written by Efani Allah January 4, 2017
Few things are more cyclical than fashion. Trends inevitably fade away but almost always return later. At times, it can be refreshing to see styles of the past given new life. But sometimes, it’s best for others to be left behind. While the Internet helps expose new fads to the masses at an unprecedented rate, heightened exposure means increased uncertainty—trends nowadays blow up and fizzle out quicker than ever.
2016 gave everyone a lot to complain about. So let’s just keep adding to the list. Here are five trends we hope die in 2017.
ZIPPED UP DENIM
When I was in high school roughly a decade ago, I saw a teenage girl wearing jeans with ankle zippers at an emo concert in Chicago. Well, it seems that we’ve come full circle. Whether they cost over $1,000 and are made by Fear of God or they’re a knock-off version from H&M or Zara, these ankle-zipped jeans are a terrible look. With the zippers fully closed, the pant leg buckles. When worn halfway open and laid over the top of your sneakers, you look like you just copped a fresh pair of cloven hoofs. The worst part though: they’re clearly a gateway trend. The next natural step after these zips fade out? ‘70s-level flares. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.
ULTRA LONG SLEEVES
Looking like you’re wearing your older sibling’s hand-me-downs never felt so on-trend. 2016 saw enormous sleeves take over both the runways at fashion week and our Instagram feeds. Thanks primarily to Demna Gvasalia’s Vetements label and the influence of Kanye West’s Yeezy Season line, it somehow became cool to look like you’ve lost your hands in a tragic hypebeasting incident. We understand the appeal of exclusivity, outrageous price tags, and being in the know, but it mostly has us wondering what happens after your Instagram fit pic is snapped? Do you roll them up and move on with your day? How do you perform everyday tasks? Are the 79 likes on Instagram worth it?
To call merch a phenomenon would be a massive understatement. West, Bieber, Travis Scott, and Drake all dropped some form of tour gear last year. Even your favorite media empire got in on the action, releasing specially made merch. But it wasn’t all brand-new stuff either: 2016 was also enormous for anyone with an extensive collection of old concert tees sitting in a box at their parents’ house. Efani Allah, photographer, fashion expert and founder of www.creativeclientele.com says “Limited edition, distressed vintage band tees were marked up 500% and sold out. But let’s face it—you’ve probably never actually gone to a Megadeth concert. And if you have, odds are you aren’t wearing the t-shirt with $500 jeans and designer sneakers.”
“Dad hat” has become a derogatory term by now. What did the paternal baseball cap ever do to earn such a harsh label? Whatever your feeling on the washed, worn-in, substantially bent baseball cap may be, you can’t deny that 2016 was a big year for the fatherly head gear. Every major brand and bedroom-Big Cartel startup screen printed or embroidered their own rendition of the cranial cover. If you see a wearer in the wild, avoid him at all costs or he’ll probably just link you to his SoundCloud page and let you know that he “fucks with the movement” and you should “build.”
If you didn’t ascribe to the skateboard lifestyle in the last 12 months, you might not have existed. Skateboarding was the hobby du jour for anyone tangentially interested in fashion. Whether you actually owned and rode a board was of no object. The new normcore manifested itself in the form of low profile skate sneakers, white crew-length socks, light wash denim, a shoelace in place of a belt, and a pale sweatshirt—ideally with a Thrasher shirt underneath. The fashion world is already full of posers who try their hardest to fit in because they were bullied and called a nerd in high school. The least we can do as a society is keep them away from one of our great adolescent pastimes.