The history of fashion

In layman’s language, fashion designing can be defined as the art of making fashionable clothing. However, as time goes by, the notion of fashion designing has evolved to include even fashion accessories, including footwear, jewellery and bags, among others. With this evolution of the concept of fashion designing,  it would not be sufficient to, define it as just as the creation of fashion. Looking back, one can understand how far fashion design has come since the mere designing of clothing. Today fashion designing has become an industry that is fully-fledged and is a globally revered career option. In this article, the evolution of Fashion designing over time has been discussed.

It is believed that fashion designing originated in Paris at around 1826, with the initial fashion designer believed to be Charles Fredrick. Charles had a fashion house in Paris and is said to have initiated the practice of fashion houses informing their clients the clothes types that would best suit them. In this period, numerous design houses started to hire artists to come up with clothing patterns. Clients would then be shown the patterns and would place an order based on the pattern they liked.

The 1950s were characterised by a thriving economy and a high disposable income. This meant an increase in spending in the fashion industry, especially among the young. There was an emergence of brands such as Spencer and Marks in the ready to wear mass market. Movies also played a significant part in the popularisation of fashion as was seen in 1955 in the movie Rebel Without a Cause where James Dean, an American movie star popularised blue jeans. He wore a combination of leather jackets, T-shirt and Jean popularising then. Men’s fashion saw a significant change in the 1950s when Italian tailored clothing were introduced with tapered pants, single-breasted suits, pointed shoes and narrow ties. There were film stars such as Marilyn Monroe, Grace Kelley, Sophia Loren and Marlon Brando who influenced fashion based on their garments.

In early the 20th century, the fashion industry started to experience new developments. This new ways commenced in Paris and slowly spread to the entire world. Paris arose as a fashion capital as new garment designs were born in Paris before spreading to other parts of the world. The main fashion in this period was the haute couture. Mass production of fashion clothes started as the mid-20th century approached. With this increase in the bulk of production, more garment choices were available. As the end of the 20th century approached, people became increasingly aware of fashion and started to choose clothes based on the style they preferred and based on comfort, instead of just depending on the prevalent trends in the market. Today fashion designing has greatly evolved and is a carer option that is well accepted throughout the world. Colleges and universities are offering courses in various branches of fashion. Students have also over the years increasingly chosen it as their preferred career option.

Specialisation in fashion design has increased. Fashion designers can choose from various options, including swimwear, bridal wear, lingerie, women’s wear, man’s wear, children’s wear, handbags, and footwear. While fashion designers previously preferred to be self-employed, today they can find multiple career opportunities such as working for export houses and garment firms. Other opportunities include remodelling haute couture and adjusting them to suit the mass market needs and taste. Speciality stores and departmental stores also offer jobs to fashion designers. This growth and expansion in the fashion designing field have led to the rise of other associated career paths, including fashion journalists, fashion photographers, fashion advisors, makeup artists, and hairstylists.

As technology becomes widespread, the fashion design industry has seen an increased application of computer and technology. Several software packages which help designers during the designing process and other garment production stages have been developed, making the process easy and prompt.

Fashion designing has also grown as a trade. Increasingly fashion designers are not only getting status in their countries but also worldwide. There has been a significant increase in the number of fashion shows we see on our screens recently. Therefore fashion designing today is not only about creating and designing garments, but it also entails creativity, design, technology, fashion and business.

In conclusion, by looking at the history of fashion, one can realise that there have been periodic changes in the prevailing fashion trends. Paris can be said to be the birthplace of fashion before it spread to other parts of the world. In the 50s films influenced fashion greatly. Today multiple online fashion stores have emerged. However, it is essential that when shopping from this online fashion stores, you select reputable stores. Reading fashion brands reviews and zaful reviews will help you select the most reliable online store to shop your fashion.

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