With its proximity to Manhattan and strong Jersey pride and history, Hoboken can sometimes have a bit of an identity crisis when it comes to fashion. It’s not New York… but it’s different from the rest of New Jersey. It’s its own thing. This duality is often seen in the closets and drawers of Hoboken residents — many of whom have strong Jersey roots themselves but have chosen to settle in the Mile Square, only a short drive to Manhattan. It would be easy to say that Hoboken fashion is the same as New York City’s, but there are some trends that specifically stick out when walking down Washington Street or along the waterfront. We took to the streets and chatted with local Hoboken residents to learn more about Hoboken fashion trends — as well as the shops and boutiques in the area where you can get similar looks. Read on to catch a glimpse at Hoboken fashion trends + where to find them locally, as told by Hobokenites themselves.
The Athleisure Look
When Hoboken residents were asked the question “what is Hoboken fashion?” — there was one answer that almost everyone noted: athleisure. Some even specified LuLulemon as the standard trend amongst young Hoboken women. This trend is definitely not just being seen in Hoboken — ever since the Covid-19 lockdown in early 2020 and the rapid change to remote work, comfortable clothing has been at the top of everyone’s laundry pile.
Specifically, matching sets of leggings and a sports bra in pastel colors seem to be the norm throughout the town. Matching sets are mostly paired with crossbody fanny packs, which have come back around to being in style and are now called ‘belt bags’ — ah-hem, friends, they are definitely still fannys — comfortable socks, and running shoes.
Editor’s Note: If you’re looking to get some of these pieces locally, some spots to get them are: Lululemon, Fleet Feet, and Athleta located on Washington Street.
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Another popular comfort-forward style in the athleisure category would be the bike shorts and oversized t-shirt combo. Big claw clips holding up a messy bun and large 90s-style sunglasses complete the entire look, a la Hailey Bieber. With many working from home full time, athleisure is likely here to stay, and we certainly aren’t complaining.
When it comes to getting more dressed up for a night out on the town, there are several looks that are common. For one, “mom jeans” and a crop top are a go-to option for hitting the bars. Silk slip dresses and silk tops are back in the forefront of on-trend outfits, as well as dresses and tops with big puffy sleeves, often spotted at local brunch spots.
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A lot of today’s current trends are borrowed from the ‘90s. Baggy jeans, cropped tee shirts, chunky sunglasses, bright colors, and sneakers are at the forefront of street fashion, and Hoboken residents are leaning into the trend.
For the Guys
Men’s fashion is also borrowing some trends from the ‘90s, such as graphic t-shirts and baggy jeans. On Sundays, the streets of Hoboken are filled with sports fans wearing their favorite football team’s jersey with pride. During commuting hours, the cool weather brings about button-down shirts and quilted vests that are very popular for office workers. Most of the men we spoke to about their personal fashion sense emphasized comfort and simplicity.
“I like to go for something clean-ish, with a pop of color here and there. You know. Simple,” one Hobokenite told us.
“You’ve got to keep it simple, classy — it always works,” another Hoboken resident confirmed. “No matter the season.”
What’s on the Horizon
The ‘90s will be in full force this fall. Denim and leather are predicted to be some of fall 2022’s most popular trends — and we ain’t mad about it. Expect to see full leather outfits strutting around, and denim jackets covering big comfy sweaters. Fashion experts are also advising elder millennials to dust off their old pairs of clogs, because Gen Z is going to be bringing them back into the mainstream.
Gen Z and Millennials have also continued to grow their appreciation of thrifting to find their new favorite styles. In a world filled with fast fashion options that can cause more harm than good, shoppers are taking to their local thrift and vintage stores in droves.
Editor’s Note: Hoboken has great options for those looking to thrift, including St. Mary’s Advocates Thrift Store on Garden Street, Vintage on First, Revival Vintage, and Mint Market in both Hoboken and Jersey City.
Overall, Hoboken tends to lean more casual compared to Manhattan. Residents love their athleisure and gym wear, in addition to the professional office attire that is still necessary for commuters.
One thing that remains true, however, is that Hoboken residents love to look good. We may be wearing bike shorts and a big baggy tee — but you can bet that we look damn good doing it.