1990s

Fashion Through the Decades

Informality was the fashion theme of the 1990s. To improve morale, businesses relaxed their dress codes and allowed workers to wear clothing that still appeared professional, yet was not as stiff, formal, or expensive as in the previous decade. This spurred the growth of a new market for “business casual” attire. At the same time, however, retailers suffered as people spent less money on clothing and globalization introduced Americans to garments produced outside the country. To stay competitive, domestic designers began creating individualized styles for consumers by paying more attention to the tastes of minorities as well as incorporating elements from other cultures into their designs. Colors were generally muted or neutral for the first half of the decade, until experiencing a revival in the second half.

To view the full text articles that correspond to these pictures, click here. Not all of the pictures in this gallery came from news clippings. Many of them came from binders of photographs donated by the Fashion Department to the Harper College Archives. To view these binders, please send an email to archives@harpercollege.edu.