Fashion in the Aftermath

The terrorist attacks of Sept. 11 changed the lives of Americans in innumerable ways. Beyond the political and social ramifications are the cultural ones—including, of course, fashion. Forecasters are predicting, and the world is already witnessing, a major return to classic and conservative styles. Along with the nationwide embrace of anything red, white, and blue, there are other trends and potential faux pas to watch for. According to Alice Meyer, editor of the Fashion Newsletter, the changes include the following:

  • Military looks—uniforms, khaki, and camouflage—are insensitive and out of style.

  • Punk and other antiestablishment fads are threatening, rather than cool.

  • Overtly sexy styles are in bad taste.

  • Logo merchandise items are not simply status symbols, but reminders of prosperity and optimism.

  • Classics aren’t boring, but comforting in their familiarity. Watch for blazers, equestrian and nautical looks, cardigan sweaters, camel, plaids, and tweeds.

  • Black, the color of mourning, will be offset with bright and mid-tone colors for a touch of the upbeat.

  • The all-Americanism of denim will make jeans more popular.

  • Styles from the 1950s—an era when confidence was at an all-time high—will be revived.