isn’t it iconic | ‘don’t walk away’
By mixing grunge with athletic-wear, Jade flawlessly merged two divergent fashion trends of the 1990s.
Jade in ‘Don’t Walk Away’
The 1990s was the second golden age for R&B groups and it was a particularly prolific time for women vocalists. TLC, En Vogue, Destiny’s Child, and SWV all soared during the 90s. Going along for the musical ride was Jade, a three-girl group from Chicago who only released two studio albums but had massive success, particularly with their debut record, Jade to the Max which spawned four Billboard Hot 100 hits. Their biggest success came with the infectious, mid-tempo dance party classic ‘Don’t Walk Away’ which reached #4 on the pop music charts and helped push Jade to the Max to platinum status. The track went on to became one of the most dominant songs of 1992, as well as the entire decade.
About the Look
What a difference a year makes, and 1992 was certainly a pivotal one in fashion and pop culture. In late ’91, happy, vibrant colors and cheerful graphics still dominated, as they did in TLC’s ‘Ain’t 2 Proud 2 Beg’. But then Nirvana took over and within 6 months, grunge was inescapable. Jade’s video for ‘Don’t Walk Away’ was released in November ’92 and even though its booty bumping beat is the musical opposite of, say, ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’, grunge’s influence still creeps into the video in the form of plaid shirts and Dr. Martens. But even so, Jade mixes them with the athletic looks that were always a part of streetwear. Another micro-trend permeating at this time was campus style. This was not traditional ‘preppy’ fashion, it was more about wearing college sweatshirts and tees, even if you were never a student. And here, the ladies of Jade customize their tops by chopping, tucking, and knotting them to show just a sliver of midriff.