Fashion: The Art of Dress


The History of Fashion and Its Evolution

The history of fashion is very long and complex. It began with cavemen who decorated themselves to attract other people. The first real record of fashion is from Ancient Egypt at 3500 BC. The Egyptians wore simple tunics, robes, and cloaks that were made from linen or hemp (Ancient Egypt). They also wore wigs to keep their hair from getting dirty when working outside (Ancient Egypt). These clothes were usually colorless because the dyes available at the time were very toxic (Ancient Egypt). There really wasn’t much variety in clothing back then because it all depended on how wealthy you were. If you lived in poverty, your only option was plain white linen clothes (Ancient Egypt). On the other hand, rich Egyptians would wear colorful tunics made out of silk that they bought directly from China or India(Ancient Egypt). Although there wasn’t much change in dress over thousands years after this era, there was a significant change during the reign of Alexander the Great around 323 BC(Alexander’s Empire)(Alexander’s Empire 2)(Fashion Timeline 1).. Alexander had conquered most of Western Asia by this time so his clothing became popular throughout many parts of Europe during this period.(Fashion Timeline 1) Because he liked bright colors like purple and red as well as gold jewelry(Alexander’s Empire), his style influenced much European artwork for hundreds of years after his death. The expanding fashion industry also caused the clothing of most Europeans to become less plain and more colorful. People began decorating their tunics with gold or silver embroidery and gemstones. Tunics were also decorated with fur, feathers, pearls, beads, and anything else that could be sewn onto cloth.(Fashion Timeline 1)

The Renaissance: The Beginning of Modern Fashion

The Renaissance was a time period around 1400-1600 in which people became interested in science and art again after the Middle Ages (History of Fashion). Many artists during this period were inspired by Greek artwork (History of Fashion). They improved on its design by creating more realistic paintings(History of Fashion). Clothing also became a lot simpler during this time because many people saw it as a waste of money. For example, instead of wearing expensive robes made from silk like rich merchants used to wear(Fashion Timeline 2), they wore basic woolen clothing instead(Fashion Timeline 2). This helped create a style now known as “the classic look” that would later influence fashion even further (Fashion Timeline 2). The Renaissance was revolutionary not only because it improved on the ancient styles but also because it marked the beginning off modern fashion (History Of Fashion)(Fashion Timeline 3)(Brief History Of Clothing And Textiles 5).. It was during this era that new colors like blue emerged for clothes for the first time since ancient Egypt. Blue was considered a symbol of nobility, but it didn’t become widely used until the 1700s (Brief History of Clothing and Textiles 5). Fashion also began to change dramatically during this time as merchants from Japan and China brought back new styles from their travels overseas. For example, during the Ming Dynasty in China around 1400 AD, women wore pants instead of skirts. Men also wore loose-fitting tunics.(History Of Fashion)

Fashion During The Renaissance: How It Changed Clothing

The Renaissance was a time period that changed fashion forever by changing the way clothes were designed (Fashion Timeline 3). For example, some clothing became more decorated than others(Fashion Timeline 3). This helped create two main groups in society: people who wore plainer clothes and people who wore more decorative clothes(Fashion Timeline 3). The difference between these two groups can be seen in paintings from that era. People who wore plainer clothes are usually depicted wearing simple black or brown robes with white collars while those who wear more decorative clothes had fancy collars made out of brocade or lace as well as lots of embroidery on their robes.

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