11 Oct Acid House Fashion
Acid house wasn’t just about the music. The fashion was just as important as the tunes that powered the glorious Summer of Love.
Famous acid house clubs Shoom and The Haçienda are renowned for welcoming the ‘hip’ crowd, yet outrageous outfits would dominate warehouse parties and field raves, too. It’s just the way it was back then.
Below we break down some of the key pieces of clothing and accessories that contributed towards acid house being one of the most important eras in dance music.
If you hear the words ‘acid house’ and it’s likely the bright yellow smiley will come to mind. It epitomises what the acid house movement and the Summer Of Love was all about: happiness, joy and euphoria. Danny Rampling says he took smiley inspiration from a designer called Benzley and soon after smileys were seen everywhere in his club Shoom. The club even had their own T-shirts emblazoned with a beaming, yellow smiley. Watch vintage videos of the OG acid house raves and you’ll see plenty of smiling faces on the ravers. Makes sense really.
BANDANAS & BUCKET HATS
“We’re outlaws, we’re going around with bandanas on our heads, dancing in the fucking street,” Fabio recalled about the time acid house kicked off in the UK. A bandana being the accessory of choice could be linked to convicts or wanted men in the wild west covering their identity with one (acid house ravers were resented/ by the law after all), but we can’t be sure. All we know is that we’ve seen plenty of snaps of them tied round ravers heads.
The bucket hat was a favourite, too, not just for ravers but for a lot of people in the ’90s. You’ll likely see plenty at festivals these days, too.
A classic look. One baggy ass T-shirt and ridiculously oversized dungarees, sometimes with one shoulder strap hanging down, over the top. They were never too small or tight. It gets hot as fuck when you’re dancing all night long after all.
Buffalo Boots another Ravers Staple.
Because why not? Ravers would likely be dancing until sunrise and even when in a club the strobe lighting and lasers would be rather intense.
The Ravers used to live from a rave to a rave. The generation brought up by house music was somewhat similar to the hippie generation. They were free and all they wanted was peace, love and dance. The magic of the moment, when you hear the address and know that you will be there in a couple of hours with your friends, dancing to the magic sounds of acid house can not be compared to the way we party now.
“My own experience of Acid house past to present is having a great DJ, uplifting spirit, A good basement or warehouse underground space in the darkness with strobe lights & the crowed – as one, celebrating the 303 sound. No camera phones pointed at the d, just us together with the music melding into the sound” – Danny Rampling
POLICE VS RAVERS
When rave culture took over the world, the UK youth had to fight for their right to party. Section 63 of the 1994 Criminal Justice Act was the law that made raving impossible. The law forbid gatherings and police was raiding the suburbs and outskirts of the cities, stopping any activities they considered suspicious. On one of the occasions a helicopter and an enforced squad were sent to stop a… birthday party in a house outside a city.