What is fashion? What does it mean to be fashionable or stylish in Western culture? These questions have been asked for centuries, and the answers that have been given are many. Fashion today has many different definitions, but for this blog post, I am going to focus on a particular definition of fashion – what is the “western” definition of fashion in your opinion?
What is Western Fashion?
Western fashion is a style of dress that originated in the western world. This style is characterized by its simple, fitted lines and its use of colours that are typically associated with the climate of the West.
History of Western Fashion
The history of western fashion can be traced back to the ancient Greeks and Romans. The Greeks are credited with being the first to popularize tunics and skirts as clothing, which were later adopted by the Romans.
According to Fashion historian Stephanie Coontz, “the defining characteristic of the classical dress was its extreme simplicity.” Here are the fashions of different timelines:
Women’s clothing was effortless: a cloak or cape, a headdress such as a veil or a hat, and stockings.
The early 1500s
Women began wearing more decorative gowns and dresses. In 1530, Catherine de Medici became queen of France and started wearing extravagant Renaissance-style gowns that influenced French fashion for centuries to come.
The 17th century
In England, women wore high-waisted breeches called culottes that showed their legs off at the ankle. This style influenced European fashion for many years to come.
Queen Elizabeth banned men from wearing breeches in public because she thought they looked too masculine.
Marie Antoinette’s wardrobe was destroyed in the French Revolution, so it is impossible to know exactly what she wore during her reign. However, according to Coontz, she likely dressed in “a wide range of styles including neoclassical court fashions heavily influenced by Louis XIV.”
John James Audubon published his book “Birds of America,” which featured illustrations of American
The History of Clothing
The history of clothing is a long and complex one that dates back to ancient times. In the beginning, people wore whatever they could find to cover their bodies. Over time, different cultures began to adopt particular styles of clothing, which eventually evolved into what we know today as fashion.
During the 16th century, people were starting to become more interested in fashion and began wearing more elaborate clothes made from fabrics such as silk and cotton. This style of clothing became popularized by the aristocracy and was eventually adopted by the rest of society.
Today, western-style clothing is still widely popular all over the world. It can be found in every corner of the world, from high-end fashion stores to street vendors selling knockoff versions of designer brands.
There are also a variety of online retailers that offer a wide range of western-style apparel, making it easy for anyone to find what they’re looking for no matter where they are in the world.
How Does Western Fashion Differ from Other Styles?
There are a few key differences between Western fashion and other styles worldwide. For one, western fashion is much more conservative in terms of what is allowed. This means that accessories, colours, and patterns are typically more restrained than in other styles. Clothing may also be made from simpler materials, such as cotton rather than silk or wool.
Another key difference revolves around how clothing is worn. In most cases, clothing in Western fashion is typically worn with either tall boots or closed-toed shoes.
This contrasts sharply with traditional Asian and African dress codes, which usually require lower-cut skirts and open-toe shoes to minimize the appearance of feet and ankles.
Overall, these differences can create a distinct look for people who wear Western fashion compared to others around the world.
The History of Trends in Western Fashion
The history of Western fashion is a long and intricate one, with trends constantly changing and evolving. Fashion has always been an important part of the culture, and has often been used to convey messages about society and the wearer’s personal beliefs.
It has always been influenced by colonialism, religion, social status, and other factors. For example, during the Victorian era, high-society women wore long skirts to show off their expensive gowns. Today’s popular fashion trends are often based on current events or popular celebrities. But that’s not it, fashion styles arose from the general public as well, especially outfits that were affordable and easily available to people. Street fashion, such as the Goth style, emerged in the 1980s in London, highly influenced by the Victorian era and rock music. The fashion statement is still followed by many today. To dress like a goth girl, the outfit mostly consists of black color, ripped pants, leather, fishnet stockings, boots, piercings, and dark makeup.
When it comes to fashion, there are a few key points that should always be kept in mind. First and foremost, you should dress for the occasion. Whether you’re attending a formal event or just popping into the grocery store, make sure your outfit is appropriate for the situation.
Second, pay attention to what’s popular right now. Trends come and go but one thing that always stays constant is how people dress. So if you see something on a trend that you love, don’t be afraid to try it out!
And finally, never forget that you can wear whatever you want as long as it looks good on you. If that means pairing link bracelets and necklaces (you can source them from Jacobs The Jeweller and the like) with body con dresses and boots, for example, then so be it. That said, here are some tips to help you style your wardrobe like a fashionista:
- Start with an outfit concept in mind and then build from there; this will help keep your look cohesive
- Pay attention to colour and complementary tones; these will help take your outfit from drab to fab
- Take advantage of layering techniques; adding several pieces of clothing together can give your ensemble added volume and shape.