Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN


November 5, 2012

Tidbits: It's 1985 all over again

CROSSVILLE — I've just identified where I can make a significant dent in my budget — my clothing costs.

A recent trip to the store made me wonder if I had stumbled into a phone booth or a flying Delorian and dialed up the 1980s, with the return of shoulder pads, skinny jeans in a rainbow of colors and sequins to the fashion scene. You'll also find oversized sweaters matched with leggings beyond the neutral shades of recent years, and even leg warmers are back. Thanks to the "Dallas" revival this past summer, power shoulders are back in force with the new (old) trends.

Fashion, like many other things, tends to cycle through trends. I recall my parents looking in horror at the return of their 1960s-style bellbottoms many years ago. They didn't understand why anyone would want to revive that trend. And the '80s fashion revival makes sense when you look at all the remakes, reboots and reshoots of '80s movies and TV shows. Did you know there's a remake of the TV series "Beauty and the Beast" on the air this fall? We've already had the Footloose, A-Team and 21 Jump Street remakes. And, of course, "Dallas" took cable by storm this summer, bringing the Ewing family back to the top of television.

My main issue with much of '80s styling is that it's not exactly flattering. Take the skinny jean, for example. It's really hard to wear this style without drawing attention to the hip and thigh area that many women would prefer to camouflage. Usually, these styles are high waisted (um, no) and then taper from the hip down to the ankle. The boot-cut jean was a godsend. It provided visual balance, evening out a heavier top and balancing those girlish, curvy figures. I actually own a pair of skinny jeans. They aren't true skinny jeans as they're cut with a little room to them, and I can pull off the look with a sweater and some tall boots — the only good thing to be recycled from the '80s.

Of course, the long sweaters and leggings can provide body camouflage, but then you feel like you're walking around in a tent with no shape whatsoever.

Shoulder pads can help narrow shoulders appear wider and make a waist and hips appear more narrow by comparison, but don't get too carried away. We all remember the women of "Dynasty," and they sometimes looked like they were ready to take the field with professional football players.

Then there's the razzle dazzle of sequins. How many of you still have a Bedazzler? Turns out that tool for adorning your clothing and accessories with sparkly baubles never went away. I need to check with my mom. She's probably got ours tucked away in the basement somewhere.

When dealing with sequins and sparkles, though, remember less really is more. You don't want to look like you're auditioning for a remake of just about any 1980s country music video.

Mini skirts got shorter and shorter, to the point even Madonna would blush. Well, OK. She wouldn't, but her mother would. Then there were the earrings that were huge and heavy. I can't even stand to wear small stud earrings because they are bothersome. Don't expect to see me sporting big hoops anytime in the near future.

And then there were leg warmers because, I guess, people had cold legs. But that was sometimes paired with fingerless gloves. Were their hands not cold, too? I don't understand the point of fingerless gloves.

As those of us who lived through the '80s once before cringe, you know the kids will be clamoring to get their hands on these updated styles and berating you for not keeping some of these fashion monstrosities so they could have something authentically vintage. Don't worry. One day they'll look back, as we all have, and shake their heads that they ever thought a jelly shoe was cool.

Until then, grin and bear it as best you can. But I'm drawing a line in the sand. I will not, ever, return to the mile-high bangs. Other than that, I suppose I can muddle through and hang on until the next trend wave hits.

• • •

Heather Mullinix is assistant editor of the Crossville Chronicle. Her column is published on Tuesdays. She may be reached at

Text Only
  • We the People: The last dance

    Charlie Hayden’s last recording session with his early partner, Keith Jarrett, was in 2007.  The songs they played were mostly melancholy.  The second album coming from that session includes Weil’s “My Ship” and Porter’s “Every Time We Say Goodbye.” The dark ballad “Goodbye,” by Gordon Jenkins, was the final track.

    July 22, 2014

  • Lion and the Lamb: Living in a pressure cooker

    The Gaza Strip, a small Palestinian territory about the size of Washington, D.C., has been in the news almost every day.  Its key location at the eastern end of the Mediterranean Sea has attracted a number of occupying powers over the years, and it has  been at the center of much Middle East history.

    July 22, 2014

  • Tidbits: The excitement of election day

    On March 12, 1996, there were 427,183 votes cast in the presidential primary election. Among those votes was mine, the first vote I cast in an election, just two days after my 18th birthday.

    July 21, 2014

  • Raising the minimum wage

    My first job from which FICA was withheld was a minimum wage job, seventy-five cents an hour. And yes, even then no one could live on that little money. However, I was a high schooler living at home where my father provided room and board. The job gave me pocket money to buy gasoline, to take my girlfriend out for movies and burgers, and to buy tickets for baseball games.

    July 21, 2014

  • Lion and the Lamb: Children on the move

    The news this past week has focused on the humanitarian crisis developing on our southern border. Thousands of unaccompanied children from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras seeking to escape from the violence, human trafficking and extreme poverty in their countries have been entering the United States.

    July 15, 2014

  • We the People: Memo to gun rights groups

    The recent incident in California helps us understand why we cannot rely on mental health services alone to solve the problem of gun violence.

    July 15, 2014

  • Tidbits: Make the best of your road trip

    I didn’t care for road trips when I was young. It was so confining to have to sit in the back seat, staring out the window for hour after hour, hayfield after hayfield. And when you’re a kid, time doesn’t pass like it does when you get a little older. Just the trip from Jamestown, TN, to Crossville, roughly 30 miles, felt like an eternity!

    July 14, 2014

  • Stumptalk: Biased climate agenda will cost trillions

    For anyone who has been educated in the history of science and scientific method, this whole issue of “Global Warming” or “Climate Change” is an embarrassing and painful exercise.

    July 14, 2014

  • Lion and the Lamb: Time for an oil change

    The land of Iraq, earlier known as Mesopotamia, has a long history going back to Neanderthal times some 60,000 years ago. Later, around 10,000 years ago, it became the site for some of the most important developments in human history: the invention of the wheel, planting of cereal crops, the development of cursive script, mathematics, astronomy and agriculture. Today it is recognized as one of the cradles of civilization.

    July 8, 2014

  • We the People: American women, be informed and vote

    Voting for today’s Republican Party and its Tea Party members, means you are voting against more than most realize.  This is especially true for women.

    July 8, 2014

Marketplace Marquee
Must Read
Section Teases
Seasonal Content
AP Video
Arizona Prison Chief: Execution Wasn't Botched Calif. Police Investigate Peacock Shooting Death Raw: Protesters, Soldiers Clash in West Bank Police: Doctor Who Shot Gunman 'Saved Lives' 'Modern Family' Star on Gay Athletes Coming Out MN Twins Debut Beer Vending Machine DA: Pa. Doctor Fired Back at Hospital Gunman Raw: Iowa Police Dash Cam Shows Wild Chase Obama Seeks Limits on US Company Mergers Abroad Large Family to Share NJ Lottery Winnings U.S. Flights to Israel Resume After Ban Lifted Official: Air Algerie Flight 'probably Crashed' TSA Administrator on Politics and Flight Bans Raw: National Guard Helps Battle WA Wildfires Raw: Ukraine's Donetsk Residents Flee Senators Push to End Hamas Threat in Cease-Fire A Young Victim's Premonition, Hug Before MH17 Raw: Deadly Storm Hits Virginia Campground Death Penalty Expert: 'This is a Turning Point' Raw: MH17 Victim's Bodies Arrive in Netherlands
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Weather Radar
2014 Readers' Choice
Graduation 2014