Monday, May 13, 2013

Downton Abbeys' Sybil fashion scandal!


To all those "Downton Abbey" fans, this post will particularly tickle your fancy!
Who could forget in the episode of “Downton Abbey” when rebellious Sybil flaunted her new pair of pantaloons. This scene in episode 4 season 1 of “Downtown Abbey” is possibly the most momentous in “Downton Abbey” fashion archive history. First off, it’s amazing and equally refreshing at how spot on the show is with the accurate fashions during that time. Me being a costume history fanatic, I often find flaws in period films and television when it comes to dressing the characters in what they would have worn during whatever time they're supposed to be in. 
However, "Downton Abbey's" designer, Caroline McCall, (who won the Outstanding Period/Fantasy Costume for a television series award at the 15th annual Designers Guild Awards) has completely nailed it down to the 'T'! 
In the early 1900’s, a very famous French designer, Paul Poiret, designed the first ever pair of pants for women. Technically it wasn’t really a pant. It was more like ginormous parachute pants that gathered at the ankles… Imagine MC Hammer’s pants and you’ve got a pretty good picture in your head of what they looked like. Poiret, already a famous designer by this time, fashioned these 'bloomers' out of inspiration from his muse and fit model, Denise Poiret, his wife. Below is actually an image of one of Poiret's designs and to the right is an image of his wife fashioning his bloomers. Only for the super scandalous and daringly independent minded ladies during this time, the trend stirred up a lot of controversy. I even believe a Miss “CoCo” Channel couldn’t get enough of them. In actuality however, the fad faded pretty quickly during its time, up until WWI came around. Regardless, kudos to all the independent fashionistas back then, I don’t know if I would have had Sybil’s guts. 

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