It was the best of times, it was the simplest of times: The ‘90s. The finale to the 20th century was also the era I was born. The prologue to the new millennia was full of minimalist fashion. But it wasn’t this concept of doing “without” something. The neutral pinstripe suits with high-waist trousers, that could be seen on men on wall street and off-duty street style for starlets like Julia Roberts and Cindy Crawford were a testament that when your work with what you have, you have a treasure trove of natural beauty and grace to look effortlessly chic.
I see it in the echoes of the pinstripe blazer that my mom used to rock in the ‘90s draped over my shoulder. I am reminded of it as I step into the Illiad Bookshop in North Hollywood. While driving down Cahuenga Blvd, you cannot miss the building coated in giant rectangular columns painted to look like leather-bound tomes nestled side by side. Bookending the paper pillars are colorful illustrations of some of the most illustrious of literature that seemed to spill from their pages: Jane Austen, Shakespeare.
Alice tails the rabbit keeping time and Peter Pan plays his flute for Wendy. Inside these fascinating walls, real books whisper to me. The temptation to take a whole library home is almost impossible to ignore, but my interest settles on two books: a biography of one of my favorite artists of all time, Sting and another: an art book of the legendary Celine Dion. Looking through parchment preserving her mementos and iconic style and music pages and glossy pictures cataloguing her career, my love for the ‘90s is cemented. These were the best of times, the simplest of times. Music hits were heart-wrenching or inspiring ballads, TV sitcoms like Family Matters, Friends, Girlfriends and Full House were the epitome of feel-good. From slip dresses to style was so unfussy that it gave birth to the idea of the “it girl,” the predecessor to the influencer.
Here’s how you can pull off the nineties trend yourself.
A Blazer You Can Bet On:
The one item I cannot live without is a blazer. You can take them from day to night and from the office to the coffee shop. This onyx one with green stripes is a chameleon of sorts, but its foremothers will tell you it’s not to be overlooked. Lisa Kudrow turned paparazzi heads toward her head-to-toe pinstripe suit during a night out with Michael Stern. Meanwhile, we cannot forget that pinstripe skirt suit moment, completed with nylons the color of night that Julia Roberts dawned at the Golden Globes.
The sharp lapels and shoulder pads of the blazer I sported to get my professional headshots done as an on-camera personality, created edgy structure. When paired with the right trousers, it is what I see as the “cool girl’s” office look, or the red-carpet reporting outfit that calls back to the ‘90s starlets aforementioned. During the summer I trade in trousers for white Bermuda shorts and it seamlessly goes from “I mean business” to off-duty ‘90s trendsetter.
Trousers That Stop Traffic:
Trousers are on-trend this fall, especially those in a wide leg cut. WE can thank a year and a half of #WFH for making us want to wear something less constricting. Whether color blocking or monochromatic, a blazer and structured wide-leg pants is both comfortable and polished. Seriously, they are as good as loungewear as I’m concerned.
A Pop of Color:
Since the black blazer is striped with an olive green, I opted for an asymmetrical crop top in the same hue. The top lacking symmetry is the 2021 version of the ‘90s halter top, and wearing it under a suit can look slightly off in the best way. This season, green has been my most repeated color to wear, because it brings out the luminance of my olive skin tone. But in general, I have noticed that green has been the “it” color of the season, making its appearance like an overgrowth of trees.
A Sleek Belt: It doesn’t get more pre-millennium than a square belt! The silver buckle ties everything together once I add my silver rhinestone earrings.
Which ‘90s fashion trend is your favorite?
Keeping it Krischic,