Saturday, April 18, 2015

P is for Parachute Pants

This month I'm participating in the A to Z Challenge. My theme is the 80s. Today's letter is:




Parachute pants are often associated with the 80s but in truth, they were only popular for a short period of time. These are parachute pants:



They're usually confused with the pants M.C. Hammer made famous in the very early 90s in his U Can't Touch This video.



Break dancing popularized parachute pants, which were tight synthetic nylon that felt just like a parachute to the touch.



Although they were around as early as the late 70s, Bugle Boy successfully marketed parachute pants to teenage boys, taking them to their height of popularity in 1984. Soon they were replaced by the new trend...two-toned jeans.



But parachute pants are forever doomed to be mistaken for Hammer pants. One more time, for the record...parachute pants:



Hammer pants:



Hammer time!


60 comments:

  1. Shudder. Hammer pants always strike me as the before part of a Depends advertisement.

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    1. They are odd looking! I had a pair but they weren't that extreme...they had a matching jacket.

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  2. Another fashion mistake! I remember the two tone jeans fondly!

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    1. I LOVED my two-toned jeans. They were light in front, dark in back and VERY comfortable.

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  3. Elephant's Child - hilarious!
    Yes, that was an awful style. May it never come back.

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    1. The parachute pants weren't too bad...they seemed like they'd be comfortable. My parents wouldn't let me buy a pair because they were $100 or so and they correctly predicted that by the time I wore them a few times, they'd be out of style.

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  4. Having graduated from college in 79, I was so far out of it in the 80s!

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    1. Yeah, this is the first decade I've been completely unaware of what's in style, except for what I see people wearing on TV.

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  5. My daughter made herself a pair of Hammer pants and she said they were so comfortable but I just hated them but never told her. haha. I'm not sure if I was under a rock but I don 't recall the parachutes pants. I'm sure my kids do.
    Thanks for bringing all this to our attention Stephanie. I'm not rating very well on the trends.

    Have a PERFECT day.
    Hugs,
    JB

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    1. I had a pair but I don't think I found them comfortable. Just weird.

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    2. I hope you're feeling better today Stephanie. Pollen hasn't started here yet but it won't be long. We had a sprinkle of snow this morning but as soon as the sun came up it was gone.

      JB

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  6. I was trying to guess what you'd post for P! Parachute pants were all the rave. Same as Hammer's song, not so much his pants, though. Now that song will be stuck in my head all day:)

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    1. Q was the tough one. And U. I puzzled over U for the entire month of March, going back and forth with what I'd post.

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  7. I totally forgot about Bugle Boy! My husband had a lot of their clothes, including a pair of parachute pants.

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  8. Never heard of those, I think Hammer's are more comfy :) I kinda like the current trend of sweatpants in that style, kinda like rider's sweatpants with the baggy thighs ... it looks good on hot people

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    1. I think what I remember about the Hammer pants is that if you crossed your legs, it felt all funny, like the cloth was tangled somehow.

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  9. I don't remember parachute pants, maybe we called them something different in the UK, or they never made it over the pond...
    Sophie
    Sophie's Thoughts & Fumbles
    FB3X
    Wittegen Press

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    1. They were only popular here for a brief time--mid-80s-ish. I think I was in 8th grade or so at the time. The guy I had a crush on had a pair, so I was paying attention.

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  10. I remember these very well. I tired on a pair and they made me look super fat with all their zippers and shininess.Thanks for the memories, Stephanie. lol

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    1. I never even tried on the parachute pants. My parents said absolutely no. They were sold at Merry Go Round at the mall but everything in Merry Go Round was extremely overpriced.

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  11. I had a pair, I thought I was cool... I was for the minute, until I felt like I was wearing a garbage bag with pockets. I was able to moonwalk, that was cool right?

    Jeremy [Retro]
    AtoZ Challenge Co-Host [2015]

    There's no earthly way of knowing.
    Which direction we are going!

    HOLLYWOOD NUTS!
    Come Visit: You know you want to know if me or Hollywood... is Nuts?

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    1. I think you're the first person today who admits to actually having owned a pair!

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  12. I always thought parachute pants were those ridiculous pants Hammer wore in his video. The first one doesn't look so bad. Is that weird of me to say? :P

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    1. Parachute pants really weren't around very long...they didn't make a lasting impression. These pictures are probably the first a lot of people are even seeing of them.

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  13. I never even knew there were parachute pants. You ruined me with that knowledge now lol who'd want to wear those?

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  14. never wore parachute pants. but i remember the 'rustle when you walk' thing they did.

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    1. That's probably why they didn't stay around long. "Swish swish swish swish swish swish..."

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  15. My body type would never permit me wearing these - but I will say that my oldest son loved the "M.C. Hammer" look for a while. I'd love to post that on his FB page, but he'd kill me.

    Fashion...the ultimate betrayal.

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    1. I think they're also known as "harem pants!"

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  16. OH I wore the crap out of parachute pants, back in the day. Can't believe I did now. Not the best look for me...hahaha

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    1. You're only the second person (I think?) to say they actually wore them! I wanted a pair but they were too expensive. My parents wouldn't let me buy them.

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  17. Hammer pants were awful. Always hated them,but I'm old. Love the song though.

    Have a fabulous day. :)

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    1. They look ridiculous, but I remember owning a similar pair briefly.

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  18. Like the mullet haircut, let's hope parachute pants never come back!

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    1. I completely skipped mullets in my A to Z. You won't see a post on mullets here at all! It's my protest, I guess.

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  19. I never liked Hammer pants... just eww ... as far as parachute pants I never went that way either... I like lasting and classic styles ♡

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  20. The two-toned jeans make me laugh so hard. Just awful fashions! However, I bet they're very popular for costumes.

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  21. I'd be revealing my age here, but gosh I remember this era. :)
    Thanks for making me smile today, Stephie.

    Have a wonderful weekend!

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  22. Seriously hilarious. I never got into parachute pants, but I suspect they paved the way for synthetic fibers for pants in a lot of ways. I mean, a lot of the sporty pants people get at REI or whatever these days look suspiciously like parachute pants. And the two tone jeans, just horrible, especially the cuts where they just highlight your belly.

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  23. I often think of Hammer when I hear the term

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  24. This is one style I never did get into and neither did my kids and grandkids.

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  25. I could hear them walking a mile away-lol they were so stupid-so were the two-toned jeans. I swore |I would never own any and I never did. Now the hammer pants always reminded me of someone who didn't quite make it to the bathroom or a great way to shoplift (shhhh don't tell Winona Ryder)

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  26. Thankfully I didn't wear either :)

    betty

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  27. I wore lots of dresses or jeans. No parachute pants. No to MC Hammer!!

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  28. A fashion trend that I did not partake of. Whew.

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  29. You know something was a bad idea when it never comes back in style. :)

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  30. YES! Thank you for clearing that up. People always get it wrong.

    I used to have a bright red pair, which I proudly wore with my graffiti-on-a-brick-wall shirt. Only in the '80s.

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  31. Huh. I made that mistake myself. The more you know.

    Though I'm sure I've seen other pants of a style similar to your parachute pants around even today.

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  32. Definitely prefer the parachute to the hammer version.

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  33. Thankfully I never bought a pair of those. I saw a lot of kids wearing them in high school though.

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  34. I never had a pair of parachute pants. I was so deprived. :)

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  35. I loved my Hammer pants. Parachute pants looked good in theory, but the sound they'd make. Drove me crazy.

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  36. Hammer pant or men with no legs! Never understood those.

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  37. I'm glad I missed that fad! ;-)

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  38. I had forgotten about parachute pants! Those bring back some funny memories.

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  39. Unfortunately, I had a pair of parachute pants and a pair that could be considered MC Hammer pants. :)

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  40. I had no idea there was a difference - I am one of those people who did not know what parachute pants actually were - clearly :)
    Tasha
    Tasha's Thinkings | Wittegen Press | FB3X (AC)

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  41. Woot woot! Fun memory. Thanks for posting.

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