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Shape/Volume

Lucy Adjoa Armah

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

To fully understand the significance of “volume” in fashion, it is necessary to discuss everything from the exaggerated shoulders in the trend for tailored power dressing in the 1980s to the unconventional draping and pleating of Issey Miyake. The prism of volume enables the unpacking of aesthetic traditions in dress and fashion that appear to have little in common. When designers utilize volume, they are often presenting a fantasy from a distant land or a reimagined time. When individuals choose

Women’s Blazers and Jackets of the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s

Tracy Jennings

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Women’s blazer and jacket styling in the West went through a number of iterations during the latter decades of the twentieth century. These fashion changes were often a result of prevailing economic, social, and technological conditions. The 1970s gave rise to disco. A booming 1980s economy was reflected in the exaggerated shoulders of the power suit. The grunge movement countered this fashion excess. An individualistic philosophy took hold in the mid-1990s, with consumers no longer feeling compe

Claude Montana

Lauren Downing Peters

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Designer Biography

Valentino, Spring/Summer 1985

Rosily Roberts

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Valentino’s spring/summer 1985 collection highlights the colors, patterns, and quintessential boxy silhouette that were to define his designs of the 1980s. Valentino was at the forefront of the trend for power dressing, one of the most important trends of the 1980s, and one that was to define the decade.

1980s Style: Key Themes and Trends

Jo Turney

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

The 1980s will always be remembered as the decade of power dressing: a time when clothes became big in terms of size and glamour. Shoulders were padded, skirts were fuller, taffettas were crisper, silks exotic, and colors more vivid. Ostentation was the name of the game and bold patterns, from animal prints to architecture-inspired decoration, emphasized scale and luxury. These were frequently inspired by TV shows and glossy magazines. Luxury was also the watchword in daywear, where tweeds and ca

John Rocha, Spring/Summer 1988

Nadya Wang

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

For the spring/summer 1988 season, the concept of power dressing still guided designers. Menswear continued to provide inspiration for both the silhouettes and the materials for women’s wear. Rocha offered work-appropriate looks with an overall softer feel, with added feminine details such as a crochet lace collar. The hourglass shape was key to the collection, with many of the dresses featuring a fitted bodice that opened up into a voluminous skirt. Rocha used different necklines to distinguish

Political Candidates and Dress

Susan B. Kaiser and Janet Hethorn

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. The United States and Canada 2010

Encyclopedia entry

In electoral politics, candidates face delicate balancing acts in matters of dress. They must represent (and therefore fit in with) the people they seek to serve; yet they also need to establish themselves as leaders who stand out/above. It helps to look good and dress well, but not to the extent that potential voters suspect the politician has little substance (and “only style”). Further considerations include the need not to appear too vain or self-absorbed. The ways in which political candidat

Class, Work, and Dress

Alexandra Kim

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. West Europe 2010

Encyclopedia entry

During the nineteenth century, clothing in West Europe was inextricably linked to a person’s class and occupation. Dress was constantly used to determine a person’s social status. Although there were obvious variations in occupational dress across the Continent, a worker’s clothing—whether in the countryside or the city—would have clearly indicated his or her place in the social hierarchy. Changing work patterns, a growing informality, and the fragmentation of the class structure in the twentieth

Gender

Gertrud Lehnert

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. West Europe 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The basic distinction between female and male dress in the Western world is between women’s skirts and men’s bifurcated trousers. Only in the twentieth century was this abandoned—but in one direction, since, even today, men do not wear skirts, despite some attempts by fashion designers. This does not indicate that trousers are more natural for men, but that in the West, they denote supremacy and masculinity. From the late Middle Ages onwards, increasing emphasis was put on gender differentiation

Milan as a Fashion City

Simona Segre Reinach

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. West Europe 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The importance of the city of Milan in the history of modern fashion is linked to the success of a particular model of production and consumption: fashion designers’ prêt à porter. Milanese prêt-à-porter, appearing in the 1970s and peaking in the following decade, expressed the ability to produce in industrial quantities a fashion created in close collaboration with a fashion designer. A key figure in the Milanese system is the entrepreneur-designer, a novelty in the history of fashion. Due to th

Dressing for Success: The Re-Suiting of Corporate America in the 1970s

Patricia A. Cunningham

Source: Twentieth-Century American Fashion 2008

Book chapter

During the twentieth century until just after the Second World War menswear included formal traditional suits (single or double-breasted, the former usually worn with a vest), and casual dress for a variety of informal activities and school. Casual dressing for non-work occasions had increased during the pre-war years especially during the 1930s, when casual trousers worn with sweaters, tweed jackets and blazers became the prescribed look for many (Craik 1994: 190–5). Despite an increased desire

Dress for Success in the Popular Press

Jennifer Paff Ogle and Mary Lynn Damhorst

Source: Appearance and Power 1999

Book chapter

Dress helps individuals perform business roles (Rafaeli & Pratt, 1993). Role dress, such as the men's suit, has the familiarity and history to serve as a significant symbol for management and administrative roles in business. Men's business dress has undergone centuries of development since 1666, when Charles II of England proclaimed a simplified, ‘useful’ three-piece suit for men of the court, business, and commerce (Kuchta, 1990). Dress that is a significant symbol has high consensus in meaning

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