Photosource: Jute & Jackfruit.
Fashion & Style section of The NY Times reported today that the dress is still alive (at least for now). While fashion editors and designers have been predicting that the dress is going extinct for some time now, even going so far as to say it will be fully obsolete by September 2008, others beg to differ. Women in particular seem to be voting otherwise.
Anne Slowey of Elle magazine recently summed up the emerging trend with her conclusion that “the eye is looking for something new.’ While on the set for the upcoming Fashionista show, she added “and so is the psyche.’ Slowey went on to say that come August, 2008, the dress will be completely out, and the ‘trouser’ will make its way front and center for the fashion-conscious woman.
While this may be true, it is interesting to look back through the past few decades and consider when women wore dresses and when not. In particular, for women who raised their children in the 50’s and 60’s in the US, the dress was all they knew; it was the staple outfit. Then in the 70’s, the daughters of those women, resisted that style opting instead for the bell-bottom and pant-centric styles. Following that generation, I believe it is fair to say that the pant and/or trouser remained the norm. As women became more and more empowered in the workforce and in public life, the pant, pant suit and its entourage became commonplace. Sure, there were variations to the suiting angle, many of which were sexy and flattering, but all in all pants dominated withe more ‘feminine’ looks at the fringe.
Speaking from my own experience, as a product of the 70s and 80s, I must confess I never wore a dress until after graduate school unless it was for a wedding, special occasion or major event. I was a pants person through and through as were many of my friends and colleagues.
Now however, as I enter my mid-thirties, I find I am re-discovering the dress. Even when it comes to professional clothing, I am experimenting more with the feminine, sophisticated angles, to showcase (not shy away from) my feminine side. As I look around me as well, I find other women doing the same. Why is this? Well, it is interesting to look back through history because it seems, one reason might be that for many women, who perhaps grew up on pants, the dress is something new. It also happens to be something that is incredibly flattering on a wide range of body types and is one of the simplest outfits to put together and look absolutely stunning. It seems that in this era, more and more women are feeling empowered enough to get back in touch with our feminine side, while at the same time, exerting our independence and strength.
The women interviewed by the NY Times summed up the benefits of the dress nicely by saying:
- “I feel glamorous in a dress, and it’s easy.”
- Another woman stated that she finds that dresses are slimming, and they cover all the problem areas and highlight all the curves.”
- Finally, another woman added, the dress ‘is very easy and very flattering — a no-brainer, really. It’s comfortable, and you can easily go from day to night. And guys like it because it’s so feminine.”
I personally think that the dress will continue to remain popular for seasons to come. The dress is not on its way out, nor going extinct as it provides too many advantages for women: great fit, comfortable, easy to wardrobe, and unfailingly flattering…
Along these lines, up and coming organic and sustainable designers are increasingly experimenting with variations on the dress. They are designing dresses that not only look terrific, and feel great, but also use organic and sustainable fibers and are therefore much better for the environment and for our skin.
One such designer, Kelly Lane, known for her use of color is doing just that. Kelly has a beautiful collection of dresses to light up the spring and summer – all made with organic and sustainable fibers. Likewise, up and coming online boutique Jute & Jackfruit will be offering a selection of her colorful dresses for fall as well another designers.
What is your opinion on the ‘dress’? is it going in or out? I’d love to hear from you. Greencottonblog@gmail.com
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