Sometimes the best of ski fashion isn’t hanging on a rack in an Aspen boutique — it’s gingerly folded up in the winter closet of a once-avid buckle bunny, waiting for a second life on the slopes with a modern alpinista. These retro pieces run the gamut, from those worth every penny of their once four-figure price, to the kind of Michael Jackson-inspired threads best zipped, buttoned or (God forbid) buckled with a hefty dose of irony. Shop on, bunnies!
Wear with: Attitude. For: Apres-ski drinks.
As Gwen Stefani demonstrated in Mammoth this week, leopard print and ski wear go pole-in-hand. And if a musically talented fashion icon makes it a slope-side staple, you probably should, too. This Russian-inspired take, available on eBay for another 23 days, might be better suited to drinks on a Brighton Beach pier than an actual ski slope, but the fur-lined sleeves are well-suited for standing out on the apres-ski deck.
Wear with: Irony. For: Powder Days.
A stone-faced Victoria Beckham and slightly-more-smiley Mariah Carey have showed us that the one-piece suit is not just for recreating Mentos commercials. (Although please feel free to do that and sent results here.) The onesie can also mean you’re serious about your powder days, even when you’re wearing something inspired by Saved by the Bell. Just be prepared to ante up to sport the look. The market for discarded retro ski suits has sparked heated auctions on eBay and other sites, driving prices into the hundreds of dollars. (Vintage pieces are still a better value, however, than their modern counterparts, which can sell for $1,100 on the low end.)
Wear with: Swagger. For: Bar Hopping.
With three more months of cold winter weather, why limit the joy of ugly sweaters to the holidays? With the right fur-lined leggings and matching earmuffs, this lime-green patterned turtleneck might be the chicest piece of ski-inspired fashion to enter your local bar, whether you’ve made it to the slopes or not. Snag it now on eBay for less than it cost to see Aspen Extreme in 1990.
Wear with: False Pretension. For: Pre-Ski Coffee.
Olivia Palermo showed us the joy that brightly colored moon boots can bring this week, and while these styles can scarcely count as retro (we’ll call them retro-inspired), it’s impossible to leave them off the season’s must-own list, particularly at $29 — a fraction of their $129 retail price.
Wear With: Glee. For: Every Occasion Possible.
This ski-specific Solomon fanny pack tries to call itself a “Waist Backpack,” and you’re welcome to as well — as long as you wear it with the intended spirit of glee that only a “Fanny Pack” can inspire. For optimal effect, pair with a vintage ski suit and pack with Slim Fast bars, the Better of Dead cassette tape soundtrack, Juicy Fruit gum, and of course, Mentos.