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There have been so many clever, insightful things said about dress…

Here are just a few…

“Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence in society.”
~ Mark Twain, quoted in More Maxims of Mark, Johnson, 1927

“It is an interesting question how far men would retain their relative rank if they were divested of their clothes.”
~Henry David Thoreau

“The whole art of living is mirrored in fashion..”
~ Cecil Beaton

“Each age seeks its own image, the mirror of that image being the mirror of truth.”
~ Christian Dior

cheers,

Bella

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It’s Terminology Tuesday again and this week in the spotlight is…

the Annette Kellerman swimsuit…

You might have heard of her? Hopefully you have. I definitely had but was still amazed to learn of the extent of the influence she had on the lives we now live.

Pictorial post card, Miss Annette Kellermann, Champion Lady Swimmer and Diver of the World

Pictorial post card, Miss Annette Kellermann, Champion Lady Swimmer and Diver of the World. State Library of N.S.W. photo source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/statelibraryofnsw/6940033817/

Annette Kellerman (originally Kellermann), (1887 – 1975) was an Australian athlete, vaudeville and movie star and successful entrpreneur. In fact she was one of the most famous women of her time. Suffering from Rickets as a child, a condition which often results in weakened and deformed legs, Kellerman took to the water upon medical advice once her steel braces were removed. She learned to swim despite her initial fears and contrary to social norms of the time. In the Victorian era, European and American societies did not generally partake in swimming for pleasure. Most women were unable to swim and even if they were inclined were expected to wear heavy cumbersome clothing and not actually swim, just wade. However in Australia, women had adopted men’s swimming attire although strictly only for competitive swimming.

Holiday bathing dresses

Holiday bathing dresses. photo source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/27413256@N06/4546707945/

The Weir, Nepean at Penrith by Arthur Judges (c.1910)

The Weir, Nepean at Penrith by Arthur Judges (c.1910). photo source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/pellethepoet/10340153424/

 

 

 

 

 

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It’s Terminology Tuesday again and this week in the spotlight is…

the Sauna Suit

Don’t you just love the innovations we meagre human being’s come up with? Anything to lose a kilo or two with the minimum of effort. Such a lazy bunch.

Trim-Ez Hot Pants Sauna Suit

Trim-Ez Hot Pants Sauna Suit, from American Hairdresser July 1972 photo source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/incurlers/4513159850/

“sauna suit: an exercise suit made of soft flexible vinyl in either a jumpsuit or two piece style with a zip front and knitted cuffs at wrists and ankles. Intended to be worn around the house, it seals in body heat, acting like a steam bath and encouraging weight loss. An innovation of the late 1960’s. Also called an exercise suit. “

WARNING: I STRONGLY ADVISE AGAINST GOOGLING THIS TERM. THE MAJORITY OF WHAT I FOUND WAS TASTELESS, BORDERING ON ….. LET’S NOT GO THERE! It was icky let us say. Yuech!

Clearly however these products are still selling. Not just for the 70’s little lady as you might have thought.

Fancy one of these?

Sauna Suit

Sauna Suit. Image source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/helloviking/4586972224/

Or one for relaxing whilst in the bath. Something wrong there surely.

Home Bath Sauna Suit - Don Quijote, Roppongi

Home Bath Sauna Suit image source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/avlxyz/163514771/

This lady almost makes it look like a reasonable proposition!

Swelter Female Sweat Suit

Swelter Female Sweat Suit image source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/swelterwear/7002998667/

I think I’ll stick to “Pump” and a few extra kilo’s.

Happy Tuesday,

Bella

To read more Terminology Tuesday posts click on the Culture tag in the “Let’s Talk” cloud top right of the home page.

OR click here to read my previous post.

* Bibliography: The Fairchild Books Dictionary of Fashion 4th Edition by Phyllis G.   and Sandra J. Keiser

 

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It’s Terminology Tuesday again and this week in the spotlight is…

 Amazon…

Amazon Woman on Horse Back During Tiger Attack Statue 7366

Amazon Woman on Horse Back During Tiger Attack Statue by Auguste Karl Edouard Kiss later translated into a much larger statute for the Altes Museum in Berlin. Image source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/93779577@N00/4791045273/

In fashion terms;

Amazon adj. attached to the names of certain items of women’s fashionable apparel as a descriptor.

The Amazons were a legendary (potentially mythical) race of warlike women from the time and region of the ancient Greeks.  Scholars have many theories as to whom these people may have truly been and if the associated legends have any merit. Emotive laden myths abound, in particular their supposed custom of routinely amputating a breast in order to improve their control with a bow and arrow.

Wonder woman, an Amazonian cartoon super hero of the 1940’s, was created by psychologist and comic book writer William Moulton Marston . In 1943 he said of his character:

“Wonder Woman is psychological propaganda for the new type of woman who should, I believe, rule the world,”

 

“Not even girls want to be girls so long as our feminine archetype lacks force, strength and power. Not wanting to be girls, they don’t want to be tender, submissive, peace-loving as good women are.”

From “The Amazon Women, Is there any truth behind the Myth”. The Smithsonian Mag. Find it here. I really enjoyed it, you might also.

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It’s Terminology Tuesday again and this week in the spotlight is…

Aesthetic Dress

 

Pardon? I hear you say….  Is not all dress aesthetic? Dependant upon the eye of the beholder?  So we have found a truly curious fashion term.

“aesthetic: adj. 1. of aesthetics

2. sensitive to art and beauty;artistic

aesthetics: n.pl the study or theory of beauty; specifically, the branch of philosophy dealing with art and its forms, effects etc.”

as defined by the  Collins Australian Pocket English Dictionary

Despite the addition of an “s”  the name Aesthetic dress was derived from the idea of a philosophical approach to dress.  A philosophy of comfort, health and naturalness in a time of heavily restrictive clothing practices, the late 19th century Victorian era.

Typical fashions of the era featured boning and corsetry around the torso and collars enforcing a very rigid posture and limited movement.

Dinner, Evening, Walking, Carriage, Visiting & 5-Year-Old Dress, February 1880

Godey’s Fashions for February 1880 photo source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/93200061@N03/8481201824/

Bride's, House, Dinner, Evening & Walking Dresses, January 1880

Godey’s fashions for January 1880 photo source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/93200061@N03/8480074809/

“Aesthetic dress is a term used to describe a mode of dressing for men and women that was adopted by a small community of artistic people in England in the 19th c who sought reform in the arts and dress. The clothing was loosely based upon historic costume of the Middle Ages in particular the removal of corsetry, softer more fluid lines than the eras bustle dresses and large sleeves. Prominant writer of the time, Oscar Wilde, a proponent of this movement, wore a velvet suit with knee breeches, a loosely fitted jacket, a soft wide collar and flowing tie. His costume was said to serve as the inspiration for the Little Lord Fauntleroy suit. The Gilbert and Sullivan operetta Patience satirized these aesthetic styles, calling them “greenery yallery, Grosvenor gallery” costumes”

as defined by The Fairchild Books Dictionary of Fashion 4th Edition by Phyllis G. and Sandra J. Keiser

This definition doesn’t mention it but these same artists and proponents of the Aesthetic dress movement were also involved in the Arts and Crafts movement. For more info go to my Bohemian blog post here.

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