You can’t get better than a tailored look. And you can’t get any better than men’s clothing! Let me explain, ever since the days of Annie Hall (Hit film with Woody Allen and Dianne Keaton) we have had OBSESSIONS with the oversized shirt and waistcoat for a long time and now it’s the go to out fit for women at work.
But where did the style originate?
THE HISTORY BIT
Back in the 1800’s women were restricted to their corsets and kitchens, but some women decided to break that tradition and go into the theatre! Now to be an actress in those day you were considered more morally corrupt than a prostitute.
Vesta Tilley was one of these women, not only did she perform on the stage she did it in menswear! Tailored in top hats and tails she mimicked the fashions of the so-called ‘Fops’ and poked fun at their snooty ways. She even paved the way for men’s fashions too creating little changes to her costumes which caught on with the gentlemen.
Her styles followed through to the 1900’s where women in trousers was a common sight in the big cities! The first was a wide thigh style called the Knickerbocker which was mainly a bicycle trouser, still in corsets and restricting but a bold move for the 1900’s!
but this was quickly followed by a palazzo style pant in the 20’s-40’s, a time after the war and the beginning of a second. Women really stepped up taking on the mens work, really proving they where as capable as them despite what society suggested. I believe trousers where just more practical, but it really gave women more choice and more of a powerful stance! Comparing how women held themselves, look at the picture up top and the two below. You can tell just from their body language they are more confident and strong. And Katherine Hepburn? She is the queen of powerful women!
All in all we women have shown men we wear the trousers too, not just when it comes to clothing but when it comes to getting the job done. There are still struggles on the way, narrow-mindedness and general misogyny but little by little we are getting there.
This is why I cut to the 70’s and 80’s. Women finally have a foot in the door, jobs and family is possible, Tom Hanks and Daryl Hannah have an wonderfully watery adventure do you remember that? Remember that suit she borrowed, that is the style that has come back recently ala Vesta Tilley!
Check out these inspirations! Kate Moss and Dianne Keaton in the infamous ‘Annie Hall’ in these chic style borrowed from the boys.
Karen Gillan kills it in this number from her independant film ‘Not Another Happy Ending’