So, I heard the bad news, and I’m embarrassed that we haven’t seen much of each other in the last few years. Ok, a decade. According to Buzzfeed, your stock is way down, selling for only 11 cents a share as of last Friday. And word has it that you’re about to be delisted from the Nasdaq. That sucks, dELiA*s. That sucks a whole lot.
I just want you to know that I haven’t forgotten all the good times we’ve shared. Middle school is a miserable dungeon of feels and you were about the only thing that got me through to the other side. I know I’m not alone here. You provided stylish solace for all ’90s girls. We waited desperately for each new catalog to arrive in the mail, and then we scrounged up all of our pennies and/or begged for an advance on allowance so we could order those shiny new platform sneakers and Paul Frank graphic tee because both would TOTALLY improve our wardrobe.
You were pretty much our entire world in the ’90s, dELiA*s. Here are all the ways we’ll cherish and remember you. . .
You made it OK to basically go to school in our PJs
Remember when you made it cool for young girls to be comfortable at all times? Wide-leg pants, so wide you couldn’t even see our feet. And graphic tees with bold colors, beloved retro logos, and alternative designs that perfectly exemplified the classic, rebellious mood shifts we all dealt with as tween girls. We needed all of that, and you gave it to us.
2. You made dad-style cool again
Windbreakers and track jackets were cool for dads, sure. But you brought that ’80s outerwear swagger back in a major way. Also, it didn’t matter what we wore with these jackets. Everything just looked rad.
3. You gave us the least controversial tees
The tee selection was so cool, and so unlike anything we could find in our local malls, that we relied on you, dELiA*s, to show us new ways to wear our favorite items. The same tee could be paired with wide-legs or cargo pants one week, and the next, paired with a cute floral skirt. Genius. But most of all they were super non-controversial. That bunny rabbit was about as edgy as it got.
4. You introduced us to the ’70s, sort of
There was this weird moment in the ’90s when we, as a society, couldn’t decide if we wanted to pursue the next hot trend in fashion, or if we just wanted to give up and return to the looks of the ’60s and ’70s. This was that moment. You were part of this moment, dELiA*s. YOU gave us the option to embrace bright prints on polyester blends, with matching pants (of course). And we did embrace. Indeed we did embrace that moment.
5. You gave us some solid options to wear to our first pre-teen dance
Fancy school dance? Go with a silky satin dress. ALWAYS go with a silky satin dress. Lucky for us, dELiA*s, you always had plenty to choose from.
6. You gave us beauty with a sprinkling of grunge
Aww, remember this, dELiA*s? You gave us the green light to beautify ourselves the same way our favorite empowering ’90s singers were at the time.
If we were ever feeling blue and undervalued, we could just throw on some teal lipstick and show ’em we gave zero effs.
7. You knew we need a halter bikini and you came through (seriously, thank you for that)
I don’t know what bathing suit season was like for other girls, but for me, I only ever had two options: a barely-there string bikini that I was most definitely too young to wear, or a plain, boring one-piece. I didn’t want either.
But, dELiA*s, you gave all of us a third option. Something cute AND age-appropriate. Tankinis, halter tops with boy shorts, ruffled tops with bikini cut bottoms–these were all amazing options for ’90s girls. They were also mom and dad-approved because they were flattering and not too revealing, so yay for free summer attire.
8. You made the holiday season so much weirder
The gift section of your holiday catalog gave us a ridiculous amount of useless and fun things to add to our Christmas lists. It probably drove our parents crazy, but if we ended up with a strange alarm clock, trippy candles, or a lava lamp, we considered ourselves winners.
9. And the shoes. Oh, the shoes.
Platform shoes donned the feet of our favorite ’90s sheroes, including the Spice Girls, Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, and Romy and Michele, so yes, we wanted and needed all the platforms. You gave us a platform on every kind of shoe. We could be instantly taller in every life situation without wobbling around in a horribly uncomfortable heel.
Honorable mention goes to the jArRiNg FoNT and mad-libby messages across the top of every page.
For that, dELiA*s (and for everything else), we will always love you.