Saturday, October 30, 2010

Military Fashion

A collection “soldiers of our heritage”  by designer Nuno Gama presented in Lisbon Fashion week Portuguese has a strong military reference mixed with traditional Portuguese clothing. The collection, inspired by a longing for immense nature spaces and large shelters, had felt army coats with natural leather belts, comfortable shearling jackets, pea coats with fur collar or lining, short jackets with leather strap details mixed with pauliteiros with their full white look & colorful minhoto-style kerchiefs. The faces of models were covered with Mexican style wrestling mask.

                 Leather straps                                                     Military style Buttons

Different interpretation of camouflage                             Leather belt on arm and buttons and military color

Formal interpretation of military fashion with leather belts and buttons on formal coat.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Collection inspired by bra of 1950's

During 1950’s women deprived of war wanted the glamour in their life. Bra’s was the answer to the desire of glamour which provided the correct pointed circular stitched conical shape of the era and the support silhouette for girls who wanted to imitate the curves of film star sweater girls like Lana Turner and Jane Russell. Girdles were adopted to help achieve those contours. Roussel corselette also became popular during 1953 which constituted of upper bra with the perfect cleavage gap for low cut d├ęcolletage

Corselette                                                                              Bra in 1950
Lana Turner in costume designed by Walter Plunkett 1956 staring in MGM film "Diane"

John Galliano designed a fall/winter collection for Dior  inspired by behind-the-scenes documentary photographs taken more than half a century ago as Monsieur Dior dressed his cabine of mannequins for shows. The collection was based on the vanity of half-dressed models  so that hip-emphasizing basques, girdles, lace-edged slips, and petticoats were hybridized into brightly colored variations on the classic wasp-waisted silhouette of Dior's New Look.


The same cone shaped bra that has been attached to skirt with a huge bow.

Here the lapel of the coat gives a illusion of corset and underneath the coat there is that cone shaped bra which is partially visible.

In this design the designer has altered the cone shape and the sharpness of age old conical bra has been portrayed by the fabric attached over the bra.

In the pink full skirted evening gown the impression of corselette mingled up with bra is visible. The straps coming down from bodice part to skirt reminds of girdles.

In the white gown the upper bra has a cleavage gap with half cups similar to corselette of 1953.

Current trends in Jeans and its future

Denim cloth made its advent in 18th century as the choice of clothing for trade workers, slave laborers and plantation workers. The strength and durability of the cloth was the reason for its acceptance by the workers. Now Jeans made of denim cloth are often referred as casual wear and with time it’s again being transformed in to work wear and can even dressed up for evening wear. Today designer jeans is becoming one of the must have items. There are numbers for brand and styles available in market. According to me the two most popular cuts for today’s market are boot cut and skinny jeans.
Skinny jeans as the name suggest are skinny or body hugging all the down to the ankle. This style was first introduced in 1960’s. During 1970’s it was a staple item ans remained popular in 80’s but in 1990’s skinny was no more fashionable. In 2005/6 it made a comeback and now the style is really taking up the market.
Boot cut Jeans are tight till the knee and flares out a little to the ankle to make way for boot. Boot cut is to some extent a safe choice for almost everyone. For a person who is really thin or heavy skinny jeans is not a good choice as it can make them look like a stick or for heavier person it will not hide the curves of body. In contrast boot cut will suit these body types better and will balance out the body frame better.
There is one more style that is becoming popular for teenagers are slightly baggy on top and tapering very little around the calf. It has pleats at the waits like trousers.

Jeans has always been associated with color blue and today also the basic blue or indigo color and dark blue color hold their place. Although colors like white and grey are popular these days but nothing can beat the basic blue color. People constantly look for comfort in their most preferred casual wear jeans so the material like denim mixed with lycra are really popular. According to jeans buying guide this is what is really popular among the customers.

Innovation in denim is a constant thing is designers have been working to give it a refreshed look. In the coming future the what we will se is the development in washes and finishes of denim fabric. Recently Royal College of Art held a project “Planet Denim” and challenged the students to focus on the design and finish of the iconic “5 pocket” denim jean. The purpose was to develop denim jeans for a sustainable planet. The work of three students was short listed. Aleksandra Domanevskaya presented very interesting concept of ‘Fade Jeans’. The concet is to offer customers an opportunity to modify their jeans and design their own pair which they will value. The appearance of jeans can be modified in terms of color and wear by the customer himself. The functionality is based on  leaving the dye semi finished. Consumers can wash them to their desired level of fade and then fix the colour of the jeans in the washing machine with a sachet of dye fixative provided. The material of jeans will be recyclable and the stitching thread used will be Lyocell which is biodegradable. Read more about this at
The future of denim is about appearance and designing of jeans like Current/Elliott has introduced a four pocket jean where one back pocket is missing

Monday, October 11, 2010

Silhouette of 1920 in current fashion

Tubular Dress
Tubular dress in 1920 had a distinctive rectangular shape from past decade. It was also known as tunic or chemise.

In the past few years the silhouettes of 1920 has been revisited and reintroduced by many designers. Tubular dress has been revived by designers in fall 2008 and even in fall 2010. In 20’ s tubular dress was rectangular shapeless dress with flat chest. In 2008 Designers like Rodarte, Reyes, Christian Dior and Reem Acra mordenized this silhouette for their 2008 Fall collection. In this season designers droped the waist of dresses and had beading and fringing look.

 Marc Jacobs presented a collection in 2010 that has the impressions of 20’s flapper or tubular dress. The dresses were different from the historical version in terms of fabric, the dress for Fall RTW 2010 collection by Marc Jacobs was made in translucent fabrics. The designer also played with the hem line there were varied hem lines, knee length, mid thigh and ankle length.
                  Marc Jacobs                                                                       Marc Jacobs
                  Marc Jacobs                                                                     Marc Jacobs

The other silhouette of 1920 that was prominent in Fall 2010 RTW Runway was knickerbockers. Knickerbockers began as a sportswear during 20’s was knee length pant that was made tight at bottom using a band.

Max Mara’s collection for Max Mara brand featured, cozy coats pinched at the waist by masculine-style belts; jackets and cadet-style cabans; knee-length skirts; uniform shirts; knickerbockers; tapestry knits; new tuxedos offering something for every season. Fall 2010 was about pragmatic sportswear for working women and Max Mara capitalized this trend by offering Knickerbockers sports wear from 20’s. The silhouette is pretty much similar to the past in terms of volume around the leg but there was variety in the length and pleats at the waist in some designs. The other difference it was attached to the blouse in some designs.

                     Max Mara                                                                           Max Mara                                 
Max Mara

The other collection in fall 2010 RTW that included this silhouettes was Marc by Marc Jacobs. The designer has beautifully altered the silhouette to fit in current fashion. There was one design in which two different fabrics were used to create excitement and the length was lower calf. The fullness of pleats around the waist was set up to look like peg pants. The high wasted pants really reminds of knickerbockers of past.

          Marc by Marc Jacobs                                                           Marc by Marc Jacobs
 Marc by Marc Jacobs

Historical Draped/ tailored garments

The Doric Chiton
Doric chiton was an ancient draped garment. It was a rectangular fabric measured approximately one foot longer than the wearer's height and the width was twice as long as the measurement from fingertip to fingertip. The top edge of fabric was folded down to form the Apotygma (a poertion of fabric folded over the top) further the rectangle was folded in half around the wearer's body with the fold on the left. Fibulae were the kind of pins used to pin up the chiton at the shoulders and then a belt was worn at the waist to control the fullness. The portion of fabric which was bloused when drawn up and allowed to hang over a below the belt, forming a pocket or baggy fold was called Kolpos.



Melia is a draped garment held together by two silver fibulas ( ancient from of safety pin). It is straight swaths of cloth without tailoring or seams which is draped around the body like roman Toga or Indian sari. It is a costume used by Tunisian dancers.


Tailored Garments
Cotehardie was a unisex garment tailored of 14th to 16th-century. It was made to fit the torso and arms, usually with a row of buttons down the front as well as down each fitted sleeve from the elbow to the wrist. The length of cotehardies were different for women and men, for the former it was floor length and for later it used to be cut very short.

Killt is a knee-length pleated tartan skirt. It is worn by men as part of the traditional dress in the northern Scotland. Originally "the kilt" was allegedly invented in 1725 by an Englishman.

The Jinbaori is a japanese warlord's outer coat or vest. Sometimes it is spelled as Jimbaori ans also called a "campaign coat". There were broad lapels like panels from women’s jacket and  were often highly ornamented with symbols of strength and courage. They were worn by high ranking samurai on battle field for protection of elements and to be visible to both the troops and the enemy. The picture is from Edo Period (1615-1868), 17th century Japan Silk, felt, metallic thread Lacquered wood.

Haik is a large piece of cotton, silk, or wool cloth worn as an outer garment. It can be dated from Egyptian time and is worn in Moroccan, Arab and north Africa. As the image indicates it is a long piece of fabric which is wrapped around the body in very similar manner of Indian sari.