The ’70s are back, baby! Or if you’re Anna Z Gray, they never really left. Anna, a 32-year-old writer-slash-model who likes to call herself “your internet vintage friend,” says if she could pick a favorite decade to wear and embody, it would be the ’70s.
“If I look in my closet, I can guarantee that the majority of pieces would be either from, or emulative of, the ’70s,” she says. And as the cofounder of resale marketplace Object Limited and an expert secondhand shopper herself, that’s saying something. (Psst—for thrifting tips and Anna’s thoughts on all things sustainability, head here.)
So when it came time to find a collaborator to style and show off our new 70s High fits, we called Anna and she said, “Far out! I can dig it! Let’s get groovy!”
Okay, she didn’t say any of that. But the sentiment was there. What she actually said was… “I spend a lot of time trying to figure out how to make vintage pieces from different eras look contemporary. And it might be the trend cycle we’re in now, but I could wear stuff from the ’70s head to toe—pointed-collar printed shirt, high-waisted flare pants, big sunglasses, a scarf in my hair—and I would actually look very modern. I love the ’70s because they’re classic, they’re fun and they’re flexible. You can go in so many directions. You can be like Studio-54 sexy and then also be like a professor at Berkeley. Even with just jeans and a T-shirt, it’s like, ‘But oh, the jeans are flared! And they’re high-waisted. She looks cool.’”
And you can look cool, too. Below—in her New York City apartment and in her own words—Anna incorporates her vintage finds with new Levi’s® stuff to leave you with ’70s-inspired outfit ideas that look and feel right on. (Get it?)
“Flared, high-waisted denim—very familiar, but also elusive. These are a great color, excellent shape and preeetty, pretty flattering. I just ate a bunch of noodles and you can’t even tell, so that’s saying something really significant, I feel. Things that I would wear with flared pants: a silky patterned button-up (that category probably makes up a lot of my closet) and a vest.”
“This is the same cut but in corduroy, my favorite material. It feels luxurious. It looks luxurious. And it doesn’t wrinkle. This rusty color is very cute and actually incredibly workable. The cool thing about flares or bootcuts is that you can hide knee-high boots underneath so your calves stay warm. Ha ha.”
“This jean is high waisted with a straighter leg. Still cute. These pants are a little bit long for me, but they’re kind of cool, like, ’90s in that way. Speaking of ’90s, this shirt is easy to replace with a one-piece bathing suit, leotard, tank top or a shorter bathing-suit-type top designed to be worn as a shirt. I’d also pair these slim-fit jeans with a vintage sheer shirt and a nude bra, or a neon green bra if I wanted to leave an impression. He-he. And then this is a Levi’s® jacket. A forever classic, really—the oversized denim jacket.
That’s something to remember: While I want people to seriously consider that you don’t always have to buy new, if you are buying new, it should be something you’ll keep for a very long time because you love it and it’s made of quality—whether it’s denim, a white button-up or whatever.
If you’re not sure you’re going to like something, you should definitely try it, cause that’s how we learn what we like, but the experimental stuff should perhaps be bought secondhand. Buy new when it’s something that will add value to your closet and that you’ll wear often. Then, because it’s well-made, when we ourselves don’t have it anymore, it’ll live on and become someone else’s vintage later.”