In the fashion world, we hear many times that the boho style is back and the hippie style was revived on runways and in the streets. These two trends, while similar, are often mistaken and mixed – and while nobody says it is wrong, true boho style lovers and veritable hippie fashionistas frown upon the common confusion made between these two dressing styles. Today we will take a closer look at each one of these unusual and free-spirited types of fashion and emphasize on their similarities and their differences.
A Little Bit of History Repeating
Both the boho fashion and the hippie style are old styles emerging in the past and getting a modern revival once in a while. However, they originate from different places (from a geographic point of view and a philosophical one as well).
The hippie fashion is clearly political-driven. The original hippies, promoting a unisex attire, bright colors, flared jeans, sandals, long hair and colored strands of beads were indeed fighting the establishment, propelling a handful of radical ideas. Their attire was a statement in and out of itself, a label of unity, harmony, and affiliation to a common cause and view on life.
The boho style has its origin in a completely different part of the world and doesn’t stem from a political statement, but an aesthetic one. While the boho fashion found some of its roots in the hippie movement, it highlighted a particular lifestyle and personality more and more women embraced. The boho style is far from being unisex – on the contrary, it praises femininity, a particular type of decadent sophistication and a plethora of specific boho elements that make any woman stand out of the crowd. Being more focused on the aesthetic side of things than the political one, the boho fashion transcended history and turned into an iconic feminine style.
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Rules Versus No Rules at All
While one of the greatest similarities of the boho and the hippie style is that they both aim for independence from the mainstream fashion, one of their major differences is represented by the specific set of rules (or the complete lack thereof) which make the foundation of the two styles. To be more specific, the hippie movement rejected conformity. Their fashion staples (tie dye, bold and intricate patterns, patchwork, headpieces, and accessories) were highly symbolic for the social, political and economic views they shared.
The boho style, on the other hand, is built on staple elements which create the boho look when put together in a highly feminine and fashion-aware manner. The boho look can be easily achieved nowadays by any free-spirited, independent, life-loving and unconventional woman with the help of these mandatory elements:
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- Natural, free-flowing feminine fabrics: silk, lace, chiffon, organza, velvet, suede, leather, cotton, wool and mohair among others.
- Natural earthy colors and hues: all shades of brown, olive, reds, pinks, aqua blues, greens, soft and sweet pastels, color blocked orange and tangerine, etc.
- Specific outfit designs: one of the most appraised boho elements is the Bardot boho dress, a staple of femininity, accompanied by maxi skirts and flowing summer dresses, long crocheted cardigans and vests, off-shoulder tops and slouchy blouses, flared blouse sleeves and flared jeans or trousers,
- A general laidback appearance: the boho style emphasizes on relaxation – you can wear layers upon layers of sheer and see-through fabrics, slouchy clothes and slouchy distressed ankle boots, gladiator sandals mixed with midi or maxi dresses and skirt, crocheted or knitted shawls and ponchos, and so on.
- Specific accessories: the boho style and the hippie style probably share the most similarities: both fashion types emphasize on the presence of headpieces and of layered bracelets and necklaces, stacked beads strands and rings, massive, chunky and brightly colored jewelry in rhinestones, metals, beads, wood and so on.
In conclusion, while the boho and the hippie style do share common traits, the first promotes a romantic, wanderer look and lifestyle, matching any age and personality.