Fashion is actually a generic term for any given style, type, design, or category of clothes. It is used in different contexts to refer to distinctive styles. In general, fashion is a way of relating to or expressing personal ideas, preferences, or affiliations. The word is sometimes used interchangeably with ‘content,’ which is what we usually mean when discussing style. The term is also used, sometimes in the same way, to describe certain distinctive elements or features of a style or outfit.
Fashions come in many different forms and can be created for any age, social class, or even ethnicity. The term can also cover any phase of human life as it relates to dressing. Fashion can be used, however, to refer to particular kinds of clothing. Some people see fashion as limited to what can be worn in certain circumstances in modern fashion. This narrow view of fashion is what led some clothing designers to label certain clothes as “the new modern.”
Fashion can include any number of things. Common elements in this category include clothing for work or daily life, formal or casual apparel, evening or formal attire, accessories like jewelry, shoes, purses, and other decor or styling accessories, and so on. In recent years the term has been applied to a broad range of objects including toys, furniture, house furniture, architecture, and decorative art. Some people use the term more loosely to describe particular styles of clothing or objects as seen through an individual’s eyes.
The first decade of the twentieth century was a period of rapid fashion changes. During that decade designers started to experiment with new materials, colors, and patterns. They were trying to create new ways for clothing to be made, wore, and viewed. The new designs included complex textiles, wool, silk, velvet, cotton, rayon, nylon, rubber, leather, and synthetic materials.
In those years there were many attempts by designers and others to popularize “American” fashion. American fashion included such elements as jeans, jazz, pop, fairytale, baseball, and African-American fashion. There were also attempts by designers and couturiers to make clothes that were gender-specific. For example, it was common for men to wear white tuxedos during evening events. The popularity of this trend can be attributed to increasing numbers of working-class citizens entering the professions during that time.
As fashions changed so did the businesses associated with them. The fashion industry experienced growth and expansion. The main elements that contributed to this were new materials, new patterns, and innovative fashion designs. Many new and existing retailers experienced great growth in business. Fashions and styles expanded to include a broader range of materials, colors, and patterns.