Inspired by: Victorian Fashion

One of my favorite ways to unwind after a long day is to read historical fiction novels, specifically those set in Victorian Europe, which the second half of the 19th century.  I love how reading gives me the ability to slip into another world for a few hours.  I don’t think I would have actually been able to survive back then, because, well, I really love my Chi hair straightener and heated apartment.  BUT it’s amazing to imagine being an aristocratic woman during that time period: the grand balls, the waltzing, and, of course, the fashion!

Arguably, the most influential figure in Parisian fashion during the Victorian period was Charles Worth, known today by many as the Father of Haute couture.  Pieces from his label, House of Worth, were the most sought-after creations of fashion during the time.  Aristocratic ladies’ fashion during the late 1800s was all about impeccable tailoring and a perfect, meticulous fit.  Worth became so infamous that he was able to actually turn away customers and fit only the beautiful ladies whom he wished to dress.

Victorian Wedding Gown

Worth Tea Gown
Worth Tea Gown
Fashions of 1883

Fashions of 1883

It is hard not to be inspired by the beautiful fashion during this era.  Tragically, without a team of dedicated maids, it’s not quite possible to don a Worth-style creation today.  Here’s my take on how to make Victorian fashion wearable for spring and summer 2013!

Sheer_Lace_Trim_Maxi_Skirt_in_Natural_4__79160.1355955163.322.487

Though this maxi skirt from Akira is more reminiscent of a Victorian era petticoat, the elegant, ladylike work on the sheer bottom has a romantic, old-world feel.

Screen shot 2013-04-10 at 6.50.52 PM

Add a pop of color with this flower print corset from Topshop, reminiscent of a lovely English garden and much more comfortable than a corset from the 1800s.

25240_DM0013

Keep the look from becoming too girly by adding this chambray boyfriend shirt from Madewell.

il_570xN.446281383_p2te

Finish off with a statement cameo necklace to invoke Victorian vibes, like this one from Etsy shop GayaDesigns.

If you are interested in historical fiction, check out authors Lauren Willig, Deanna Raybourn, and Tasha Alexander, all of whom have series featuring strong, smart ladies who happen to fight crime and/or solve mysteries while looking fabulous along the way.

What time period would you choose to visit if you could?  Share in the comments!

Advertisements

Inspired by: Princess Jasmine

I’m almost positive that every olive-skinned girl born in the VHS-era says this, but I love Princess Jasmine.  Not only does she live in a palace, (which, granted, she tries to escape), but she has a pet tiger!  Cinderella?  Keep your glass slippers, girl.  Sleeping Beauty?  Drink a 5 Hour Energy, whatever.

When I was growing up, Jasmine was the only Disney Princess who looked a bit liked me.  I was sold from the minute I saw her sashaying across the palace courtyard in her harem pants (also known as the bottom half of a salvar kameez) and crop top (aka sari blouse).

The eyebrows, you guys!  Perfection.

Regardless of your preferred princess, it is undeniable that Jasmine has great style.  Here’s my take on a modern-day rendition of the Jaz’s outfit, with a few on-trend spring pieces that you can remix into your wardrobe.

A structured pleather skirt, like this one from Asos, is the basis of this look, which channels Jasmine’s signature blue.

2013-03-29_1503

Add a tiger tee, like this one from Mango, to keep the look young and casual while channeling Raja the tiger.

Add gold cuffs like these from Etsy shop PointNoPointStudio as an homage to the genie.

Jasmine would go barefoot, but I’d add gold cap-toed flats like these Jeffrey Campbells on Free People to avoid running sans shoes around the streets of Chicago, (especially in March, brr).

Pair with wavy hair curled in uneven sections around a clipless curling iron, like this one from Remington that I love.  Flip hair over (whee!), tousle with fingers, and lightly mist with hairspray for good-Jaz-gone-wrong look.

Finish the look with BB Cream for dewy, glowy skin.  I’m currently loving Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream.  To top it off, add some thick, winged eyeliner, Lakme brand kajal, and black mascara for a Middle-Eastern feel.  Just keep the lip color to a natural, nude finish to avoid going too literal.

Who is your favorite Disney Princess?  What look should I cover next?  Tell me in the comments!