If you have spent so much as five minutes on TikTok this week, you probably noticed that the next big fashion trend is on the rise, or should I say the next old trend. Twee fashion, synonymous with the 2014 tumbler era, is apparently back in style, so whip out your ballet flats and berets and hit the town.
Twee is a British term dating back to the early 90s, derived from the mispronunciation of “sweet.” To be twee is to be anti-cool in a generic sense, but to be actively cool within a niche hipster community. Films such as “Perks of Being a Wallflower,” “100 Days of Summer,” and “God Help the Girl” all showcase the twee aesthetic, not only with the clothes but also with the characters themselves fitting in with the indie hipster vibe.
At the peak of twee fashion, the aesthetic centered around oversized peter pan collars, skater skirts, hair bows, mini dresses, big black glasses, big hats, and a combo of ballet flats and tights. Many critical pieces of the aesthetic have transferred over to the 2022 version of twee, including denim jackets, fishnet tights, doc martin boots, and oversized knitwear paired with peter pan collared shirts. This new version of twee is less Zoe Deschanel and more Blair Waldorf, drawing major inspiration from her iconic thanksgiving look.
Like all things, there has been some significant justified backlash around the revival of twee. The trend thrived on the exclusion of larger bodies and exclusively produced white cover girls. During the heydays of the twee, the aesthetic was curated to fit a specific archetype of white and skinny. The twee aesthetic was also during the height of tumbler eating disorder blogs, promoting pro-anorexia content.
This aesthetic thrived during a toxic time for anyone over a size 2. With the twee revival alongside the not-so-body-positive y2k aesthetic, many fear the body positivity movement may be taking a backseat, and the resurrection of skinny is returning.