Fashion trends usually come and go, but there are some styles that never really go out of style.
Recently, one of the decades that has captured the attention of many A-list fashion designers and a lot of sartorially advanced men, is the 90s.
And speaking of a big 90s fashion comeback, the fun and vibrant trend called “preppy” is now being reinvented for a new audience.
A few changes and style twitches has been made with the traditional preppy look to cope up with the younger generation, but the classic staples is not going anywhere.
Here we took an in-depth comparison of the traditional and modern preppy style. We’ll let you decide what’s better!
What is Preppy Style?
The term “preppy” comes from “preparatory schools”, which were actually private institutions that used to fed upper-class men into Ivy League Institutions.
During those times, the preppy style was associated with a certain level of privilege and exclusivity.
90s preppy fashion is all about being clean, polished and stylish all rolled into one.
The Classic 90’s Preppy
The traditional preppy style, just like most fashion trends of the 90’s, rose in popularity because of classic films of that era like “Clueless” and “Saved by the Bell”.
Featured in these movies are some staples of the 90’s preppy style like plaid jackets, khaki pants, button down shirts and polo shirts.
Ginghams and Tartans dominated the preppy fashion trend during this decade and these timeless patterns are still considered fundamental elements of the traditional preppy style.
A lot of pops of colours were also introduced during this fashion era. Bright neons and vibrant hues like yellows, pinks, and greens were the usual go-to colours of a preppy gentleman during the 90’s.
Some notable fashion brands like Ralph Lauren, J Crew and Brooks Brother, Tommy Hilfiger and Burberry shaped what we call the classic preppy style that most of us recognize up to this day.
Dawn of the New “Prep”
As much as we love the timeless preppy aesthetic, just like a lot of other styles of the past, the 90’s preppy is now being reimagined for the new millennium.
Many A-list designers today have created a masterful marriage of preppy staples with playful modern trends.
The iconic patterns like Ginghams and Tartans never went out of style. But for the modern prep, colours became more muted. Colour palettes of the modern preppy ensemble lean towards to neutral shades and earth tones.
These colours like brown, grey, and beige are versatile enough to be styled up and down depending on the occasion. Dark shades will make you look more luxe in formal events, while the neutrals will give you a fresh and unique look for more casual gatherings.
But above all else, the modern preppy style is all about the fit.
Unlike the 90’s prep aesthetic that revolves around the loose fits and baggy looks, the modern preppy style is more into well-fitted and tailored-looking clothes.
Body build, face shape, and even skin tone are being considered by younger gentlemen when choosing the perfect preppy outfit.
How to Dress Preppy?
The preppy aesthetic is all about being polished, classy and cool.
You can play around with different preppy style concept just like you’re telling your own story through your outfit.
You might be heading to a golf match, a day at the uni, or a retro yacht party — name it, there’s surely a preppy outfit for you.
The Preppy Dress Formula
The Preppy Trousers – Khakis and Chinos are the ultimate preppy bottoms. These are one of the basic staples that any preppy gentlemen should have on his wardrobe.
The Preppy Top – Nothing screams more preppy than a Ralph Lauren or Tommy Hilfiger polo shirt. It is like the universal preppy uniform. But a crisp, white button-down shirt is also a classic choice.
The Preppy Shoes – We couldn’t think of a better suggestion than the holy trinity of preppy shoes — steaming white tennis shoes, faux leather suede boat shoes and vintage-inspired loafers.
The Preppy Accessories – Ties, bow ties and pocket squares are the best preppy accessories. You can play around with patterns and colours. You can also have a matching aesthetics with your faux leather suede bow tie and shoes or your white tennis shoes and your neat white polo shirt.
Preppy Style Is Here To Stay
The main reason why preppy style still made it through the modern fashion trend is the fact that it focuses on the basic pieces.
And no matter how long our fashion journey is, we will all go back to the basics.
The modern preppy style is a celebration of how the most plain ensemble can be transformed into something special when the right amount of colours, patterns and textures are added.
And aside from that, the “new” prep focuses more on individuality and personal preference rather than just adapting to trends.
Afterall, preppy is not just a fashion statement but more of a lifestyle.
For all your preppy needs, trust only DQT for high quality men’s accessories. We all got the good old classics and much more!