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Fashion Design Then Vs. Now

Fashion Design wasn’t always like this, as back in 1900 going to the 90s. Now it is a welcomed career choice among numerous institutions and universities, that offer courses in different areas of fashion. Fashion careers range from lingerie, children wear, womenswear, bridal, men’s wear, and more. Fashion designers were self-employed some still are, but a significant amount are pursuing careers in garment firms and export houses, or department stores and boutiques. Fashion Design is branched out to related fields such as; fashion journalism, fashion advisors, fashion Photographers, textile specialist, hairstyles, etc. In fashion design, there has also been an increase in designers learning and incorporating computer and technology for stages in production. Fashion Design has come along way from the 19th century of Charles Frederick Worth.

Evening dress 1898–1900 House of Worth French
House of Worth (French, 1858–1956) Evening dress, 1898–1900 French, silk; Length (a): 17 in. (43.2 cm) Length at CF (b): 42 1/4 in. (107.3 cm) The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Gift of Miss Eva Drexel Dahlgren, 1976 (1976.258.1a, b)

Charles Fredrick Worth is said to be the first fashion designer in the world that was well known, dating back as far from 1826 to 1895. He was the first designer and stylist to create a successful fashion house, The House of Worth in Paris. For the latter half of the nineteenth century, Charles Frederick Worth was not the only designer to have unique trims, fabrics, and combined historical elements into his designs. It was during this period that many houses employed many artists, like now called pattern makers creating patterns for garments. Patterns would be shown to the clients, then the client would then place the orders. The traditional way during this period was to let the customers see the patterns of the garment and then start stitching. Instead, the patterns are never shown to the customer only the finished results.

Fancy dress costume ca. 1870 House of Worth French
Fancy dress costume ca. 1870 House of Worth French

Charles had earned his titles as the “First Courier” and “Father of Haute Couture.” Gaston-Lucien(1853-1924) and Jean-Philippe (1856-1926), Charles two sons, took over The House of Worth upon his death in 1895. They made sure to achieve the high standard as their father once did. The business continued to flourish up until the 1920s but ended in 1952 when Charles great-grandson, Jean-Charles (1881-1962) retired the family business. Ending the greatest family dynasty The House of Worth, If you want to know more about The House of Worth (link Here).

To identify the difference between fashion then Vs. now, we first have to identify the meaning: which is a form of a trend, a style of dress, not just in clothing but in accessories, hair, or makeup. For many, fashion is the highest on the list of priorities. Keeping up with fashion is important to some, but not all. If fashion is important to you, keeping up with the latest fashion and styles is mandatory in your career path and can be overwhelming; because fashion is constantly changing. 

20s Flapper Clothing Trend #1: La Garconne Dresses

In the early 1920s, the flapper style was considered the influential style of the 20s’. When you think of the flapper era you think dropped waisted dresses, feather shawls, beaded dresses, and accessories. Eventually moving into bias-cut dresses in the 1930s to mini skirts and bell-bottoms in the 1960s and 70s. Periods continuing would have subtle, and constant change. These subtle changes would continue into the 80s-90s, to more minimalist fashion like leggings and the slip dress. Leading into the age of hip-hop and celebrities becoming the prime influencing in fashion. Going into the mid-20th-century fashion wear is now being massed produced, slow fashion is out, fast fashion is in. Customers now have more variety of garments to choose from.

Now people are choosing their clothes and creating their style instead of relying on the next trend. The changes in the 20th century are now about comfort. Comfort and practicality of clothing. Dressing casually in America is uncaring, relaxed, and unconcerned. Casual could be defined in the American culture as freedom, to choose and distinguish ourselves from others; no longer following the old rules of what style is defined as. Centuries ago, fashion defines your social class. What you wore separated who was rich and who was poor. That barrier of fashion separating social class is now the American middle class. The mass market is designed for the middle class, stores like Old Navy, the Gap, and T. J. Maxx, Etc., has everything you wear from your shirt to your shoes, is made accessible to everyone from celebrities to influencers.

As people’s views start to grow and change over time so does fashion, the old ways are replaced with the new. Due to influences such as hip-hop, celebrities, political leaders, tv shows, artists, books, and magazines. Influencers in the fashion industry are not repetitive, they’re always rushing for something new and fresh to remain popular. Therefore when people see something new in pop culture today, they imitate the latest hairstyle, clothes, shoes, and jewelry. This is what makes fashion forever growing and forever changing. Change in fashion goes back to when clothing was invented, as far back as the 1700s in France, constantly looking for the latest styles in fashion. Learning all this, if you think about it, look in your closet right now and look at the clothing you have in there. Why did you buy it? Was it the latest fashion from way back then? Who designed it? What made you chose this garment in particular?

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