The recycled trend we're borrowing from older generations.
I recently opened an email from fashion search engine Lyst denoting the rise of "Granny Chic," a trend that encompasses popular items like loafers, pearls, and vests. Glancing down, I realized I just so happened to be wearing all three—which gave the email an added dose of credibility. These items often thought of as beloved by older generations lend an air of sophistication to our current ensembles. After spending a year in sweatpants, it seems only natural that we gravitate towards elevated items aboard the typical pendulum-like repercussions fashion is so known for. Now these simple pieces polish our looks without overpowering them (or counteracting your need for comfort).
Ella Wiznia, founder of popular emerging label The Series, has made a name for herself through items like her popular "Granny Tank" made of upcycled crocheted blankets and other handmade items of a similar vein, and is particularly clued into why these recycled trends are striking a chord with us. "On the most basic level, thrifting and buying secondhand/vintage is super popular right now," explains Wiznia. "Whether someone shops this way for environmental/ethical reasons or because they are inspired by a TikTok video, a lot of the garments that you find in these stores were in fact owned by an older generation."
Not only do these trends "appear" more sophisticated, they almost pay homage to a previous time period by rejecting the concept of constant newness and instead acknowledging the respect said generation had for craft and well-made clothing. "For far too long our society has essentially disposed of people once they reach a certain age, especially women," continues Wiznia. "Wearing styles that they made or fought to wear or lived their lives in is a tiny bit of the respect that they deserve, both the garments and the women." Continue scrolling to discover all the different sophisticated trends you can plan on borrowing from the older generations this season.
A menswear-sparked moment, brooches have served as an easy way to dress up suiting. Everyone from Jared Leto to Trevor Noah have indulged in these zoom-friendly embellishments. Most recently, Dababy rocked logo-embellished versions on both his Dolce & Gabbana and subsequent CHANEL suit—which caused a 25 percent spike in searches for CHANEL brooches, according to Lyst. Lady Gaga instigated another surge in desirability after selecting a golden bird pin to adorn the breast of her Schiaparelli gown for the inauguration.
There are few shoe options more practical than a loafer, which is why they've almost evolved beyond trend status into a fundamental wardrobe staple. And once you've transitioned back into the office, they will serve the purpose of work-friendly shoes minus the painful high heel. They also add the perfect dose of contrast to uber-feminine pieces. Beloved by everyone from Dakota Johnson to the Olsen twins, loafers integrate seamlessly into your wardrobe and can pair with anything from jeans to dresses to suits.
Another explosive trend of the past few seasons, vests seem to be here to stay. What originated on the runways as part of a three-piece suit have evolved into statement pieces in their own right. Ranging from knit sweater vests to waistcoat, this trendy item can fit any wearer's needs. They serve the needs of any climate—wear them atop a turtleneck, button-down, or t-shirt, or simply don one on its own for a statement.
One of your closet's most versatile accessories, the silk scarf is another staple that defies trends. Obviously it can be worn around your neck (in a variety of ways), but it can also be tied to a bag or around your wrist. Taking style notes from the Queen herself, the current trendy way to wear them seems to be tied around your head à la '60s film icon (or Bridget Jones) in a convertible.
Though often a bit of an investment, a good watch is a champion of the cost-per-wear ratio. When you have an item as versatile as this one, you can wear it nearly any day, any place, which means it is worth your $. In a similar fashion to a loafer, its menswear-inspired silhouette tones down pieces that come off as overtly feminine. Plus, it can help you cut down on checking your phone by offering another location to find the time.
The convergence of a '70s hippie and a trendy Brooklynite, the crochet trend received the Ella Emhoff seal of approval circa the inauguration. In terms of luxury fashion, the technique has been spotted on runways from CHANEL to Eckhaus Latta to Celine. "There is also something undeniably comforting and cozy about the colors, patterns, and blankets that have been passed down from previous generations," explains Winzia of The Series.
Thanks to a certain favorite gender-defying pop star, pearls are back in fashion. Harry Styles has ushered in a renaissance centered on the popular stone. The trend presents itself as anything from the classic ladies-who-lunch strand resting on your clavicle to imperfect shapes mismatched with unique beads.
Top photo: Courtesy of Instagram/@hepburnsmagic
Want more stories like this?
15 Spring Jackets to Satisfy Your Transitional Weather Layering Needs
This Designer Mixes Prep and Western in a Surprisingly Refreshing Fashion
Are Your Basics Feeling Too Basic? Here Are Five New Ways to Wear Your White Button-Down