Monday, 17 June 2013

The Flapper Dress: How To Wear It

By Sisi Tsoi

For any fanatic of vintage outfits, the Flapper Dress is amongst the most respected and preferred styles. Originating in the roaring 20s Jazz Age as a style the ladies could party all over the city in, they conjure up luxurious concepts of grand excess in a time of invention and artistic development. It also helps that they're incredibly stunning.

The allure of the Flapper is the undeniable volume of detail they display. Decorated with sequins, tassels and feathers, they reflected the brash, outgoing qualities of the new woman. With their sleek bobs, energetic lipstick and comical communication, the Flapper Girls ushered in an age of relative self-reliance and rebellion on the part of the fairer sex. No longer confined to the background, these women evolved into the life and soul of the party, dancing and drinking the night away. Who wouldn't aspire to reference such an enjoyable attitude? Even today the Flapper dress is a symbol of joyful partying, of being different and at ease with yourself.

For these reasons, the Flapper style has encountered something of a revival in recent years. Various versions of the flapper dress have made an appearance sporadically on the high street and the catwalk, and TV dramas such as Boardwalk Empire have created a whole new generation to the Golden Age. The extended awaited release of The Great Gatsby movie in 2013 has also offered ample inspiration, with Miuccia Prada working with the film's costume department to bring archived Prada dresses into the wardrobe of Daisy Buchanan, portrayed by the stunning Carey Mulligan. The practicality of the dress cut, combined with the opulence of the embellishments mean that it is a style that brings together ease and comfort with charming aesthetics.

The flapper dress is best suited for a less curvy figure, similar to the 60s shift. The straight up and down cut suits an athletic frame most, although you are likely to find dresses that will work with any body in the high street stores now, as body conventions have certainly changed in 90 years! Keep this in mind, however, if you go for a vintage piece. Sizing will be a lot smaller and the construction of the garments will be less flexible, since manmade stretchy fibres were not available at the time of their design. It may be easier then, to opt for a contemporary product when dipping your toe into the flapper trend; find a piece you love easily, get used to the style, and then if you fall hard for the Flapper girl identity, you can go thrifting and eventually find your perfectly unique vintage outfit.

The majority of flapper dresses are sleeveless or have subtle cap sleeves that don't provide much more coverage. If you want to wear your flapper in the colder months you will therefore want to find a complementary bolero, perhaps in lace or sequined; alternatively you can make a contrast with a grungy biker jacket for a unique take on a classic style.

The the majority of flapper dresses are sleeveless or possess refined cap sleeves that don't produce a lot more coverage. If you wish to put on your flapper in the wintry months you are going to consequently want to find a complementary bolero, perhaps in lace or sequined; alternatively you can make a comparison with a grungy biker coat for a distinctive take on a vintage style. The 1920s was also a time when more women began to test out shoes. Naturally, they were a lot shorter than the majority of styles currently around. Good news, however; the block heel is coming back into fashion for autumn/winter 2012, with many stores stocking one or two inch heels to help you keep dancing until morning.

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