Weird History: 5 Wacky Trends In Fashion History That Will Leave You Speechless

Weird History: 5 Wacky Trends In Fashion History That Will Leave You Speechless

We’ve all seen older generations that are shocked when told that these pants are intentionally shredded and tattered. 

Fashion trends have been condemned throughout history, whether it is the length of flapper dresses, the height of stilettos, or the high and frizzy hair of the 1980s, yet they are trends because of the following they garner, however brief. 

Fashion is a long-lasting tradition, yet fads are often fleeting. What was fantastic five years ago may seem bizarre to us today, and this is amplified as we look further back in history. Here, we’ll look at eight fashion trends that have gone down in history.

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1. Crinolines

CrinolinesRare Historical Photos

The crinoline, often known as the hoop skirt, was a type of petticoat that was popular among the wealthy in the nineteenth century. Victorian women were obsessed with having a tiny waist, and one method was to make a skirt look like an inflated balloon. 

Crinolines emerged from older fashion styles, such as the Spanish verdugada, or farthingale, and the French panniers, or side hoops, which were popular during the 18th century. 

The farthingale increased the diameter of the skirt around the wearer’s waist, causing the skirt to fall straight down around the farthingale framework. Panniers were similar to crinolines in structure, but they only made the skirt larger at the sides while keeping the front and back flat.

2. Arsenic Dye

Victorian England also saw a rise in the popularity of brilliantly coloured fabrics, particularly one produced in Germany in 1814 that turned the fabric a striking “emerald green.” 

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It made the wearer stand out like a diamond in a crowd. The only disadvantage of the colour was its composition, which blended arsenic trioxide, or “white arsenic,” with copper to produce such a vibrant colour. It was inexpensive and plentiful, but the consequences for the wearer and the manufacturer were irreversible.

3. Chopines 

fashion trends from history

The original platform shoe, the Chopine, was worn by women in Venice to keep their skirts clean by avoiding treading in mud. However, the shoes quickly became a prestige symbol. 

The higher the shoe, the higher the social level of the woman.

Chopines were manufactured by stitching delicate slippers made of velvet or silk onto blocks of wood or cork and were worn during the 15th, 16th, and 17th centuries. 

The majority of the cork supply in 15th-century Spain was used to make the shoes of wealthy noblewomen. Many Chopines practiced walking and could walk pretty well, towering above their contemporaries, figuratively and literally looking down on them.

4. Blackened Teeth

Queen Elizabeth IHistoric UK

Queen Elizabeth I, who had a notoriously sweet tooth and a dread of dentists, popularised blackened teeth during the Tudor period. Sugar imported from British Caribbean colonies exacerbated Queen Elizabeth’s sweet tooth. Sugary meals on one’s table, along with poor oral hygiene, were considered a sign of affluence. 

Common people in Tudor England stained their teeth black to look affluent and copy the aristocratic, aiming to appear as though they could buy sugar like the Queen. The nobility ruined their teeth with abandon, preferring to demonstrate their social standing by their capacity to acquire sugar rather than keeping white and healthy teeth. 

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5. Living Jewellery

fashion trends from history

In the 1890s, there was a fashion craze in America that combined pet ownership with animal-inspired jewelry. Women were sold live lizards as chameleons that changed colour with their attire, providing a matching gem for every piece of clothing. Women jumped on the idea, putting the tiny creatures in tiny collars tied to tiny chains that would hold them to a brooch, a scarf, or even the wearer’s hair. 

While animal-inspired and filled-in jewellery was not a new idea, it had its origins in the Roman and Mayan civilizations. By the latter half of the twentieth century, the practice had mostly died out in the mainstream. Living ornaments were exchanged for more benign insects, such as the butterfly clips that were popular in the 1990s. 

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