Thursday, 26 February 2015

80s Ghettoblaster Shoulder Bags

I will be discussing a couple of very cool-looking shoulder bags further down this post, but I'd like to start with a look back at just what it was like growing up in the ghettoblaster age.

If you were a teenager in the 80s then chances are you owned a ghettoblaster at some point. I seem to remember that it was the cool-looking black dude (who was strutting around with a massive boombox on his shoulder) in the first Police Academy film that inspired me to buy one. I bought one from Dixons, but was never actually brave enough to place it on my shoulder. Indeed, living out in the sticks in Gloucestershire, no doubt, I would have been a laughing stock had I chosen to do so. The guy I am referring to was, of course, Larvelle Jones who was played by Michael Winslow, and he continues to make a living providing those amazing vocal sound effects, apparently.

JVC DC-33L Ghettoblaster with detachable speakers
JVC DC-33L Ghettoblaster
This is an original and rare JVC machine from the 1980s with detachable speakers and a built-in record deck, which meant you could use it like a hi-fi system at home. I'm not sure about just how practical the turntable was, though, and surely it wouldn't have been much use while on the move. I would still love to have owned one of these, though!

More popular were the twin tape deck machines which allowed you to record from a commercial cassette to a blank one. You could also enjoy simultaneous and continuous playback of two cassettes on many models, and tape your favourite songs off the radio, of course. The more expensive ghettoblasters were sturdy beasts with metal buttons and built-in graphic equalizers.

Silver Ghettoblaster Shoulder Bag
Ghettoblaster Shoulder Bag
Okay, so it's about time that I mentioned the shoulder bags which, I know, you've been itching to read about - after all, that is the title of this post! If you're looking for something that's quirky then this first bag certainly fits the bill. It's bursting with retro coolness and has a clean, simple design. This particular bag is only available in the UK - apologies if you're one of the many readers from the U.S.

Ghettoblaster Postman Messenger Bag
Ghettoblaster Messenger/Postman Bag
This second bag has a much more realistic 3D look to it and is half the price at around £14.99 plus delivery. A very similar design is also available at Amazon.com in the U.S.



Whether you want to breakdance around your bag or simply keep your sandwiches in it, it's going to be a real talking point. And can you imagine the look on the faces of your friends or work colleagues when they feast their eyes on your uber cool bag - they'll all want one!

You can see many more retro bags with an 80s theme at my website SimplyEighties.com.

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Saisho at Dixons in the 1980s

If you walked into a Dixon's store during the 1980s then you will have seen a whole range of products bearing a Saisho badge. Saisho was introduced in 1982 as Dixon's own budget brand. I bought a radio cassette player for my Austin Metro and was reluctant to splash out on one of the major brands, so the budget range was ideal for tight-fisted old me!

Despite the bargain prices, the technology was surprisingly good, and I have a friend who bought a CRT Saisho TV in 1989 that didn't give up the ghost until 2012.

Now, it's not often that a fashion blog will feature electrical equipment, but I feel that fashion extends to not just what we wore, but to just about everything we did in the decade - the food we ate, the music we listened to and the hi-fi's we played it on etc. Walk down any high street in the late 80s and you would, no doubt, have seen a number of people carrying a Saisho carrier bag - whether they would have been considered fashionable is open for debate, of course!
  
Saisho at Dixons carrier bag from the 80s
Saisho at Dixons carrier bag from the 1980s
Saisho personal stereo speaker system
Saisho MS54 Personal Stereo Speaker System
If you owned a personal stereo (such as a Sony Walkman) then these battery operated amplified speakers with rotary lead winder would have been very useful.

Saisho CTR6 Portable TV and Radio 1980s
Saisho CRT6 Portable TV and radio 


Monday, 16 February 2015

Manic Miner Gaming T-shirts


Manic Miner Willy T-shirt - Orange on Grey
Miner Willy Tee

Those of us above a certain age will remember spending many an hour back in the mid eighties frantically wiggling our joysticks trying to complete the platforming classic Manic Miner. Inspired by the Atari 800 game Miner 2049er, the game was initially released on the ZX Spectrum before being ported to other popular platforms including the Commodore 64 and eventually the Amiga.

Although not quite as well known as major characters such as Mario or Pac-Man, Miner Willy quickly found a cult following, and these days the coolest retro gaming fans can be seen wearing T-shirts and drinking out of mugs to celebrate a vintage platform game that once won a Golden Joystick Award in the magazine Computer & Video Games.

This first tee shown above is available in black, olive, brown or charcoal, which each one featuring a different coloured Willy character. The orange on grey is my personal favourite. Produced by Refugeek Tees, the shirt can be bought at Amazon in both the U.S. and UK.




Such is the popularity of the character that there are quite a number of different designs available from retro gaming suppliers such as VectorBomb, Old Skool Hooligans and Gaming T-shirts as well as mainstream supplier Fruit Of The Loom.

Manic Miner 80s Ringer T-shirt
Retro 80s Ringer Style T-shirt
Not available in the U.S.
I really like this ringer style shirt by Fruit Of The Loom which has a very 80s feel. It's made in the UK and available in Small, Medium or Large sizes. The tee itself is made from good quality 160gsm 100% cotton, so it's made to last and the price is very reasonable, too.



Now, if you like a bit of colour in your life then this design may be more to your liking;

Old Skool Hooligans 5 Colours Manic Miner T-shirt
5 Colour Miner Willys by Old Skool Hooligans
This eye-catching gamer T-shirt is available for sizes up to 3x extra large and although made in the UK, is available to buy in the U.S., too - the company promises fast shipment and ship each day across the pond.



I've highlighted a few of my favourite designs for this post, but you can see everything available using the following links;

View All Manic Miner T-shirts at Amazon.com
View All Manic Miner T-shirts at Amazon UK

There are many more Retro Gaming T-shirt ideas at my website SimplyEighties.com.

Commodore Computers Logo T-shirt





If you're a Commodore 64 or Amiga fan then you may also want to check out the range of cool retro shirts available.

Commodore T-shirts at Amazon.com
Commodore T-shirts at Amazon UK

Related Posts;

Atari Retro Gaming T-shirts
Space Invaders T-shirts
Best Pac-Man T-shirts



Thursday, 12 February 2015

Baywatch Lifeguard Costumes

Baywatch David Hasselhoff Costume
Baywatch Lifeguard Costume UK
Also available at Amazon.com (US)
Many would argue that the Baywatch TV series was more synonymous with the 1990s than the 80s. However, the show's origins lie firmly in the 80s with the debut series airing in 1989. The lead character, David Hasselhoff, is also very much an 80s TV star, and there is no doubt that the success of his role as Michael Knight in Knight Rider helped him to secure his major acting role in Baywatch.

If you're looking for a costume idea for either an 80s or 90s themed party, or even an event with a nautical or retro TV theme, then the Baywatch theme is a quirky and cost-effective choice.

The first costume for men is basically a T-shirt and shorts which is ideal for fun dress-up during the warmer summer months and also easy and comfortable to wear. There are actually three separate outfits available, with the other consisting of longer style shorts and red jacket top - many guys will be more comfortable with the longer style which makes this a handy alternative - and a fun muscle chest costume.

You will notice that the guy in the first photo is also carrying an inflatable float, and this is a fun prop for creating a more complete look. Also available is a whistle and belt bag which will further enhance your costume.

Lifeguard Costume Version 2
Buy in the U.S.
Personally, with the state of my knees I would feel more content with the longer shorts!

Baywatch Muscle Chest Costume for Men
Baywatch Muscle Chest Costume
Buy in the U.S.
This third choice consists of an all-in-one outfit and is officially licensed.

Red Lifeguard Costume for Men
Unofficial Red Lifeguard Costume

If you're on a tight budget then you will be interested in the non-official costume which still looks pretty decent and will save you a few pounds. Unfortunately, this one is not available in the U.S.

More 80s Costume Ideas for Men (UK)
More 80s Costume Ideas for Men (U.S.)





Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Bros T-shirts

Bros "When Will I Be Famous" single 1987
I still have vivid memories of crazy teenage girls in Bros T-shirts screaming wildly at the latest boy band sensation back in 1988. In their debut single they asked the question "When will I be famous?", and the answer was pretty clear - immediately! Actually, that's not quite true, the song originally peaked in the British charts at an unremarkable No.62 in 1987. However, when a reissue rocketed to No.2 then fame was quickly thrust upon the band.

In recent months, T-shirts adorned with 80s teen pop band have seen a resurgence in sales through my website SimplyEighties.com. The popularity of festivals and concerts such as 80s Rewind probably play a part in this. So, for this post I'm going to show you the latest T-shirts featuring Matt, Luke and Craig, which is a good idea seeing as I've already titled the post "Bros T-shirts".

With the most popular choice of 80s party T-shirt being the classic "Frankie Says Relax" and "Choose Life" designs from 1984, a Bros tee is a good choice if you would prefer to celebrate 1988 instead. There are three designs available in the UK, and, thankfully, they're all decent ones.

Black and white Bros Poster T-shirt
Mono Bros Poster Tee £14.99
The most popular T-shirt features a black and white poster image that was, no doubt, adorning the bedroom walls of a large number of teenage girls back in the late 1980s. The tee (by Retro Tees) is available in six sizes from 6 to 18, which is another reason for its popularity. It is, of course, ideal for 80s events, festivals, concerts and parties. Please note that all prices quoted in this post are subject to change.

Colour Bros Poster Tee £14.99
If you prefer a bit of colour in your life then this second T-shirt will be more to your liking. This one is also produced by Retro Tees and available in the same range of sizes for the same price.

Bros "When Will I Be Famouse" logo T-shirt
Bros When Will I Be Famous Logo T-shirt £14,99
This third and final tee features the logo that featured on the band's debut single. Once again, it's produced by Retro Tees and is available at the same price and in the same range of sizes as the T-shirts featured above. Now, your hardest decision is deciding just which one to go for - the choice is yours!

Related posts;

80s Girl T-shirt for Ladies
I Love the 80s T-shirts

You can also see a wide range of 1980s T-shirt ideas at my website and don't miss the Bros page if you were a fan of the band.





Saturday, 31 January 2015

Bravo Magazine in the 1980s

Bravo is a hugely-popular teen magazine that was first published in 1956, with its very first issue featuring Marilyn Monroe on its cover. The German-based publication is distributed across Europe in German-speaking countries such as Germany (of course!), Czech Republic, Poland etc.

Interestingly, the magazine features a controversial section entitled "That's Me!" which used to feature nude teen models from the age of 14. The age was increased to 16, although this is still illegal in some countries.

During the 1970s and 80s the magazine was easily selling 1 million copies of each issue, with the figure peaking at around 1.4 million during the 1990s.

Bravo Magazine August 1981 ft. Adam Ant
Bravo August 1981 ft. Adam Ant
Here is Adam Ant with his iconic white stripe across his face gracing the front cover of an issue from August 1981. Inside are a diverse range of posters featuring Kim Carnes, Iron Maiden, Adam & The Ants, Tommi and John Wayne.

Bravo Magazine 1984 featuring Paul Young
Bravo in 1984
By 1983, the magazine was looking even more 80s with its multi-coloured title. However, the pop industry is a fickle business and by 1984 it was now Paul Young who was flavour of the month. This issue also features German pop star Nena and Frankie Goes To Hollywood who gained a big German following.

Jason Donovan on the cover of Bravo Magazine in 1980
Bravo October 1989 ft. Jason Donovan
By 1989 the teen-pop sounds of Stock, Aitken and Waterman were dominating the music charts and Jason Donovan featured on the front cover in this issue from October 1989. Inside are Posters of ex-Frankie frontman Holly Johnson, the extraterrestrial puppet ALF and French actress Sophie Marceau. Boy band Bros featured in the stickers section, along with the iconic 50s film star James Dean, Batman and pop star Sandra.





Saturday, 24 January 2015

80s Paint Splatter Leotards

80s neon paint splatter leotard
80s Neon Splatter Paint Leotard
During the 80s fitness craze, splatter paint designs became highly popular on leotards and leggings. A paint splattered leotard was usually worn with plain or shiny leggings. Also popular were splatter leggings worn with a plain or shiny leotard, but it was rare to see both the same design of leggings and leotard together, although the rules of fashion were there to be broken back in the 1980s, so I'm pretty sure that there were some fitness freaks who wore both together.

I would recommend wearing plain or shiny leggings in pastel or neon shades with the leotard above for a classic 80s workout fashion style.

Unfortunately, leotards or bodysuits adorned with a splatter paint design are very hard to find, but I managed to find a very 80s leotard at Amazon.com as shown above. Sadly, this isn't available at the UK store.

However, leggings are a different matter and there are several designs available at both the UK and U.S. Amazon stores.

Neon 80s Paint Splatter Leggings
Neon Paint Splatter Leggings

Splatter Paint Leggings at Amazon.com

Splatter Paint Leggings at Amazon UK



If you're from the UK then you can see a wide range of 80s leggings ideas at my website SimplyEighties.com


Thursday, 22 January 2015

80s Rewind Festival Rucksacks - Backpacks

There appears to be an ever-increasing number of 80s festivals and events these days, and this probbaly explains the increasing number of rucksack and bumbag sales through my website SimplyEighties.com.

For such an event you want to be wearing something suitably eighties, and there are a number of bags that are absolutely ideal for festivals and concerts such as 80s Rewind. Of course, these bags are also ideal for adding a touch of 1980s style to your camping holiday, hiking trip or school trip, too.

80s Bum Bag

80s Bum Bag by Eastpak
80s Style Bum Bag/Springer Bag by Eastpak
I adore this bum bag which is so 80s it hurts! Featuring a funky retro print, it's absolutely ideal for wearing at an 80s event and includes an adjustable waist strap for the perfect fit, a zipped security pocket to the back and a double-zipped main compartment. There are actually 36 designs to choose from in the range, although this one is by far the most eighties!

80s Buddy Bag

80s Design Buddy Bag by Eastpak
80s Buddy Bag
This smaller-sized cross-body bag (buddy bag) is also available in the same funky design and includes an adjustable webbing strap, slash pocket to the front, double-zip fastening, a padded internal sleeve pocket and handy headphones port at the back.

80s Rucksack

But it doesn't stop there! There is also a rucksack available featuring this print;

80s Festival Backpack
Eastpak 80s Print Padded Rucksack/Backpack
Perfect for 80s Rewind, Jack Up The 80s or just general camping, walking etc. This rucksack featured a front pocket with zip fastener, generously-sized main compartment, adjustable padded straps, back piece, top handle and a 30 year warranty on materials and workmanship.

Animal print, splatter paint designs and clashing colours were hugely popular during the 1980s, and here are some more wonderful 80s inspired designs that caught my attention;

Londale Neon Leopard Print Backpack
Lonsdale Neon Leopard Print Back Pack

80s Splatter Paint Back Pack
80s Splatter Paint Back Pack
Multi-coloured Zebra Print Rucksack
Multi-coloured Zebra Print Rucksack

Ladies Leopard Print Bum Bag
Ladies Leopard Print Bum Bag

You can read much more about 80s Fashion at my website SimplyEighties.com



Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Girls Wonder Woman Costumes

If you're as old as I am, then you will remember the original Wonder Woman TV series which aired during the 1970s and into the early 80s. Lynda Carter played the lead character and became something of a pin-up during her time playing the role. However, the very first appearance of Wonder Woman was way back in 1941 in a December issue of All Star Comics - no, I'm not old enough to remember that!

Anyway, if you're looking for a decent novelty/fancy dress costume idea for your daughter (maybe for Halloween?) then you may not have considered Wonder Woman. You'll find one of the best ranges at Amazon where the top suppliers are all selling their wares.

See all outfits at Amazon.co.uk
See all outfits at Amazon.com (U.S.)

Girls Wonder Woman Costume
The most striking costume is this first one featured above by Rubies. It really looks authentic and is available for ages 3 to 10 years. It includes a dress with cape, belt, boot tops, bracelets & a headpiece.




However, don't rush off to buy one just yet because there is a nice alternative I'd like to show you which is also available from the Rubies store.

Cute Wonder Woman Costume for Girls
This officially licensed costume definitely has a more cute look to it with the attached tutu skirt (little girls love a tutu!) and is available for ages 2-6 years. It includes the dress with attached cape, headpiece and gauntlets




Of course, there are plenty of other superheroes that your daughter(s) can dress-up as including Supergirl, Batgirl and even Spidergirl. The following links will allow you to browse the full range;

Girls Pink Supergirl Costume


Girls Superhero Costumes at Amazon UK
Girls Superhero Dress-up at Amazon.com



Sunday, 11 January 2015

Dead Threads Gothic, Punk and Rock Skirts

Dead Threads Gothika Skirt
Dead Threads Gothika Skirt (sizes 8-14)
Whether you're simply into gothic punk fashion or you're looking for ideas on creating an 80s punk, rock or goth style costume for a party or event, the exciting Dead Threads clothing and accessories range is guaranteed to inspire you.

I discovered the Dead Threads store on Amazon.co.uk (Threads of the Dead at Amazon.com) while creating the punk rock clothing page on my website SimplyEighties.com. Whether you're male or female, I can almost guarantee that you will find something of interest. You may find the prices a tad expensive for fancy dress purposes, although you will end up with a quality item of clothing that is unlikely to fall apart in one evening.

80s Rock and Halloween Skirts

For this post I would like to show you some of the best ladies skirts from the range, and I'm going to start with this fabulous skirt featured at the top of the page. It has a little bit of everything including side popper stud fastening, chains with cross charms, ribbons, lace and contrast stitching. It would look particularly fabulous for Halloween, of course. The price is £34.99 as I write which is pretty reasonable. The item featured has red stitching, but you can also purchase the same style skirt with purple stitching.

If this skirt doesn't "float your boat" then how about this one...

80s Style Tiered Gothic Rock Skirt
Dead Threads Tiered Crucifixion Skirt
This tiered, Madonnaresaue skirt is ideal for creating an 80s rock look. It features black fabric which is printed with silver crosses, thorns and skulls and features a lace trim with ribbon lace up front. Add items such as fingerless,  fishnet gloves and a stack of gummy bracelets on your arms, and fishnet tights to get an 80s vibe.

Punk Mini Skirt

Checked 80s Punk/Bondage Style Mini Skirt
Checked Punk Mini Skirt
If you're looking for something a little different to the standard tartan mini skirts then this is for you. Available for sizes 8 and 10, this mini, tiered punk skirt features frilled layers of black and red checked material, black netting, red rose and spider webs design and another layer of black net. Another band of the red and checked pattern goes around the waist. Hanging from the waistline are buckled bondage style straps with metal eyelets.

Gothic Punk Dress

Dead Threads Graffiti Punk Mini Dress
Dead Threads Graffiti Mini Dress
Now, this looks fantastic! It's described as "a unique panelled dress with lots of awesome details". On closer inspection the dress features a paint splattered print, eyelet straps and a corseted back. It also has a mesh lace underlay.

Tartan Punk Rock Mini SKirt by Hell Bunny
Hell Bunny Tartan Mini Skirt

Visit the Dead Threads store on Amazon.

For more inspiration I can also recommend browsing through the Hell Bunny Punk Clothing range.

You'll also find more ideas on the Punk Rock Fancy Dress Costumes page at my website.

Related posts on this blog;

Tartan Punk Costumes
Spiked Clothing for Women