The '70s Denim Style Looks That Still Feel Fresh Today

Add them to your fall mood board.

Originally Published: 
Influencer and 11 Honoré founder Danielle Williams-Eke wears flared jeans a silky top on Instagram.

With enough time, trends — much like history — will repeat themselves. Some may fade to the background only to return five years later, while others might be so far beneath the surface that it’s a complete surprise when they become the next It trend of the moment. However, if there’s one area of fashion that seems to be the sartorial vault that keeps on giving, it’s ‘70s denim styles. Of course, it wasn’t just the different types of denim that came out of the decade, but how they were styled that's important to note (and emulate).

The decade of disco and rock’n’roll became one of free movement, leading to an uptick in iconic flowing silhouettes like bell bottoms and wide legs. That said, for every flared-leg option out there, one was also presented with a straight-leg style worth wearing, whether it was the focus of an outfit or not. Since their heyday, these two specific looks stepped out of the limelight as more fitted ones (hello, skinny jeans) took their place. But now, they’re back and thriving.

If you haven’t had the chance to get yourself acquainted with vintage-inspired jean silhouettes, styling them might be on the daunting side. Thankfully, there are plenty of photos from the ‘70s that could help you get started. Scroll down to check out some fashion-forward denim looks that would still hold up today.

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Patchwork & Cropped Knitwear

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Lean into both the ‘70s aesthetic and the 2021 craftcore trend with a pair of patchwork jeans like the ones above, which were worn by a disco dancer circa 1974. Pair it with a cropped knit top for a cozy yet party-ready look.

Bootcut Jeans & Graphic Tee

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For a casual look that still channels ‘70s vibes, opt for an easy white graphic tee. The top pairs so well with deep blue bootcut jeans.

Menswear-Inspired Suspenders

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If you’re a tomboy at heart, suspenders are a nostalgic item you should get asap. Throw on a crewneck, a pair of mixed-denim patchwork jeans, and you’re good to go! (You can also channel your quirky side by slipping into a pair of rollerskates, if you are so inclined.)

Cuffed Jeans & Fuzzy Topper

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While bootcut and flared jeans were definitely a favorite during the disco era, cuffed styles still have a place in ‘70s denim-adjacent fashion. Roll up your favorite straight-leg jeans and top them off with a fuzzy cardigan for a fall-appropriate retro look.

Flared Jeans & Tie-Front Top

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Embrace the disco spirit of the ‘70s by pairing a trendy tie-front top with flared jeans. Opt for a pair that fits snug around the thighs, as that particular silhouette will add a sleek touch to the look.

Ripped Tank & Heels

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A Metallic Jacket & Jeans

Laurent MAOUS/Gamma-Rapho/Getty Images

Cardigan, Turtleneck, & Clogs

Sophie Bassouls/Sygma/Getty Images

Jeans & A Cotton Tank

Colorful Turtleneck

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A Fitted Turtleneck Top & Jeans

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One of Gloria Steinem's most iconic looks featured a pair of dark jeans, a fitted turtleneck tucked in, and a wide leather belt color-coordinated to her shirt. If you want to create a 2021 version of her outfit, style a fitted long-sleeve top or bodysuit with your flared jeans.

Printed Blouse & Blazer

Classic Blazer and Platforms