How Stranger Things is Influencing your Wardrobe
To the uninitiated; look away now. If you haven’t found yourself binge-watching Stranger Things - that spine-tingling, part-Stephen King horror, part-childish pastiche of a certain genre, then this column will make little sense. Part of the appeal of the series, whose wildly-anticipated second series recently launched on Netflix, is the safety net of nostalgia it evokes.
Set in the Eighties, it pays homage to the all-American adventure films of that decade - E.T, The Goonies, Ghostbusters, Stand By Me. It’s also a fantasy-fuelled escapist romp through an era when Trump was just a swaggering businessman and terror attacks weren’t quite so everyday.
Never slow to catch on to a zeitgeist-y moment, fashion has followed suit; Louis Vuitton’s most recent women’s show featured a Stranger Things T-shirt, while Harper’s Bazaar enlisted the child stars of the show for a fashion shoot featured in its September issue.
While the young stars looked well turned out in their best Brooks Brothers at this year’s GQ Awards, there’s something off-putting about turning the teenage actors from Stranger Things into "fashion" plates. Some have previously called into question the brands and magazines turning 13-year-old Millie Bobby Brown, who plays key character Eleven, into a clothes horse. However the costumes in the TV show - in all their Eighties glory - also happen to be just the ticket as we segue into autumn.
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The setting of rural Indiana (which makes for lots of unsettling shots of barren woodlands) employs a vast deal of workwear; that is, rustic, solid, no-frills outerwear that has its roots in American functional attire of the 20th century. But you don’t have to scour vintage stores; local brands like Workshop and Matt Nash offer no-nonsense jackets and coats.
Another style thread running through the series is corduroy; which has been wrestled out of the hands of your local geography teacher and this season reinterpreted by the likes of Brunello Cucinelli, Gucci and Berluti.
The humble Harrington jacket - a mainstay of the high schoolers in the show - is also a handy between-seasons piece. Created in the 1930s by Baracuta and popularised by Elvis, it’s an item every man should have in his wardrobe.
And finally, whether you’re furiously pedalling your BMX away from approaching monsters from another dimension, or just commuting to work, a trusty rucksack is no longer just the stuff of schoolboy hijinks.
Its journey from item of pure practicality to one of sophistication has been well-charted; opt for a version in leather for a more elevated approached and hold it from the top handle to look less tweenager. We’d say add an encroaching sense of dread and some government conspiracies, but then that might be a little too close to real life in 2017.
- The Telegraph
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Wednesday May 11, 2022
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