Generation Gap

The current style for wearing trousers extremely low, has bemused me for some time. Trousers are worn so low, that a belt is needed to fix them mid buttock, or even below the bum cheek (an almost non existent bottom is needed for the latter). This fashion for wearing jeans and trousers so provocatively low, really accurately illustrates the generation gap to me. It is something that I haven’t thought about too much as I have got older. I have become more aware of fashions and trends, without necessarily adopting them myself, but this way of wearing trousers does just leave me baffled.

If you were born before 1980 this look is completely and unfathomably ridiculous. If you were born after 1980 it is cool. I think the cut off point is as defined as that. (Your comments are welcomed on this.)

The fashion is known as ‘Sagging’ and originates from the U.S., where the prison system prohibited the use of belts (which could be used to commit suicide). The style was then popularised by Hip Hop culture and adopted by young people as a symbol of the rejection of mainstream society’s values. Dressing provocatively and pushing the boundaries of acceptability are a right of passage for each new generation.

My own generation, labeled generation X, of people growing up in the 80’s got to express their angst and disproval of the mainstream through a whole variety of trends – Modern Romantics (boys dressing like girls), the Rave scene (taking drugs (or not) and dancing in a field). For me most of my fashion influences were from the music of the time – Pepsi and Shirley, Bananarama, and Human League. I remember expressing my individuality by bleaching my own jeans, just like everyone else, and wearing them ripped at the knee, thigh and bum.

This is what I find really interesting about fashion, not the shallow side of just following the latest trends and being overly concerned about how you look. But the influences behind why some trends are adopted and where they originate. It makes me consider what is going to come next and where those influences will come from… Something you could take a guess at, but no one could predict.

Thanks to Corey and David.

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