Ancient Egyptians wore black eyeliner and shadow to protect their eyes against the Sun. Byzantine way of dressing was a result of the rules queen Theodora introduced, probably as a result of her supposed way of living before she became the queen. Men wearing high heels in Venice was a result of regular floods and their masks, which we see today on their famous carnival were used as a protection in the times of plague. The flapper was a result of the first world war, hippy fashion a cry against the war in Vietnam and so on. So you see where I am going with this right?
"Fashion" in the past used to be a natural result of either some kind of a problem people were faced with or some kind of a mutual desire for change which resulted in a new way of dressing. The changes were so strong and the styles lasted for such a long time, that even today we look back to them in search of inspiration, aesthetics and even our own identity.
Let's take '20s per se. The first world war had expectedly influenced people all over the world resulting in the change of mentality and style of living in a global manner. The biggest changes were happening to women though, who after taking care of "male" business for the last four years, realized they can basically do what ever they put their minds on. Their new confidence boost resulted in practicality of their thinking and clothing. After being in charge of their lives for four years, women no longer felt a desire to be dependent of men. They wanted to work, play sports, drive cars, ride horses. Thus, the impractical way of dressing from the pre WW1 era came into question. Corsets were discarded, women were no longer meant to be a part of decoration, they were now persons with their own agenda and desires in life. The only logical result that came out of this new global change in women's minds was a fashion unique to the era but common to almost every woman on Earth. That is why when we look at the photos and illustrations from the '20s everything seems enchantingly beautiful. It's almost unreal when you look at it now.
It's almost unreal when you think of something so powerful today it's bound to affect the whole world and leave an echo on our everyday lives for the next ten years and result in a global change of mentality for the next century.
We live in an era that is fashion wise so intangible that trends pass in-front of our eyes weekly. There is no more a style unique and typical of our era to leave a mark in the timeline of fashion history. Do we even have OUR era? Is anyone going to look at the pictures of us in the future and think: "Wow, this is enchanting. This is so beautiful I'm going to use it as an inspiration. I wish people dressed this way today."?
|Photo by Jackie Lund from Flickr|
|Photo from Wikimedia|