Glamour Styles for the Early 80's

Written by michelle barry
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Glamour Styles for the Early 80's
Loud colours and gloves were fashion staples of the 1980s. (Fashion image by CODETZ from

The bigger the better seemed to be the theme of fashion glamour in the 1980s. Whether it was big hair, puffy shirts or large shoulders, these large fashion trends set the tone for style and likewise glamour in the era. Many celebrities and dignitaries of the 1980s can be seen partaking in trends in texture and colour, which set the tone for the rest of the world to follow in pursuit of their glamorous style.

Puffy and Pirates

Although the style was famously mocked on an episode of "Seinfeld" in the 1990s, puffy shirts and puffy clothing were a glamorous staple in the 1980s. Puffy shirts were worn by men and women alike on the runway or for a glamorous evening out. The puffiness could also be extended to dresses, notably on Princess Diana's wedding dress. The puffy style of layers of fabric on the sleeves, bodice and skirt set the tone for wedding dresses for years to come. The puffy style is also similar to the trend of pirate wear. The pirate style consisted of the puffy shirts, with baggy trousers or skirts and even floppy, pirate-style ankle boots.

Lace and Shoulder Pads

Shoulder pads related to a variety of aspects of 1980s glamour, from power suits to zoot suits to dresses and jackets. The shoulder pads, worn by men and women, gave the wearer a more prominent and square shoulder shape, which in its day exuded power and style. Lace formed a pivotal part of 1980s textures and fabrics. A high-collared, lace blouse amplified the sexiness and glamour of an outfit. Lace was also popular with wedding dresses and gowns, with British royalty leading the trend.


The finishing touch was essential to adding the final glamorous piece to an ensemble. Fingerless gloves were a popular choice and could be frequently scene on the hands of celebrities, such as Madonna and Billy Idol. Lace, fingerless gloves that covered the hand or the hand and the forearm added sexy and glamorous touches to an outfit. Costume jewellery was a popular trend of the era as well, with a focus on gold and pearl pieces. Matching your shoes to your brightly coloured handbag or clutch was also a crucial sign of fashion savvy.

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