It’s funny, but nothing that I own or have ever owned could have been described as fancy dress until just a few short years ago. No, Seriously! You know the stuff that I wore as I grew up during the 80’s and the look and feel of the bands and singers of the 80’s. Madonna, Adam Ant, Michael Jackson, Spandau, Madness, Run DMC… the list goes on and on. I guess it’s the subtle difference between nostalgia and history, well by my definition anyway. All nostalgia is history, but not all history is nostalgia, if you catch my drift. If I may be so bold as to suggest that to be able to be nostalgic about something, you need to have experienced it first hand. Therefore we cannot be nostalgic about the Victorian Era, but we can be nostalgic about the 80’s.
So you’re going to a party, an 80’s party. What do you wear? Well, as I have alluded to above, pop music could give you a few, nay a lot of, good ideas. Madonna’s early look, around Desperately Seeking Susan may be a good staring point for you girls, or my favourite would be Adam Ant. That Stand And Delivery / Prince Charming look is just the epitome of cool. Adam always looked as it came naturally, unlike say, Spandau Ballet – their look (some might say like Tony Hadley’s vocals) always seemed a bit forced. It always looks that way from this vantage point. Or what about Freddie Mercury, or Bowie? Not to mention FGTH or Wham!
What about TV? I once went to a party in the 80’s dressed as Rene from Allo Allo. You will remember the then ubiquitous series from BBC1 (85 episodes between 30 December 1982 to 14 December 1992). I was togged up with fake moustache, black waistcoat and white apron and I got a few laughs until a mate turned up dressed as Yvette (Carte-Blanche). Slightly tenuous I suppose (an 80’s TV series on a 1940’s theme), but nostalgia is in the eye of the beholder. Other 80’s TV series to use as inspiration include Fame (of course), Rentaghost (why not?), The A Team, The Dukes of Hazzard, DangerMouse… there is no end to the list.
Of course then we could go dressed as an 80’s film star. Why not try a Marty McFly look or a Dr Emmet Brown look? Or perhaps you could go as Rambo or The Terminator. Of course Star Wars (Episodes IV to VI) was very much an 80’s phenomenon and it offers you acres of inspiration. If you fancy climbing inside a dustbin(!) there’s R2D2 or if not, Han Solo or Princess Leia. Then there’s Ghostbusters, Indiana Jones or Police Academy.
Of course these are just some suggestions, but the world really is your lobster. Ooh, hang on there’s another one – Del Boy Trotter!
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