Glossary of Fashion Terms: Part 2
Our Fashion Glossary Part One was very well received (thank you all for that), and one would think it’s an easy task to do a follow up act and to round up that exquisite list. But I kid you not; it’s been tougher than ever. Any fashion writer worth their Prada will tell you that to be in step with the times, you cannot afford to be half informed. So here we are, with Round Two of must know fashion terms, hoping we have covered the essentials and wishing you only the most glamorous times ahead.
Plain and simple, Houndstooth refers to the kind of checks that are all the rage right now. The classic Houndstooth checks are black and white but they are also found in other colours. Houndstooth checks originated in woven wool cloth of the Scottish Lowlands, but are now used in many other materials (Thank God for that). These checks look trés classy and can be seen on dresses, skirts, pants and shoes. If you haven’t put your paws on this look yet, hurry and go fetch!
This one is a personal favourite for I am a proud owner of many pairs of Palazzo pants. These pants are basically long women’s trousers cut with a loose, extremely wide leg that flares out from the waist. Not to be confused with bell bottoms which are snug until they flare out from the knee, Palazzo pants flare out evenly from the waist to the ankle. These pants were HUGE in the 1960s and 70s and thankfully, much like history, fashion repeats itself. This oh-so-retro trend will put you right on top of the fashion rung while putting your comfort first. Try them in solids or prints and experiment with materials to try different day and night looks with palazzos.
To understand Baroque is to understand a whole era in history. It doesn’t refer to fashion alone but to art, theatre, music and architecture. With ornate details and gilded edges, the drama of the baroque period has fancifully captured the minds of designers in recent times. Think textured fabrics, think ornate patterns, think velvet, think gold and think drama and you shall embody everything that Baroque stands for. We as Indians, have a penchant for larger than life so this trend should fit right in with us.
A minaudière (pronunciation: \ˌmē-nōd-ˈyer\) is a women’s fashion accessory, generally considered a jewellery piece, intended to substitute for an evening bag. A case with compartments, it allows storage for several items in a small space, such as a makeup compact, lipstick, watch, reading glasses, or keys. God knows we women need to carry the world around in as small a place as possible, so we might as well make a statement out of it. I’m sure we all have seen or even used a minaudière without knowing the correct word for it. It’s usually a metallic hard clutch which is embellished and fits in your hand. Make sure you own at least one minaudière, for it’s a must have to top off any classy look.
My list just could not have been complete without this word. It is the most used abused and overused word in fashion all over the world. Avant-garde (ä-ˌvän(t)-ˈgärd), of French origin (are you even surprised?) literally means “advance guard” and refers to people or works that are experimental or innovative, particularly with respect to art and culture. So a designer, who considers himself ahead of the pack, usually refers to himself as Avante Garde. And while you may be every bit the fashionista, don’t let anyone fool you with words like that. They only mean that the designer is trying something new on you, and if you are not comfortable with being a fashion experiment, you must promptly reply saying you are looking at something contemporary but not too Avante Garde.
You know how it is with rules; you must know them to break them, one fashion forward foot at a time. Let us know if this glossary helped. Have words to add or points to argue? We are all ears. After all, fashion is a sorority and we sisters have to stick together.