Friday, January 30, 2015

Feature Friday: Blue Jean Baby

Have you ever wondered where the word "jeans" came from? Or when the first pair was worn?

Today's Feature Friday is about just that - a fashion staple for everyone around the world.

The word ‘jeans’ comes from the French phrase ‘bleu de Genes’ meaning ‘the blue of Genoa’. The denim fabric originated in the French town of Nimes and owes its name to the location, which was quickly known as ‘denim’ abroad.

Genoese Navy sailors were the first people to wear denim in the 1500’s. However. it wasn’t until the 1870’s in the gold rush boom that denim took off. 

Levi Strauss, a now well-known brand in the denim industry, created a strong style of workers pants with rivets that was quickly adopted by Californian coal miners. 

Their jeans were originally made from hemp which was proven to be uncomfortable for the workers. Levi's eventually discovered and started using the twilled cotton cloth that originated from Nimes and denim, as we know it, was born.

It became popular in culture when jeans became symbolic of protest against conformity. Worn by teenagers and young adults, they were often refused admission to movies, restaurants and other places that hadn't accepted this new trend. 

However, the disapproval didn't last and by the 1960’s blue jeans became more acceptable to wear. They were an established trend by the 1970’s.

From there, "designer" jeans became available and it eventually made its way into fashion shows. 

Denim had a rough start in culture, but once it was finally accepted, it was officially here to stay!


Friday, January 16, 2015

Feature Friday: Polka Dot Madness

Though the word "polka dot" was created in the mid 1800's, it is believed that the print became popular around 1926, when Miss America was photographed in a polka dot swimsuit and men began wearing polka-dotted bow ties. Soon after, Disney introduced Minnie Mouse wearing a red polka dot dress and matching bow.

By the 1930's, polka dots were seen on many garments in stores with bows and ribbons. And by 1940, it even made it's way into a song by Frank Sinatra called, "Polka Dots and Moon Beams" because of it's rising popularity.

The Los Angeles Times was quoted as saying, "You can sign your fashion life away on the polka-dotted line and you'll never regret it."

The craze continued on into the 1950's with Marilyn Monroe sporting a polka dot bikini as well as the famous Brian Hyland song, "Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini." It seems like from day one, polka dots had fame on it's side...

So where did the words, "polka" and "dot" come from?

In the mid-19th century, Polka dots had many other names, such as "Dotted Swiss," which referred to raised dots an transparent tulle. During the this time, a dance called "Polka" was also becoming a craze and somehow, the two got linked. However, the only thing they share in common is the time they became popular.

The word "polka" itself means "little woman or girl" which could be a reason "polka" came into play since polka dots were seen as widely feminine. However, as the print continued to gain popularity, men wore it more as well. Even comic books, like Marvel's 1962 "Polka Dot Man" were sporting the print.

"Dot" on the other hand, is derived from the Old English word, "dott," meaning "speck."

The first magazine to print the term was Godey's Lady's Book in an 1857 description of a garment. “A scarf of muslin, for light summer wear, surrounded by a scalloped edge, embroidered in rows of round polka dots.”

Do you wear polka dots?


Friday, January 9, 2015

Feature Friday: 25 Timeless Style Lessons from Audrey Hepburn

Audrey Hepburn has been a style icon to many women. She represented simplicity but with a touch of elegance. Here at the studio we consider her one as well so after I coincidentally ran across an article about her online, I thought it would be perfect to share here.

Here are the 25 timeless style lessons she left us....

1. Sometimes a simple dress is all you need.

2. Gloves add a touch of sophistication to any outfit.

3. Always accessorize and protect your face with a stylish hat. 

4. Striped shirts and cropped haircuts can still look super feminine.

5. Wearing a cozy nightgown and is completely acceptable.

6. A belt cinched in the middle of a dress creates a lovely shape. 

7. You can wear a crown, even if you're not royalty. Audrey knew that every woman should be treated like a princess.

8. Don't be a afraid to rock the bow tie and a suit.

9. Collared shirts never got out of style. 

10. Your bangs don't always have to be word straight across your forehead. 

11. You can never go wrong with a bold red lip. 

12. Simple color blocking creates a classic look. 

13. Take off your heels to play sports, but still look cute in that summer dress.

14. Fun, bold prints are always a go.

15. Women can wear loafers just as well as men.

16. Sunglasses literally work with any outfit - including formal ones. 

17. Take a fashion risk, and wear that unique item. 

18. Find a classic and practical bag. 

19. In order to stand out, opt for a different take on your wedding dress.

20. Skip the bikini and wear a bright one-piece bathing suit. 

21. Expertly placed dark eyeliner can soften up a short haircut. 

22. Babydoll dresses still look great as you mature. Just make sure you don't pick a dress that's too juvenile-looking, but rather one that is tastefully youthful.
23. Long lashes look ravishing on older women. 

24. Your senior years are the perfect time to break out the intricate jewelry. While it can sometimes look a little overdone on younger women, flashy earrings and necklaces add spark to a sophisticated lady's ensemble.

25. The most important lesson: Wear clothes you can be yourself in.