How fashion fell out of love with shopping centres

Mean Girls
Mean Girls

Back in the Nineties and early 2000s, the shopping centre was one of the few places groups of teens could hang out away from home. It’s something that was common the world over – especially the US. We saw it in movies too: remember Cher and co hitting the mall in Clueless? Or the Mean Girls gang doing the same in their matching pink tops?

For those with a nascent interest in fashion, the mall also presented an opportunity to spend pocket money on clothes at brands like New Look, Bay Trading and Kookai. My go-to look took a lead from the band All Saints – skinny-strapped tanks with baggy combat trousers and Buffalo platform trainers. Juicy Couture flannel tracksuits, boot-leg jeans and Spice Girls-style minidresses were also looks that defined the era.

Today though, the shopping centre looks very different. Traditional malls across the UK are

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