Styles of the 1980s were larger than life. Bold colors, shoulder pads, and stretchy synthetics in clothing were matched by voluminous hairstyles and oversized accessories. Leg warmers, elastic headbands, and leotards of the fitness craze were also popular. For both men and women, style was highly reflective of individual personality.
Musicians like Madonna popularized the street urchin look. Short skirts layered over colored tights or leggings were accessorized with multiple bracelets and necklaces, fingerless gloves, and lace hair bows. Vivienne Westwoods designs popularized punk culture and clothing. Intentional distressing added texture and commentary to popular clothing.
In evening wear, off the shoulder necklines and puffed sleeves were hallmarks of the decade. Power dressing, to represent personal wealth and importance, reached its height in the 1980s. Clothing was designed to convey a sense of power and confidence by exaggerating a broad silhouette and structured form with shoulder pads. Gold jewelry, designer labels, sport coats, and metallic fabrics were highly fashionable and signaled the wearers financial success.