I've been feeling so inspired by '90s female musicians lately that I had to write a post celebrating their style. Since the start of the year I have mostly fallen into the trap of listening to white male boybands idolised by the NME, but this week I remembered that PJ Harvey/Courtney Love/Kim Gordon exist and their empowering anthems have eased me through mocks (so far, at least.) Aside from their music, what I also love about these women is the way they dressed, and how it helped to represent their "f*** you" attitude to the male domination of the music industry. From Courtney Love’s signature babydoll/Miss World looks to Kim Gordon’s punkier style, ‘90s girlband members are firm style icons to this day. The clothes look comfortable and functional, but rarely fail to deliver some kind of political message, showing that female empowerment does not mean sacrificing sartorial self expression.
Normally I prefer the cuteness of '60s girl groups; the shift dresses, the kitten heels, the sweet haircuts. I mean usually that aesthetic is more appealing to me because it seems more glamorous. The exception being Courtney Love whose babydoll dresses appropriated that kind of look as a reaction to the girly girl cutesy girlband stereotype. She took that image and made it powerful and political; reclaiming femininity on terms not dictated by society. Miniskirts, crop tops and lingerie were as important as t-shirts with slogans such as "Girls Invented Punk Rock Not England" and "Riot Not Diet." Like the '60s, the '90s seem to evoke notable nostalgia, both musically and sartorially. The Riot Grrl Movement in particular embodies an essential part of this. Furthermore, it was the last era that really experienced life without the omnipresence of the internet and social media. I’m not saying whether that’s a good or bad thing but, comparing now to 20 years ago, it has undeniably made a world of difference to way in which we view and receive information and experience creativity.
I can safely say that after watching "Almost Famous" I wanted to ransack Penny Lane's wardrobe. It may seem contradictory to talk of the empowerment of female musicians then look at the style of the wives and girlfriends of male musicians, but even before women were making music entirely on their own terms, they were indispensable to the industry; as muses, as support, as icons in their own right. Penny Lane in "Almost Famous" completely embodies the glamour of the '70s; with oversized fur coats, large felt hats and lots of crochet fabrics. However, her casual style of plain too-small t-shirts and cut-off denim shorts is also indicative of the era. The film really captured a '70s nostalgia. Often celebrated as one of the most fashionable films, "Almost Famous" definitely does not disappoint on the costume front.
|Paul and Linda McCartney|
|George Harrison and Pattie Boyd|
|Chloe Spring/Summer 2015|
|Saint Laurent SS15|
|Tom Ford SS15|
OK, so I know he's not a female musician, but any post about music and fashion without a mention of Bowie would be a crime:
Have a nice week!