Guest Post - Popular Fashion Trends around the Globe
In the first decades of the twentieth century, fashion designers started seeking inspiration in different cultures, experimenting with elements of ethnic styles. At first seen as exotic, with the rise of globalization, these pieces entered the mainstream. A hundred years ago, you could hardly see a keffiyeh outside the Middle East, except on a rare adventurer. Nowadays, people wear them in the streets of New York, Tokyo, or Moscow. The circulation of trends from all corners of the world is such that folk costumes are no longer identified with a certain nation, but are rather considered multicultural designs.
1. Japan – Kimono
The word ‘kimono’ literally translates as ‘thing to wear’. However, today it is used to distinguish traditional Japanese clothing from the Western clothing. Once they were made exclusively from expensive fabrics, like silk. Now, they come in polyester and rayon as well, and are much more affordable. An interesting fact about the kimono is that the combination of colors and patterns indicates the political class of the wearer or the season of the year. While Japanese people rarely wear kimonos in everyday life these days, except on special occasions like weddings, or official ceremonies, its global popularity is on the rise.
2. India – Saree
Indian saree is a draped dress made from a single length of fabric five to nine yards long. This infinitely adaptable garment can be wrapped around a woman's body in as many different ways as you can think of. The variety of colors, fabrics, patterns and draping styles, and its simplicity at the same time, make the Indian saree so fascinating. It is worn with an underskirt and a tight-fitted top (choli). As opposed to the kimono in Japan, Indian sarees can be seen in the streets all across India as well as on the catwalk during the Indian Fashion Week.
3. France – Beret
A stereotypical emblem of the French, this round woolen cap is said to have a history dating back to 5th century BC. It was long associated with artists, such as Pablo Picasso, poets, and revolutionaries who wore it as a statement symbol. In fact, it became an integral part of military uniforms across the globe. The appeal of the beret seems to be as strong today. Wear it pushed to one side, or atop your head, or pulled down over your forehead, it doesn’t matter. It is not about the style, it is about the attitude.
4. Spain – Espadrilles
Spanish traditional ‘alpargatas’ are flat unisex shoes made with flexible soles of woven rope. The body of the shoe is usually made of one piece of canvas which is seamed to the sole. Today, they also come with rubber soles, high heels, or laces wrapped around the ankles. They are equally popular among men and women, especially during the summer months.
5. Chile – Poncho
Ponchos may not be very elegant, but they are amazingly cozy. If you are looking for the boho-chic style, look no further than poncho. The poncho worn in Chile is called chamanto, and it is different from a classic poncho in that it is reversible – it is light on one side, and dark on the other. You usually wear the light side during the day, and the dark side at night. Traditionally, they are made of silk. However, they’ve seen some modifications lately, and now you can even find polyethylene waterproof ponchos.
One great thing about globalization is that it introduced us to all these amazing pieces.
Can you think of some other international fashion trends that you love?
About the Author
Amy Mia Goldsmith is an Australian literature student who loves to read and has been writing since she was little. Her passion is beauty and makeup and she loves to spend her free time travelling and of course….makeup shopping! Amy is a regular contributor at High Style Life. You can contact Amy on her Facebook page.