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Ladies Fashion

Updated on June 17, 2010

Ladies fashion is such a large industry because it is so varied in so many ways.  Not only are there many different types of garments, but there are many different types and sizes of women to provide those garments for.  There is fashion appropriate for warmer climates and ladies fashions for cold weather climates.  Ladies fashion clothing ranges from casual and everyday wear to the very formal.  There is ladies fashion meant to be worn out on public and ladies fashion that only is worn on the runway.  There are lines of ladies clothing that are manufactured en masse, fill our store shelves, and are meant for anyone and everyone to wear.  Conversely, there are lines of ladies fashion that are only made once and only worn by the elite.  Some clothes can be bought in ladies fashion shops while others are only available from ladies fashion online outlets.  You could spend a lifetime talking about all these different aspects of ladies fashion, so this hub will just go through the basic types of ladies clothing.

There are several different types of ladies fashion tops.  Tops can come in almost any fabric so my discussion will center on the different cuts.  One of the most common top cuts is the crew neck.  You will not see this variety of ladies shirt in high fashion because it is usually reserved for T-shirts and casual shirts.  A crew neck is a shirt where the neckline is a circular line around the neck with no dips toward the bust or shoulders.  Another common casual ladies fashion for shirts is the V-neck.  The difference between V-neck and crew neck is that the neckline plunges into a V in the front.  The depth of the V varies and can be subtle or drastic so that cleavage shows.  Along the same lines as the crew neck and V-neck is the scoop neck.  These shirts have a neckline that plunges toward the bosom in a U-shape.  It is called a scoop neck because it looks like someone took a scoop out of the neckline.  Generally, the scoop neck designation is used if the neckline is cut low.  You will not see people use that description if there is a subtle curvature to the neckline.  All three of these varieties of ladies top fashion can have short sleeves, long sleeves, or cap sleeves.  Cap sleeves are sleeves that extend just past the shoulder and are even shorter than traditional short sleeves.

Other types of ladies fashion for shirts include corsets or bodices, empire waist shirts or peasant tops, and halter tops. Corsets are very tight fitting tops that often lace up the sides, the front, or the back. Sometimes they do not lace and instead use snaps or eye hooks to close. These tops are designed to fit snugly and follow a woman’s curves around the bosom, into the waist, and flare out at the hips. Corsets can be worn for casual occasions or formal ones. It just depends on what you pair them with. Empire waist shirts are ones where there is a waistline sewn into the shirt directly below the bosom and the shirt is loose under that point. A very popular type of empire waist shirt is the peasant top. Finally, halter tops are backless ladies shirts that are often cut short so that the stomach is exposed. They sometimes have a wrap neck and other times are more like a corset with no straps or sleeves.

Tops only cover half of the basic ladies fashions. There are four basic types of bottoms that you can pair these shirts with including skirts, shorts, pants, and jeans. Jeans are of course meant for casual use. They come in a wide variety of cuts including boot cut, low rise, straight leg, wide leg, flare, high waist, etc. Jeans are one piece of ladies fashion that every woman struggles with. Every woman’s body is different and jeans are relatively stiff fabric so it can be hard sometimes to find a pair that fit your curves comfortably. Many women find one brand of jeans that fit them well and stick with it for a very long time. Other pants can be cut in similar styles to jeans, but they are generally made of more flexible and versatile fabrics. There are both casual pants and dress pants. Casual style pants include cargo pants, corduroys, leggings, or khakis. Pants for more formal use like the office or a night out are often made of materials like wool, linen, or polyester. Many dress pants for women are designed to be longer than usual so that they can be worn with high heels.

Shorts have varied in length over the years. At one time shorts were cut so that they came to the knee. Over time, the hemline has gotten shorter and shorter. Many ladies shorts fashions are now so short that they barely cover any leg at all. However, there is a trend going back to the old hemlines as well. You can purchase shorts today that are cut to just above the knee that are considered quite fashionable. Skirts come in all lengths ranging from miniskirts that just cover the backside to floor length skirts. Some skirts are straight cuts that hug the hips and thighs while others are loose cut and flow freely. The shorter skirts are generally thought of as more casual or appropriate for nightlife and longer skirts ranging from the knee to the floor are used more frequently in the work place.

There are many different styles of ladies dress fashion. Ladies fashion dresses vary from the very casual sundress to the very formal gown with lots of styles in between. A sundress is an informal, sleeveless dress made from lightweight fabrics and often made with floral prints or bright colors. They are comfortable and usually worn in the summer or in warm weather. There is no particular cut or fit that is associated with the sundress. Instead, a dress is classified a sundress if it can be worn in certain circumstances and is casual. A gown is dress worn for formal occasions. They usually have a fitted bodice and a full floor length skirt. Sometimes they have trains or the skirts are made even fuller with the addition of a crinoline.

Some dresses are categorized by their cut or how they fit on the body. One type of dress is called the sheath. A sheath dress is fitted and most of the time it is sleeveless. There is no waist seam and the dress is one long sheath of material covering the body. In contrast to the sheath, there is the shift. A shift dress is fitted through the bust but falls straight past the waist with no shaping at all. The shift does not have a waist seem either, but it is not fitted like the sheath. Expanding on the shift design is the tent. A tent dress is not fitted anywhere. The dress falls like a tent from above the bust. This style of dress is not particularly flattering for many women. One final style of dress is called the wrap. These dresses literally wrap around the wearer. You generally start by putting your arms through the armholes and then wrap the dress around you like a towel. The dress often stays closed with a knot or snaps at one side around the waistline.

Ladies fashion also includes shoes. Ladies fashion shoes come in a many styles and varieties including sneakers, sandals, pumps, heels, clogs, and boots. The footwear you chose depends on the clothing that you are wearing for the most part. Nevertheless, some varieties of footwear can be worn almost anytime. For example, ladies fashion boots come in so many different styles, colors, and materials that they can be worn almost anytime and anywhere. Ladies dress boots can be worn in the office during the day or in a club at night. They work during daylight hours because your dress pants or long skirts conceal most of the boots. At night, you short dresses show off the high boots. Ladies slipper boots or moccasin boots used to be just for wearing around the house, but now they are made sturdy enough to be worn out in any kind of weather. Each woman probably has to have at least four pairs of shoes to make her wardrobe complete. Every woman needs a pair of sneakers, sandals, dress shoes like pumps or high heels, and boots.

Ladies fashion can be rounded out with accessories. Ladies fashion accessories are their own industry. Accessories include hats, belts, jewelry, tights, headbands, purses, etc. Ladies fashion hats are worn most often in spring and winter. The spring variety of hat is the large sun hat like what you see the ladies wearing at the Kentucky Derby and I the winter women need to find a fashionable way to keep their ears warm in cold weather. Ladies fashion belts can mean the difference between a boring outfit and a glamorous one. A plain black dress can be changed from boring to wow with the addition of a skinny black belt or a thick belt with a large decorative buckle. Belts are also slimming so if you are looking for a way to make yourself look a little better in a sheath then adding a belt could be the answer. All accessories can make a difference and should not be overlooked when putting together your outfits.

Underneath all of the ladies fashion I described above are the intimates. Ladies intimates are an important part of ladies fashion because they can compliment or ruin any outfit of you choose the wrong panties or bra. Intimates are also becoming more and more a high fashion item. Below you can see footage from one of the most famous fashion shows around – the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show!


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