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13 trends from the ’00s you totally forgot about

Words by Maeve Kerr-Crowley

Or at least tried to.

The ’00s were an iconic time for fashion. But while everyone remembers velvet tracksuits and Von Dutch trucker caps, we tend to forget about some of the truly embarrassing choices we made every time we got dressed.

Whether you want to remember them or not, here are some of the unsung fashion heroes of the 2000s.

1. Vests

Tiny, impractical, and made of either denim or silk, vests were a ’00s must have. If you had boobs, you could wear your vest cinched closed as a shirt and enjoy some scandalous cleavage. If you didn’t, you left it open over a T-shirt or singlet and called yourself a tomboy.

2. Pointy black boots 

When it came to boots, the general rule was that the higher they sat up your legs, the hotter you were. Knee high was ideal, and if there wasn’t a risk of you taking someone’s eye out with a pointy toe, why bother?

3. Ties 

In case you’ve forgotten, there was a serious obsession with appropriated menswear in the ’00s. The number one thing to steal from your dad’s wardrobe was a tie, which you might have worn around your neck, but more likely would have used as a belt.

4. Pirate pants

If you were giving the cargo pants or leggings a day off, you might have reached for a trusty pair of pirate pants. Featuring massive parachute legs and a tight cuff that reached mid shin at the lowest, they were always worn with a belt because you owned about thirty and really just wanted to show them off.

5. Striped polo shirts

One of the preppiest trends of the decade, these striped polos were seen most often in shades of bright blue or bubblegum pink. Bonus points if they were cropped and double points if your neckline was wide open and millimetres from showing your bra.

6. Asymmetrical skirts

Usually made of stretch fabric, usually featuring uneven stripes in bright, eyesore colour combinations. They’d sit dangerously low on your hips, with one half of your hem at your knee and the other almost touching the floor.

7. Off-the-shoulder tops

The grandmother of the cold shoulder shirt you bought this year, the 2000s trend was much more likely to be stretchy and decked out in thick stripes. You’d fold down the top for a very tasteful ruched look and dust body glitter over your exposed collarbones to really catch people’s eye.

8. Shawls tied around your waist

Was it a belt? Was it a skirt? Not even you were sure. You’d tie your flimsy crocheted shawl around your hips, right over the top of your low-waisted, flared, generously bedazzled jeans.

9. Boleros

Being warm was never a priority in the ’00s, so why would it matter that your cardigan barely covered your armpits, didn’t close and was made of thin T-shirt fabric? Sometimes your bolero would have sleeves, sometimes it wouldn’t but it always left you feeling cool (icy cool. Did I mention how useless these things were?).

10. One-sleeved shirts

No, not one shoulder. Although that was also questionable. On one side, you had a sensible long sleeve but on the other, it was all skin. For special occasions, you’d go all out and wear the one with the cool bejewelling along the neckline.

11. Sparkly scarves

Sparkly scarves had it all: they were thin, scratchy and prone to getting holes. You probably got one free with an issue of Dolly Magazine and wore it to a party the first chance you got.

12. Knee length leggings

As if capris weren’t bad enough, somebody looked at the humble legging and asked: “What if it was shorter and left your entire shin exposed?” Knee length and 3/4 leggings were perfect for days when it was just too warm to wear jeans under your dresses.

13. Outrageously flared sleeves

In the ’00s it was important to ensure every possible opening of a garment was flared. Long-sleeve flared tops came in a number of styles, making them an extremely versatile look. Cropped variations which wrapped around the middle were ideal for night time, while loose-fitting boho shirts with a v-neck made for a casual-yet-trendy day time look. Bonus street cred was awarded for those embellished in rhinestones or ruffles.

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