Glam’d: What’s Up With the Shoulder Pads?

The recession may be over soon if it’s not over already if you take your cues from fashion. The structured/shoulder padded trend that’s so big right now is a fashion flashback to the eighties era of yuppies, conspicuous consumption, and evening soaps like Dallas and Falcon’s Crest. It was during the eighties that the power suit first came into fashion. Old timers like me remember droves of women hustling hard on their way to work wearing their power suits and white sneakers during the greed-is-good decade. They were the first generation to enter the workforce in large numbers so they had to wear clothes that diminished their femininity to fit in with their male co-workers while at the same time standing out from each other. Shoulder pads accomplished this by framing the face and cutting a strong silhouette.

Back in the eighties, people were fronting about the money they had and using credit cards to finance a lifestyle they couldn’t afford. Seems like we didn’t learn anything from recent history because we’re coming out of a time when, like the eighties, girls were buying “It” bags and other clothes they could not afford to appear to be ballin’, until the bubble burst and the economy went crashing into recession. In these tough economic times, people are leaning toward more serious dressing, especially at work because the environment is so much more competitive these days that even your looks can put your job on the chopping block. Basically women are power dressing again because they want to feel empowered at these times when so much feels out of control.

Looking back at the fashion divas from Dynasty and Dallas, they did look cheesy and over the top, but no one got in Alexis Carrington’s face without getting slapped in theirs. She brought it to you and that’s the non-verbal statement that the new power dressing makes: “Don’t mess with me this is a femme linebacker uniform.” With all that being said, the big shoulder pad trend is one of the biggest for the fall and continues into spring so it’s probably here to stay like leggings.

What do you think? Everything old is new again or leave the shoulder pads on the football field? —— By: Cynthia G. Caban


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