Street style is impacting fashion all over the world. We most often imitate the trends displayed in cities like New York and London, but as the clothing industry grows increasingly international distant fashion metropolises also impact our everyday style. Thanks to the Internet and social media, dozens of unknown runways now have the exposure to influence popular fashion. This past week, Tokyo street style emerged as a new leading voice in the fusion of everyday fashion and current haute couture. Outfits throughout Tokyo during Japan Fashion Week incorporated some of the biggest hits from New York and London with a late 90s renaissance bordering on styles from the early 2000s. Use these Tokyo street style highlights to keep up-to-date with the latest in stylish streetwear.
BEANIES AND SNEAKERS
In Tokyo, platform sneakers and casual beanies were still going strong. So were distressed jeans, some with more gaping holes than last year’s shredded look. The most nostalgic element of this is the mop cut. That hasn’t been in style since 2005.
BOAT HATS AND SAFARI SHIRTS
This safari-inspired outfit boldly fuses subtle hints from three decades to create something that’s vintage and modern at the same time. The subtle parachute pants and boat hat pay homage to iconic styles from the ‘80s and ‘90s. A muted tropical button-down serves as a tamer version of the Hawaiian florals of early 2000s casualwear. Altogether, these pieces make a new look for a new decade.
WOMEN’S OFFICE CHIC
2017 Tokyo street style often re-invented current trends as nostalgia-inspired outfits. This gaudy pantsuit incorporates multiple layers of subcultural and feminist symbolism. The tie-dyed t-shirt alludes to the rebellious psychedelic ‘60s while the translucent sunglasses and pronounced brown belt seem pulled right from the ‘80s wardrobe of Working Girl.
DENIM AND LEATHER
Leather jackets and mom jeans have been common sights in most cities during fashion week. In Tokyo, everyone was acutely aware this stylish combination was a product of the ‘90s renaissance. Though many outfits in Tokyo street style toyed with 2000s nostalgia, ensembles like these served as a reminder that the last decade of the 20th-century was still very much in style.
These matching outfits show how international fashion can unify the industry without stripping it of individuality. While the color scheme for these outfits – light pink and lavender – comes directly from the pastel craze at London Fashion Week back in February, they are indisputably Japanese. The stubby pigtails and youthful, frilly totes are inspired by items tween schoolchildren in Tokyo have worn for years.
ORANGE CONSTRUCTION CHIC
According to a few March runways, orange truly is the new black. These bright casual pieces are inspired by the construction uniforms worn by European road workers. Tokyo street style is the first time we’ve seen this trend in an everyday context other that at work-sites. If the response is good, we might be in for an uncommonly bright orange autumn.
TUNICS FOR MEN
Gender-neutral clothing was one of the quickest trends to catch on in 2017. The style has manifested itself in many different forms at every fashion show so far. Tokyo was no different. Quite a few men on the street wore dress-like tunics patterned with designs that would normally be printed on a dress. Rather than gender-neutral, these outfits felt more like men wearing women’s clothing. It will be interesting to see what impact, if any, these looks have as the year progresses.
Comfortable or not, corsets are slowly working their way into 2017 fashion. These new styles are not immovable and painfully tight like they were centuries ago, but you still need to wear them with care. As a part of Tokyo street style, these classic undergarments felt like a scion of Madonna’s eccentricity in the mid-80s or a tribute to ‘90s goth and steampunk.
2017 is re-defining the rules for wearing a traditional sportscoat. These jackets were once strictly for sophisticated settings. Now, you can throw them over almost anything. You can also work with a variety of sizes. Oversized coats are a favorable fashion statement rather than a mistake.
Tokyo street style translated the international neutrals trend into something more compelling. Rather than simply emphasizing flesh-tone clothing, they blended peach and tan with splashes of modern color and ‘80s futurism. The result were outfits that emulated a vintage interpretation of the next few centuries. It was like the wardrobe of Blade Runner with muted colors and less texture.
There’s a lot the fashion world can learn from Tokyo street style. Time to add some industrial chic outfits to your wardrobe and start blending together decades of vintage looks. Give these trends a whirl this week and the fashion world will be clamoring to catch up with you.
— Timothy Vest