Imagining life centuries or light years from now involves a lot of guesswork. And one of the big questions is what these future beings might wear. In sci-fi productions, it’s a given that characters will dress to match the setting. Don’t expect many time travelers in jeans and t-shirts. In fact, current fashion is generally off-limits in imagining what the future may look like. Let’s go through sci-fi fashion tropes and future fashion looks in films.
What’s Old is New Again
From space westerns to anachronistic styles, science fiction cinema has a knack for revamping the past for the future. While the popular space western subgenre dresses its characters in traditional old west attire like leather duster coats and suspenders, other anachronistic styles are also being brought to life. Fashion truly does go in cycles in the world of sci-fi. Perhaps with such futuristic trends, just in a century, we will be back in the fashion of the 1920s.
What are the most famous sci-fi movies? That’s right, Star Wars. The Jedi in Star Wars don distinctive robes that evoke a Renaissance painting or traditional attire, creating a purposeful contrast to the more commonplace clothing worn by the average Japanese citizen of the galaxy. Han Solo serves as an example of a character whose fashion choices remain consistent throughout his life. In contrast, the outfits in Starship Troopers are intentionally reminiscent of the military uniforms of Nazi Germany, instilling a sense of unease in viewers.
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Fashion of the Future Behind the Figure
Discover what the future of fashion would look like with the signature style choices frequently portrayed on-screen. One unmistakable go-to choice is the sleek and form-fitting bodysuit. Often crafted from an innovative, space-age fabric with athletic-inspired mesh, or futuristic leather armor, this trend has only grown more prevalent in today’s world. Take note of the evolution of this look in modern films like Dune, where the iconic Stillsuits have replaced hazmat gear as the preferred attire for characters.
Let’s take a look at the fascinating fashion evolution of 60s science fiction cinema and its impact on modern-day trends. Back then, the futuristic style was all about metal and hard plastic on the protagonists. This fashion inspiration from the movies went on to influence the real world and, in turn, future sci-fi films. The extravagant, maximalist style of the upper class in The Hunger Games is a prime example of this influence. Dive into the exciting connection between high-concept sci-fi and high-fashion ensembles.
Choose your genre
Did you know that different subgenres of sci-fi often have their own distinct dress codes? For instance, if you’re dressing up as a cyberpunk hacker, black leather trenchcoats and reflective shades are the go-to look thanks to the influence of the Wachowskis and their novels. This fashion choice has become iconic beyond just science fiction and would be perfect for a Matrix-themed Halloween costume. In post-apocalyptic sci-fi, black leather is also popular, but it’s usually worn in a state of disrepair to match the gritty tone of the genre. Take inspiration from Mad Max and his ragtag army of survivors and add some edge to your next sci-fi costume.
When it comes to sci-fi fashion, it’s all about designing the perfect outfit for a specific franchise. But there’s no one-size-fits-all approach – the costume has to fit seamlessly into the world it was created for. Just like real-world fashion, trends come and go within the world of sci-fi filmmaking. And occasionally, a visionary costume designer will completely redefine what deep space attire looks like. While some future fashion might be indistinguishable from what we wear today, there are definitely some sci-fi outfits that are eye-catching and boundary-pushing. Who knows what kind of fashion-forward concepts will emerge in the world of science fiction going forward?