From the Archives: LGBTQ Pride Parade Street Style Through the Years

It’s LGBTQ Pride Month and that means rainbow stripes, activist efforts and plenty of parades, both in the U.S. and across the world.

This year, Pride takes on extra significance because June 28, 2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots, thought by many to be the launch point of the gay rights movement.

Man in yellow with red head piece marchesLGBTQ Pride Parade, Toronto, Canada - 24 Jun 2018
An attendee at the 2018 Pride Parade in Toronto.
CREDIT: Shawn Goldberg/Shutterstock

We’re taking a look back at all the over-the-top costumes, bold stripes and barely there looks that have constituted parade street style through the years, from the 1980s through the present.

While Pride offers no shortage of color, vintage black-and-white images from the ’80s show how much parade street style has evolved. An image from the San Francisco parade in 1983 depicts two women sharing a kiss while perched atop a motorcycle. The woman in front wears a strapless black top over jeans and boots — a moto-chic look made complete with dark shades and a pair of leather gloves.

Katy Dough, left, and Tracy Gamble of San Francisco kiss each other on a motorcycle during the 13th annual Gay Freedom Day Parade in San Francisco, . Both women are in a motorcycle group that calls themselves "Dykes on Bikes." The parade attracted an estimated 300,000 people and was dedicated to the victims of AIDS diseaseGay Pride, San Francisco, USA
Women on a motorcycle at the 1983 Pride Parade in San Francisco.
CREDIT: Eric Risberg/Shutterstock

Another ’80s archival photo shows two attendees at the London Pride Parade in coordinated looks. They’re clad in sweaters with button-down shirts underneath, sporting black work boots.

Lesbian & Gay Pride, London 1988People
Attendees of the 1988 London Pride Parade.
CREDIT: Shutterstock

As far as footwear goes, platforms have been a popular choice for Pride Parade attendees over the years. For instance, in 2008, an attendee of the London Pride Parade was photographed at Piccadilly Circus wearing a neon fringed skirt with bejeweled platforms and an over-the-top headdress.

Gay Pride Parade 2008 participants in Piccadilly CircusGay Pride March, London, Britain - 05 Jul 2008
At the Pride Parade 2008 in London, a participant wears platforms with a neon look.
CREDIT: Paul Brown/Shutterstock

Despite the popularity of soaring platforms, many have reached for walkable styles, like flip-flops or sneakers. A young duo at London Pride in 2017 looked cute with rainbow attire and handmade signage. One child wore multicolored rubber boots and the other stepped out in black and blue sneakers.

Young revellers Rosa and Toby attend the London pride celebrationsLGBT Pride Parade, London, UK - 08 Jul 2017
Children in cute, age-appropriate shoe styles at the 2017 Pride Parade in London.
CREDIT: Amer Ghazzal/Shutterstock

This year, an attendee at a Pride parade in Winchester, England, was photographed in a ruffled lavender minidress with Vans sneakers and a pink boa.

Participants in the annual Hampshire Pride, which makes it's way from The Great Hall through the town.Hampshire Pride parade, Winchester, UK - 23 Feb 2019
A participant at the 2019 Hampshire Pride parade in a purple ruffled minidress with Vans sneakers.
CREDIT: Geoffrey Swaine/Shutterstock

Flip through the gallery for more Pride Parade style over the years.

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