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Emily 24th February 2006 02:34

Luxurious lace (article)
I'm surprised that the plus-size industry hasn't yet caught on to this exciting new development in the New Femininity -- the popularity of antique-looking lace styles. It's definitely making an impact on mainstream fashion, and is even helping to revive an appreciation for curves.

Look at the text of this recent fashion article:

The writers states:

"Shove that little black dress to the back of the closet, because this year is all about white. This...ivory lace dress embodies what this spring is all about. It captures the femininity that will soon be bigger than it has been in years...It has the feel of the 40's and 50's with the natural waistline, soft lines, and antique lace, tied together with a droopy satin bow."

There used to be a picture with the article, but it's gone now -- but her text gets the point across. And the idea that these lace styles are curve-flattering is definitely on the writer's mind. She notes:

"We are approaching a new era in fashion--one that embraces the woman for what she really is, curves and all. It represents a woman who excels...while retaining her feminine attributes. Women no longer need to wear masculine suiting to hide her figure..."

and she concludes with this great statement:

"This new era glorifies, lace, natural waistlines, round toe pumps, chiffon, taffeta, bows, satin, and large costume jewelry. So get in touch with your femininity and enjoy being a girl."

Applause! I found a couple of lace dresses at Nordstrom in the undersize section, but they would look so much better on plus-size models. On straight-size frames, they just look flat and empty.

I hope we see more lace styles in plus soon. This is an especially pro-curvy trend.

HSG 24th February 2006 11:48

''A new era in fashion''

What is particularly encouraging about Emily's article is that the author identifies the new appreciation of "lace . . .chiffon, taffeta, bows, satin, and large costume jewelry" as a definable "new era in fashion." And that, it certainly is. It enables a goddess to introduce a touch of romance and fantasy into the prosaic modern world. It allows her to say, yes, she may live in 2006--but in another time, she could have been a princess, whom gallant suitors would have courted; or a muse, who might have inspired the creation of the greatest works of art.

Such styles offer more opportunities for creative expression than do boring basics, or androgynous suits. And no matter how popular this trend becomes, each individual piece will still be far more unique, and will better exemplify the personality of the particular wearer, than if, say, the trend were for uniform shirts, or for trenchcoats.

And as with every development in fashion's "New Femininity," these lace styles are tailor-made to accentuate the beauty of a curvaceous figure, and far better adorn a voluptuous shape than they do an underweight frame. And no wonder--since they represent a revival of styles that were developed when the generously-proportioned female figure was the unquestioned ideal of beauty.

Thus far, images of lace dresses featured on plus-size models have been hard to come by, but hopefully, this will change in the near future. In the meantime, here is a lovely image of Maiysha in a lace top, from a current Lane Bryant ad. And the gallery linked below includes some images of Barbarba Brickner showing off lace tops, from the Spring 2006 Nordstrom collection.

Hopefully, this trend represents something far more significant than even a "new era in fashion." It may herald a new era--period. A richer era. A more creative era. A more inspired era. A more Romantic era.

And after a century of modernist minimalism, and the "aesthetics of guilt," its arrival is extremely welcome . . .

- New Barbara Brickner gallery

M. Lopez 26th February 2006 04:21

Re: Luxurious lace (article)
I don't have any lace styles to add, but on the point about the growing apprecation of femininity, I came across another article that talked about its importance this spring:

It states that:

"-- Whether it's in the form of ruffles, lace, chiffon or floral prints, femininity is key this spring.

-- The most popular fashion accents for spring include feminine touches such as embroidery and beading."

But what I also found interesting were the results that it noted in a new customer survey:

"According to a recent survey conducted by Kohl's Department Store, 76 percent of women cited that adding new spring fashions to their wardrobe helps to reenergize and uplift their spirits.

Buying a trendy new clothing item also ranks high on the endorphin scale.

Similar to eating chocolate or getting a great haircut, women associate positive and energizing attitudes with shopping for trendy clothing."

It may sound like special pleading by retailers, but I believe there's a lot of truth in that. And it repeats a point that has been made on this forum before: that this represents the "good side" of capitalism. These activities allow a woman to enrich her life a little. And the comparison with eating chocolate underscores how preferable it is for her to spend her resources on these activities, which make her feel good about herself, rather than on diet-starvation and exercise-torture, which diminish her quality of life, and make her feel bad about herself. Spending a fun day shopping and eating chocolate (and maybe taking in a museum) is infinitely more enjoyable that spending the day starving, or locked in a gym prison.

Speaking of Kohl's I think that company deserves credit for its advertising too. They've featured Barbara Brickner in several recent flyers. Here's an image that I thought was especially pretty:

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