Fashion Lifestyle

Boho style: What it is and how to wear it

Boho style has gained a lot of popularity in recent years. And before many people could really understand what it was about, the meaning got lost and vague in a confusing way.

It’s common to see grunge looks, or very basic 90’s style outfits being called boho. Why? I have no idea, I swear! 😂 I can’t make the connection between high waisted jeans + choker and a cropped top with boho style! Maybe they get it mixed up with indie style? Or ore likely, with tumblr style! Seems like it.

Anyway, sorry for the venting at the beginning of the post hahah! In all honesty, I want this to be informative and useful. And everything I’ll rite here is based on theoretical knowledge 🙂

So let’s understand once and for all what this style really is, and how to put together beautiful outfits in this aesthetic.

For the sake of understanding, on this post we refer to boho as the fashion style that became popular worldwide mainly between the years 2005 and 2015.

BOHO is short for bohemian homeless. It’s a fashion style influenced mainly, but not exclusively, by the hippie of the 60s and the bohemian of 2 centuries ago. There is also a strong relationship with gypsy culture, it is even difficult to define a line that clearly separates boho and gypsy style.

Historically, immigrants and refugees from central Europe who arrived in Europe’s major capitals (mainly in Paris) were called bohemians. Among them, including, several Gypsies. His way of dressing, disheveled and carefree, and his unruly life in relation to that of the native population, called attention and caused fascination. The aesthetics of these people ended up becoming what is now known as Bohemian Style. This is the root of the style now known as boho.

The most ironic thing is that at that time, dressing so freely and carefree meant not caring about fashion, not caring about society and being a non-bourgeois. Current boho, or boho chic as some people call it, has become the exact opposite of that. A trend that fell in favor of elite trend-setters and influencers, and a source of income for super expensive brands.

How did the current boho trend emerge?

Among the super-tuned and fashion-crazy people, boho actually begins to emerge at the end of 2004. English actress Sienna Miller (above) and her dress style inspired by the film “Almost Famous” (Almost Famous) drew attention to his hippie looks, but with more urban influences in the pieces. The appearance of the actress at the Glastonbury festival in 2004 caused a furor in the fashion world and since that specific event, the boho style has started to grow. The twins Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen also adopted the trend at the time and greatly influenced the spread of boho in the United States.

As of 2007, many brands had already adopted the trend in their collections. Others, who already had a style-oriented essence, took advantage of the fever to gain notoriety and earn money. For example, Free People, probably the most boho brand there is. There’s also Stone Cold For, For the Love of Lemmons …

It is worth mentioning that, over time, both Sienna, the Olsen twins, and Free People themselves abandoned the original boho aesthetic, more faithful to bohemian roots and hippies, and adapted their styles to more current fashion trends, such as tomboy, minimalism, among others.

Boho style icons

The character Penny Lane played by Kate Hudson in the film Almost Famous is probably the most cultured figure in terms of boho style. Top model Kate Moss is also considered an unquestionable style icon, in addition to Sienna Miller, who directly influenced the emergence of boho as a trend. Other important figures in this scenario are Talitha Getty, Brigitte Bardot, and currently Vanessa Hudgens, Emily Ratajkowski, among others.

Main boho elements:

Basically, the shapes are loose and fluid. Nothing too fair, or too short. Femininity is present, but at the same time, pieces of the male wardrobe are adapted and reinvented. Anything that has fringes or rag-style cutouts matches the style.

Among the colors, patterns and prints, neutrals, earthy, grimy “white”, tie tye, paisley, floral and geometric with reference to tribal prints stand out. Colorful embroidery, typical of South American cultures for example, is very common. Skins and other fibers that refer to the natural as well.

In terms of accessories, the floppy hat was marked as one of the most characteristic accessories of boho, especially between 2010 and 1013. Overlapping and well-loaded jewelry worn at the same time are another trademark of the style. Other strong accessories are the turban, headbands, hats and pieces of Indian, Moroccan influence or inspired by indigenous cultures around the world. The flowers and feathers appear and refer to the hippie culture. Strap-on bags, especially the models with fringe are standard.


Boho looks inspiration

Shoes: heavy boots, with low, medium, high or over the knee, usually with laces, without slato and in neutral tones. Gladiator sandals and flat sandals of different types, but always with a natural footprint. Tennis comes into play as of 2015/16.

Key pieces: Tunics, long skirts, maxi dresses, flowing clothes in general, bell-bottom or pantaloons.

Hair usually looks natural. Due to its connection with the hippie style, boho asks for longer and “blunt” hair. The hairstyles are always very relaxing and effortless, with braids being a great icon (mainly from 2010 to 2013) with the appearance of the high semi-bun in 2015-2016

In some cases, the boho style of dressing also reflects a person’s lifestyle. The boho spirit is romantic but rebellious, appreciative of beauty and art and very connected to nature. Unhappy with the obvious and the conventional, curious and above all free.

Phew… long post! Hope it’s useaful.




By Lu Amaral

Aesthete: One having or affecting sensitivity to the beautiful especially in art - That's me! 💕 Graphic, digital and web design are my livelihood and my favorite hobby. That's how lucky I am.

Leave a comment: