Friday, September 2, 2011

Fashion: Let's Bring Back the Renaissance!

I do not know much about fashion, but I know at least one thing: the fashion world loves to recycle old trends and styles.  Even though it’s the twenty-first century, we are told things like “you really need to wear these long hippie skirts” or “bell bottoms are back.”       

If fashion designers are willing to revisit the 1960s and ‘70s, I think they should look to even earlier eras for inspiration.  Why stop with the twentieth century?  Let’s bring back the Renaissance!   And English medieval fashion!  Every discerning girl needs a kirtle and a wimple in her wardrobe.  

I’m not actually advocating the return of Renaissance and medieval fashions.  I don’t see myself running errands wearing a girdle and velvet cape.  However, I would love to see the revival of fashion worn by the Roman nobility during Julius Caesar’s reign. 

If you think I’m crazy, watch an episode of the HBO series Rome
The dresses worn by the wealthy female characters make me gasp with jealousy (think flowy fabrics that are draped and cinched in the most flattering of ways).   But let’s limit the revival of Roman Empire fashion to women.  I don’t want to give men a blank check to run around in togas and gladiator sandals.  It’s bad enough when men wear short-shorts at the gym.  I would drop dead if 24 Hour Fitness was suddenly crowded with men in purple robes.

I also urge fashion designers to watch movies based on Jane Austen’s novels, especially the Keira Knightley version of Pride & Prejudice.  Fashion designers, please pay close attention to the dresses with flattering empire waists – they are beautiful and very practical for long, melancholy walks across the heath.  These dresses need to be available at Nordstroms, ok?

I realize the revival of fashions from the 1800s are unlikely.  For at least the foreseeable future, J.Crew and Banana Republic will not be selling fashions worn by the ancient Roman nobility and Elizabeth Bennet.* [Insert dramatic sigh].  But a girl can dream.

*I should not have to tell you this, but Elizabeth Bennet is the protagonist of Pride & Prejudice.  I’d like to be her friend except (a) she lived in England during the 1800s and (b) she’s a fictional character. 

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