Fashion throughout history: wearing clothes “incorrectly”

“Handmade White Chaperon” image from an article by Vicky Binns on the Modern Medievalist blog:

It can be all too easy to look at people who wear their clothes incorrectly, to make a disapproving face, and say something like: “kids these days… Back in my day, we wore our trousers properly.” While I don’t mind people wearing their baseball caps in whatever direction (the brim does help to keep the sun from burning skin), some other fashions do annoy me a little.

However, looking back in history, there are examples of people wearing clothes “incorrectly”, and apparently they must have done so often enough to create new fashions. This article will look briefly at a few of these examples.

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It’s always been about fashion! Decorative textiles through the ages.

Uses of Decorative Textiles

From the earliest days clothing and other forms of textiles have been decorated to show skill, affluence and, in some cases rank. Finds involving both textiles and decorative work related to them, have also been useful for reopening historical debate. The finding of beads amongst other artefacts has revised debates of regions involved in the early Indo-Roman trade and has suggested that Dibba may be an alternative site for Omana. Increase in ability in the production of these articles and in the variety of techniques also shows alongside growth of trade, industry and economy, marked technological developments. Documentation of these skills can also be useful in determining the occupation of different genders and classes in different places in different times in history. This work aims to provide examples of the importance of textiles and decorative beadwork to history regardless of period.
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