FASHION IN THE U.K.
Fashion and history are entwined in British culture. London is one of the major fashion capitals of the world with streets packed with shops. It is famous for starting trends and bringing some of the world’s best designers into the limelight.
The British Royal family has been a constant source of fashion inspiration, from women wearing corsets to try to copy the slim silhouette of Elizabeth I to modern women taking inspiration from Kate Middleton’s simple, elegant outfits.
Trends set by the royals become the norm. Queen Victoria helped popularize the practice of wearing black when in mourning and the tradition is still widespread because of this.
The outbreak of World War II influenced clothing, as it was now acceptable for women to wear trousers due to rationing of fabrics, and as they took on more masculine jobs. After the war, women in the 50s began to enjoy more stylish clothing as the country gained prosperity.
The 60s fashion influenced the whole world. Mary Quant’s invention of the mini skirt in particular became an inspiration. Home designs were also influenced in this era.
The 70s saw the rise of punk and British designers e.g. Vivienne Westwood. The 80s were an era of decadence where hair was big and shoulder pads bigger. It included lots of bright colors.
Today, London Fashion Week is held twice a year in February and September. It is crammed with shows from some of the biggest fashion houses. The Graduate Fashion Week showcases work of over 1000 fashion graduates and offers chance to be scouted by big labels.
London has proved to have talent and determination to be part and parcel of the next fashion trend.