Skip to main content

The 5 Most Iconic California Fashion Trends of All Time

The 5 Most Iconic California Fashion Trends of All Time

Learn about the top 5 iconic California fashion trends that have shaped global style and continue to inspire today. Team


3 min read

April 20, 2023

From the sun-kissed beaches of Southern California to the bustling streets of Silicon Valley, the Golden State has always been ahead of the curve when it comes to fashion. Throughout the decades, California has given birth to some of the most iconic fashion trends that have left a lasting impact on the global fashion scene. In this article, we'll explore the top five most unforgettable California fashion trends that have shaped the way we dress and continue to inspire designers and fashion enthusiasts alike.

Skate fashion is a style that can be put together and still feel stylishly lazy. It's a free form of fashion that stands the test of time.

The Timeless Cool of Skate Culture

In the 1960s, California's skate culture gave birth to a unique fashion trend that blends casual wear with athletic functionality. Skate style staples like Vans sneakers, graphic tees, and loose-fitting jeans have transcended generations, proving that the laidback, effortlessly cool aesthetic still resonates with today's fashionistas. One of the most enduring California fashion trends, skate culture has inspired countless brands and designers to create apparel that is both stylish and functional.

Skateboarding's rise in popularity during the 1970s and 1980s led to the widespread adoption of its distinctive fashion. High-top sneakers, knee-high socks, and beanies became ubiquitous in the Golden State, and the trend quickly spread to other parts of the world. Today, the influence of skate culture can be seen in streetwear and athleisure, two fashion categories that dominate the contemporary fashion scene.

Boho chic is a perfect style for the consistently warm weather found in California's major cities.

Boho Chic: A Love Letter to the 70s

When it comes to the Bohemian chic trend, think flowy fabrics, earthy tones, and vintage-inspired patterns. This 70s-inspired style remains a California classic, epitomizing the carefree and creative spirit of the Golden State. From maxi dresses to fringe jackets, the boho trend continues to thrive in modern fashion. One of the most enduring California fashion trends, boho chic has its roots in the counterculture movement of the 1960s and 1970s, when artists, musicians, and free spirits embraced a more eclectic and unstructured approach to fashion.

Nowadays, boho chic remains a favorite among fashion-forward Californians, who love to mix and match textures, patterns, and accessories to create unique, individualized looks. The trend's emphasis on comfort and self-expression has ensured its continued popularity, and its influence can be seen in the designs of countless contemporary fashion brands.

Recomended businesses

Show me
Recommended Businesses near

Discover the best of California. Our recommended businesses are top-quality and are committed to their communities.
A simple hoodie can be styled in a nearly limitless number of ways.

The Ubiquitous Hoodie: Silicon Valley's Uniform

The humble hoodie has become a symbol of Silicon Valley's tech-savvy entrepreneurs and start-up culture. Comfortable, versatile, and minimalist, this functional wardrobe staple has transcended its casual origins to become an iconic representation of the innovative spirit that fuels California's tech scene. One of the most recognizable California fashion trends, the hoodie is now worn by everyone from CEOs to college students, and its adoption by the tech industry has given it an entirely new level of cultural significance.

In recent years, the hoodie has even made its way onto the runway, as high-fashion designers have embraced the garment's versatility and potential for reinvention. From luxe materials and bold prints to innovative construction techniques, the hoodie continues to evolve as a fashion staple, proving that even the simplest of garments can become iconic in the right context.

When summer hits, it's time to bust out the surfer fits.

Surfer Style: Riding the Waves of Fashion

California's love affair with surf culture has had a lasting impact on fashion. Boardshorts, Hawaiian shirts, and flip-flops are synonymous with the laidback, sun-soaked lifestyle of the West Coast. From legendary surfers to contemporary beachgoers, this iconic look remains a quintessential part of California's fashion identity. As one of the most iconic California fashion trends, surfer style has left an indelible mark on the global fashion landscape, influencing everything from swimwear to casual attire.

Surf-inspired fashion first gained traction in the 1960s when surfers began wearing functional and comfortable clothing that could transition easily from the beach to the street. Today, the surfer aesthetic continues to thrive, with many brands offering modern takes on classic pieces like boardshorts, rashguards, and sandals. The style's emphasis on comfort, freedom of movement, and connection to nature has made it an enduring favorite among California's fashion-forward population.

Denim is a timeless choice that feels essentially California.

The Classic Denim Jacket: A Golden State Staple

No list of iconic California fashion trends would be complete without the denim jacket. Timeless and versatile, denim jackets have been a go-to fashion choice for Californians since the 1950s. Whether worn with a maxi dress or a simple white tee, this wardrobe essential embodies the effortless, casual-cool vibe that defines California style. As a staple of the state's fashion landscape, the denim jacket has proven itself to be adaptable, making it the perfect piece to complement the ever-changing trends of California fashion.

The denim jacket's origins can be traced back to the rugged workwear worn by miners, cowboys, and railroad workers during the 19th century. However, it was in California that the garment truly found its footing as a fashion statement, becoming a symbol of rebellion and youth culture during the 1950s and 1960s. Today, the denim jacket remains a beloved classic, available in a variety of cuts, washes, and embellishments to suit every style and taste.

From skate culture to boho chic, these five iconic California fashion trends have each left an indelible mark on the state's sartorial landscape. As the birthplace of some of the world's most influential and enduring styles, California continues to be a hotbed of fashion innovation, inspiring designers and trendsetters alike to push the boundaries of what is possible in the world of fashion.

Need help with a home improvement project? Get a free quote today!

Enter Your Zip Code

Enter Your Zip Code

RELATED Articles

Discover More

fueled by the power of California love
We're committed to helping you discover the places, people and businesses that make our state Golden. Our online publication, updated daily, brings you all the content you need to live your California dreams. And that's just the beginning…
Purpose section
Purpose section