Crime of Fashion: Bad grammar on slogan t-shirts

Productofthe90s Remember that ‘Product of the 80s’ dress‘ Topshop were selling not so long ago? Well, here’s a version from ASOS for those of you who are even younger than the Topshop dress-wearers, and are, in fact, products of the 1990s instead.

Have you spotted the deliberate mistake, though? Yes, that would be “product of the 90s” – no apostrophe required. Plurals don’t have apostrophes, kids – don’t listen to ASOS and Topshop, listen to The Fashion Police. We’ll keep you right. Or we’ll try, anyway.

More crimes of fashion


  • June 1, 2007


    You would not believe all the shirts I have seen that are grammatically incorrect. One I can think of right off the top of my head is the “Your Stupid” shirt. I feel like telling the wearer, “It isn’t ‘your,’ it is ‘you are – YOU’RE.'” Continue the fight against poor fashion!

    View Comment
  • June 4, 2007


    I actually asked my Language Arts teacher about this. You are, in fact, incorrect. According to the actual rules of the English language, this is the only exception to this rule, and the correct way to write the plural of a number is WITH an apostrophe. Just thought I’d let you know.

    View Comment
  • June 4, 2007


    Actually, Amber, you’re correct.
    The Apostrophe Protection Society indicate that apostrophes have no place in plurals because they do not represent missing letters or possession, and that the following should be written:
    The 1990s were very exciting years.
    The 1990’s were very exciting years.
    (and so forth)
    So, unless they REALLY meant to say “Product of the ’90s”, but confused the placement of the apostrophe, ASOS are wrong-wrong-wrong! (As opposed to ‘a little incorrect’.)

    View Comment
  • June 7, 2007


    Yay! Someone else in the world with good fashion AND grammar sense! This misuse of apostrophes drives me utterly BATTY. Years ago when I worked for Express they had signs on their rounders, in their windows saying “Metro T’s 2/$30” I was embarrassed to even put them up in my store. I see apostrophe abuse EVERYWHERE these days!

    View Comment
  • June 20, 2007


    It can be correct wither with or without an apostrophe:
    I learned in my grammar classes way back when that an apostrophe should be used to pluralize numbers and acronyms (CD’s, DVD’s).

    View Comment
  • October 13, 2007


    Cori, you’re not comparing two equal things. One writes about the “1990s” (no apostrophe). However, leaving off the first two digits is different and, with some style books, writing about the “90’s” is perfectly correct.

    View Comment
  • May 23, 2008


    Hmm.. Maybe the “Your Stupid” shirt was meant to be funny! Like how that person is saying someone is stupid, but the person who’s saying it is the stupid one for misspelling it?!
    With all these wacky shirts out now.. who knows.
    ’90s is without an apostrophe between the 0 and s (according to my AP Stylebook)

    View Comment