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Timeless Style: 80s

In a new journal series we are looking at the t-shirt through fashion history - charting its rise as a wardrobe staple and championing the timeless style of the classic tee.

We started with the Seventies, so inevitably, next up is the 80s. Forget bad perms and shoulder pads - the decade is back in fashion terms; think power suits, oversize blazers and pleat skirts.


oversize 80s blazer
pic credit: Getty

Perhaps the most enduring 80s silhouette is that of the oversized blazer. Paired with stone wash jeans and a timeless tee, the style still feels modern today. Ebay and preloved sites are a great place to look for original 80s designer pieces - get the Sarah Jessica Parker look with this Balmain black tux jacket from Lovely's Vintage. Scrunchie optional.

Power suits

Blame Working Girl, but power suits were a huge look throughout the 80s and bold, colour-block suits are back - seen on the catwalks at Balenciaga, Gucci and Salvatore Ferragamo, complete with shoulder pads and gold buttons. Create a modern silhouette by adding white trainers and a crisp white tee. For AW19 look for teals, terracottas or lilac purples for an on-trend palette, like this pastel two-piece from French Connection.


Issey Miyake and Yohji Yamamoto bought pleats to the catwalk in the mid 80s. They're back this season, updated in a range of metallics and prints. Perfect for pairing with our long-sleeve boat-neck tees. This knitted version from Hush with a side-stripe detail would be perfect for cosy autumn days, pair with biker boots to toughen up the look. 

Brit rock

Debbie Harry, Madonna, Cher... they all personified the 'rock chick' look of the decade. Big hair and leather, all styled with a classic white tee.

A more wearable look, whilst still referencing the iconic rock vibe of the decade is with some slouchy leather trousers. Forget skin-tight styles, the 80s was about volume - these harem style leather culottes from COS are the perfect pairing with a classic round-neck tee. Pair with white boots to finish the 80s look.

leather wide leg trousers

Shop our timeless white t-shirt collection here