United States Boys' Clothes: Early 21st Century (2000-2030)

Figure 1.--

As far as a prediction of changes in the coming new year, there is not much to look forward to, except the slimmer styles reemerging perhaps. I have noticed that more pro basketball players are wearing knee socks, at least one on every team, but not sure if this will grow or be picked up by the boys. A few years ago, during the crew sock boom, I was watching local high school basketball championships and the best players were wearing white knee socks with their uniforms, and I thought they might continued to carry it through their college years and perhaps pro level, but that really hasn't occured. I doubt if the media will beocme so conservative again to allow a proliferation of "proper boys attire." In my opinion, it would take decades to achive the traditional look again, after the proliferation of casualness that has occured. Too many people don't care how they look anymore, sad to say, and it shows. And I seriously doubt that a movie like Angela's Ashes will bring back the short pant fashion, even with the year 2000 retrospectives. Yet, if a streak of conservatism is affecting the scouting movement, there is the chance that the "outside" world might be next.

The 2000s

An HBC contributor reports on the popular fashions in the new school year: In California, the start of the new schools year brings out the newest fads and fashions for boys. Shorts are still very popular, especially the camp style (with the outside pockets) and the Carpenter style which contain a sewn on loop (for a hammer or other tool). Length's are shortening (to just below the knee), especially for older boys, the younger ones still seen to like the hideous mid-calf lengths. Cargo pants were quite popular..One retailer offered updated styling and knee tailoring with two front slash pockets, two inseam cargo pockets and two back patch pockets with self-adhesive closure. Button and zip closure. Colors were olive, sand, and khaki. White crew legnth socks are still preferred, some boys pull them all the way up and some push them down. Pant sizes are gradually shrinking back to normal, though they are still somewhat baggy. Docker style kacki's are the long pant of choice along with the ever popular blue jeans. Long and short cords seem to be on the way out. Another new style is the pants that have a zipper at mid length so that the pant can be worn a longs or shorts Shirts are varying from plaid button ups to Hawaiian, to the regular T-shirt. A few boys are even wearing knit polo shirts. Caps continue to be popular, especially the low crown style and less and less boys wear them backwards. Puka shell necklaces have become popular with the Junior High set. Earrings are disapperaing on the younger boys and the older ones seem to have two or more rather than one. Hair legnth is still fairly short and boys love to gel their hair in the N'Sync style and bleaching hair is still popular mainly with High Schoolers. The younger ones seem happy with just bleaching the tips of their hair and gelling them up. All in all, boys fashions seen to be going back to the conservative styles of the mid-80's. It will interesting to see if this trend continues or if boys clothes go off in another strange direction. I doubt we'll see short shorts, long socks and flared pants anytime soon.

The 2010s

The 2020s

Christopher Wagner

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Created: August 30, 2000
Last updated: October 27, 2001