The last heard apprehensive compliment, “Oh my god she is so fashionable’ or the genuine admiration of “she makes her own fashion” or a geeky rendition of “she and fashion, ugh” … what were they really talking about, the latest Ferragamo or Gucci wear, the slick sense of individual style or not so slick self styled dork.
Plethora of fashion styles have been created and marketed over the centuries. Let us dig deeper and you shall see the real story. To investigate the elemental sense of fashion, lets look at how fashion evolved over a period of time.
The 12th Century had long tunics, with hose and mantles or cloaks. Women wore long tunics or gowns, characteristic of upper class fashion. 13th century saw blue as fashionable and also adopted by the king. 14th century saw the length of female hem-lines progressively reduced.15th-century Europe was characterised by a series of extremes and extravagances, from the voluminous gowns called houppelandes with their sweeping floor-length sleeves to the revealing doublets and hose of Renaissance Italy. Hats, hoods, and other headdresses assumed increasing importance, and were swagged, draped, jewelled, and feathered. Various fashion’s emanated from France, Italy. Voluminous clothing worn in an abundance of layers marks fashion in the period 1500–1550 in Western Europe. Contrasting fabrics, slashes, embroidery, applied trims, and other forms of surface ornamentation became prominent. Regional variations in fashionable clothing that arose in the 15th century became more pronounced in the sixteenth. In particular, the clothing of the Low Countries, German states, and Scandinavia developed in a different direction than that of England, France, and Italy, although all absorbed the sobering and formal influence of Spanish dress after the mid-1520s. Fashion in the period 1795–1820 in European and European-influenced countries saw the final triumph of undress or informal styles over the brocades, lace, periwig, and powder of the earlier 18th century. In the aftermath of the French Revolution, no one wanted to appear to be a member of the French aristocracy, and people began using clothing more as a form of individual expression of the true self than as a pure indication of social status. The 2010s have thus far been defined by a revival of austerity era period pieces, 1980s neon colors, and from late 2012 onwards, unisex early 1990s styles influenced by grunge and skater fashions. In the early 2010s, many mid and late 2000s fashions remained popular in Europe, the United States, Latin America, Australasia and East Asia, especially the indie pop look which largely drew upon elements of 1970s garage rock and contemporary alternative fashion. In 2013, the early 1990s inspired anti-fashion had made a comeback in the UK, USA, and Australasia among women aged 18–30. Popular upper apparel includes ugly sweaters, khaki super dry trench coats, T-shirts with blazers, plaid, oversized flannel shirts worn or tied around the waist, oversized T-shirts, padded gilets, and crew neck sweaters. Crop tops were also reintroduced, but they didn’t prove popular in stores. In the UK and the US, popular bottom apparel includes skinny jeans, leggings, parachute pants, and high-waist shorts. Desirable footwear included rain boots, flat sandals, stilettos, Keds, TOMS Shoes, Chucks, Sperry top-siders boat shoes, flat knee high riding boots, Uggs, Hunter brand rain boots, Ballerina flats, cavalier boots, gladiator sandals, combat boots, Doc Martens, and The Timberland Company.
I skip from the 18th century to now, depicting how fashion, which was upper class, followed, was actually already becoming individual statements and, how a plethora of fashion styles co-exist.
The trick here is to adorn yourself with clothes, which suit your individual personality and not an era prototype. If you are comfortable being anachronistic in our taste of music then clothes and accessories too can be your personal sense… If you are the kinds who love to explore and do new stuff, by all means go ahead. If you like a particular style from the latest collection by all means indulge.
Cause the first step towards being truly fashionable is not to be a victim of fashion.
When did you see the last marketer display fashion … they are always displaying aspiring personalities and styles and individual personas. The 13th century even had a color, which depicted style, does it really go with you, or are you happier , smarter & sleeker stylised with tiger prints?
(Coming from a core marketer by profession)