The 2010s have been described as “a revival of austerity-era period pieces and alternative fashions” with people embracing their culture and nostalgia more than ever.

Trends were first introduced mainly through celebrities, socialites, catwalks and increasingly influencers however the trickle-down effect of fashion shows has resulted in replicas and other clothes designed with the catwalk as a basis or inspiration for them, making fashion more accessible to the masses. As we’re becoming more aware of the effects of climate change and the huge contribution of fast fashion in the decline of our environment, it is worth mentioning the rise in popularity of second hand vintage, or charity shop bought clothing as a sustainable, cheaper and more ethical way to purchase what we wear.

This review features a collection of regular (and stunning) young women as opposed to models to show what the impact of this decade’s fashion has really been on normal people.

2010 - This marked the influx in popularity of skinny jeans following the 2000s, remaining a staple in most people’s wardrobes even now. Gladiator sandals made up a key part of summer footwear following the Chanel St Tropez Cruise show and striped nautical (also known as Breton) stripes reemerged on runways in spring 2010, having first been displayed by Coco Chanel in 1917.

2011 - All throughout this year I can remember walking around with my siblings looking like a pack of highlighters. 2011 was the year revival of crop tops from the 90s and vibrant jeans or chinos in matching colours such as red or turquoise. These were usually accented with a scarf of some sort printed with graphic images - first worn by celebrities.

2012 - After some of the economic hardships the UK had faced resulting in resentment towards branded labels such as Juicy Couture, 2012 was when people started to once again embrace luxury, sporting fur vests and often leather leggings. Long statement necklaces were a nod to the emerging boho style at the time and the contrast between the free-flowing and pulled-together was a start to high-low dress, where people wear high end pieces in juxtaposition with cheaper, sometimes charity shop bought pieces.

2013 - Skater dresses, polka dots and trainers. 2013 was the year of the “Girl next door”. This look, which was brought to fruition by Taylor Swift was one of practicality and prettiness, having already been a well-known aesthetic due to the “high school movie” culture of the 90s and 2000s. Often these looks were worn with statement sunglasses or a red lip for greater impact. Overall, I think the girl next door is a persona we can all be nostalgic about.

2014 - In this year there was a notable increase in athleisure and co-ord sets as a way to be comfortable and co-ordinated. Some inspirations for this came in the early 2000s such as with Cher and Dionne from famous movie “Clueless” but also as Adidas continues to release matching sets with their signature stripes. This was truly a trend inclusive of everyone; all ages and genders.

2015 - This was when I became somewhat fashion conscious, as most young girls do, entering high school. Undeniably the biggest trend at this time was copying what we saw those older than us wear and for me that was denim or suede buttoned skirts and off-the-shoulder tops which rose in popularity as a look inspired by the bardot neck that the likes of Alexa Chung were wearing in the summer of 2015.

2016 - One might call this the year of interesting outerwear - A trend which first began in 1932, only to be rereleased between the 60s and the 80s came back yet again in the form of the bomber jacket. Previously popular, seen on none other than the Pink Ladies in the musical motion picture “Grease”, the bomber jacket returned with large statement designs often embroidered onto the back and vibrant iron patches used to customise clothing. As vintage shopping became more mainstream, windbreakers from sports brands were one of the best-sellers, in retro colours. For similar reasons, chokers and velvets (the most popular fabric in autumn of 2016) were more often worn, with circular loops more often appearing on skirt and fleece zips alike.

2017 - This was very much a growth and extension from the vintage shopping trend, which extended to thrifting and charity-shopping becoming more of a chosen option than looked down upon as it previously was. “Matrix” and tinted glasses were a trend perfect for instagram and paid slight homage to the Beatles for whom these tinted glasses were a key part of their look. Slip dresses and slip tops were once again revived, but now more practically with a signature black slip worn over a basic white tee to bring more drama into the outfit.

2018 - “Dad” shoes, bucket hats, bum bags and biker shorts. You could describe 2018 fashion as festival-style clothing. Most commonly in neon and bright colours, the fashion was about exaggerating the silhouette, for example by pairing an oversized shirt with form-fitting biker shorts. The style of the time was very much focussed on embracing construction-worker and utility styles softened with accessories such as butterfly clips, in pastel or neon colours. One of the accents I found most interesting was the “seat-belt” clips which, although essentially functionless, made outfits feel multidimensional in a different way than just the textures of certain fabrics.

2019 - Lastly, the year we’re about to say goodbye to, 2019, encompassed much of what we saw last year in terms of festival fashion but took a turn for the softer. With longer frilled floral or animal-print skirts paired with graphic tees such as the NASA printed tee, though we may joke about VSCO girls, scrunchies and shell-necklaces have been a huge part of a style that is supposed to read as being spontaneous and in the moment.

You might wonder, why the reemerging of former fashion? The blast from past decades into what we wear now? This struck me, also, as I’ve been writing and as much as I love fashion from the decades, I feel that the reasons behind our nostalgia are potentially quite chilling and sinister. One theory on our collective reverting back to past fashion is fear of the polarising politics and society we live in today. As our country is tearing itself apart over differences between people, religion and political opinion, our internal fears might be stopping us looking to future trends and keep us going back to a time some reflect on as safer. So before we enter the new year and decade, I’d like to remind everyone that kindness, compassion and collective empathy are the only things that will help us move forward in the future, not just with fashion but in developing the world we live in overall.

By Tahmina Sayfi, Henrietta Barnett School