For Fall 2011, designers have been thinking outside the box. If they weren’t we would worry. This season some significant ideas are inspired by using materials out of context, like dressy fabrics in looks designed to be more casual. For instance, satin shirts can soften up a suit look for work, and when worn with jeans make a great look for an evening out. Lace tops can be worn in much the same way.
The Bow Blouse
The important things to get right when buying a feminine blouse are the fabric quality and the garment details. Inexpensive dressy fabrics like satin and lace can look really cheesy. Generally the cheaper the garment the cheaper the fabric used to make it. BUT, it’s not always a given that low cost equals low quality. If you know what to look for, it’s possible to have style and value.
The drape of the fabric is the way it flows over things (like the body beneath it). Stiff fabrics have less drape, and fluid fabrics have more. You want a satin shirt to have a little weight to the fabric to create this drape.
The Lace Blouse
Lace usually looks and feel best when there is some substance to the fabric. Look for cotton, silk and even poly blends and avoid nylon.
Handfeel is a term used in the industry to describe the way a fabric feels to the touch. Feel is the second thing a consumer reacts to (color is first). We imagine how the garment will feel on our body by touching it. Inexpensive satin and lace can have a stiffer, slicker handfeel, as if a drop of water would roll off rather than absorb.
Satin and lace have a tendency to pucker at the seams and buttonholes. This happens more with fabrics made from nylon and low-end polyester because they are slippery and harder to control during production. Puckering is a sign of bad quality control and sometimes bad quality.
A Sad Waste of Good Lace!
Even though it’s a standard retail practice, we still get a little disoriented when we walk through the stores in July and see winter merchandise. The early fall collections the stores bring in are meant to whet our appetite. The fashion engine is always driven by what’s coming next. Here are 5 new directions for Fall 2011