his affinity for music artists. The designer has collaborated with Madonna and Marilyn Manson, and his spring collection included fishnets, denim, shredded fabric, and Joan Jett inspired leather.

Music has heavily influenced the creations of these fashion designers, including Alexander Wang. It continues to play an essential role in defining the fashion of the future, as shown below.

The 1960s

Starting in the 1960s, when fashion became accessible to people of all economic backgrounds, popular music became the rage that changed the lives of many artists, influencing the fashion styles of rock, pop, and country stars.

The Beatles spearheaded the influence of pop culture on fashion, Rolling Stones, and the youth of the sixties who ruled and dictated style. For example, Mary Quant created a mini skirt out of sheer enjoyment of music, and the miniskirt has remained a fashion statement ever since.

The 1960s are known as the era of fashion innovation for women, as they gave birth to drainpipe jeans and Capri pants, which Audrey Hepburn wore. Casual dressing became more unisex, with plaid button-down shirts frequently worn with slim blue jeans, comfortable slacks, or skirts.

Pieces of Denim became popular with the working class because of Tom Paxton, Bob Dylan, and Joni Mitchell’s influence in the 1960s. Fashion inspired by music in the 1960s is still relevant today, as music from that era influences designers such as Tommy Hilfiger and Anna Sui, among others.

Fashion history
Ladies posing in the 1960s fashion. Image courtesy: Time Magazine
The 1970s and 80s 

Punk rock and punk style complemented each other in the 1970s, and they praised designer Malcolm McLaren for creating an almost punk look for the Sex Pistols band.

The band’s clothing was outrageous and spiked with accessories such as toilets or bicycle chains embalmed on the dress. These punk outfits were usually music-themed, as artists from the 1970s, such as David Bowie, heavily influenced the style and inspired many men who dressed in pink and gold.

While rock-and-roll music popularized leather jackets, pants, and accessories, the style is still popular today. Michael Jackson’s love of sparkles and fedora hats gained momentum and sensation, and Bruno Mars has adopted some classes in his music videos.

Michael Jackson was a global fashion influencer, as Balmain and his bright red leather jackets inspired Christopher Decarnin to create leather clothing and military blazers. Michael Jackson’s music-themed costumes from the 1980s and 1990s are still in use today.

Michael Jackson performing.
Michael Jackson performing. Image courtesy: Britannica
The 1990s

Hip hop music influenced Tommy Hilfiger’s designs in the 1990s because he preferred styling hip-hop artists. Tommy Hilfiger’s use of artists such as Aaliyah and Usher in his advertisements, dressing Snoop Dogg for shows such as Saturday Night Live, made Tommy’s design substantially impact in the nineties and is still present today.

Bands such as Pearl Jam, Cranberries, and Nirvana were popular in the music scene because the grunge sound was a well-accepted version of rock and its clothing style influenced the music. Johnny Depp’s style, which included long flowing hair and a carelessly careful way of dressing, became the epitome of grunge music.

Introducing acid wash pieces of denim, flannel shirts, and fingerless gloves occurred in the 1990s, and both men and women embraced Kurt Cobain of Nirvana’s loose and free clothes. Cardigans and ripped jeans from the 1990s are still in style today.

In the 1990s, a return to minimalist fashion defined fashion, and its common fashion styles included tight-fitting nylon shirts, tight nylon quilted vests, bell bottoms, and neoprene jackets.

Present Day

In the music industry today, various fashion brands, such as Gucci, Louis Vuitton, and Prada, have seen a rise. Grime artists such as Krept and Konan have their own design houses where they create music-themed costumes.

Some of today's fashion styles.
Some of today’s fashion styles. Image courtesy: Glamour

Today’s catwalks frequently feature Grime, and fashion houses such as Gucci have embraced this music trend by designing streetwear to appeal to Grime fans. Streetwear is a casual dressing style that became popular worldwide in the 1990s, centered on comfortable casual wear such as jeans and T-shirts and inspired by music.


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