Category: term definition

beadnet dress

A decorative sheath dress made of beads worn in ancient Egypt. The Details The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston has two reconstructed Egyptian beadnet dresses in its...

bloomers

Bloomers are a bifurcated garment that were worn under dresses in the 19th century. They soon became a symbol of women’s rights because early activist Amelia Bloomer wore drawers long enough to stick out from under her dress.

bustle

A pad or frame worn under a skirt puffing it out behind.

chlamys

A chlamys is a rectangular cloak fastened at the neck or shoulder that wraps around the body like a cape.

dalmatic tunic

A t-shaped tunic with very wide sleeves. Worn by both men and women during the Byzantine empire.

exomis

A short, asymmetrical wrap garment pinned at the left shoulder, worn by men in Ancient Greece.

fibula

The fibula, which was popular in Greek culture, served as a pin to both hold garments together and to show status of those with prestige or power within society.

fichu

A triangular shawl, usually worn by women, draped over the shoulders and crossed or fastened in the front.

French hood

A rounded headdress for women that was popular in the 16th century (from 1540). 

frock coat

The frock coat is a collared man’s coat worn through the eighteenth to the twentieth century. It rose to prominence mainly in the nineteenth century, especially Victorian England. It is characterized as a knee-length overcoat, buttoned down to the waist, that drapes over the lower half of the body like a skirt.

gabled hood

A woman’s headdress that is wired to create a point at the top of the head and has fabric that drapes from the back of the head.

knickerbockers

Knickerbockers or “knickers” are full or baggy trousers gathered at the knee or just below and usually fastened with either a button or buckle. Knickerbockers were initially worn by men in the late 19th century and gradually became part of women’s fashion. The garment was usually worn as sportswear and became especially popular among golfers and female cyclists, hence the term “pedal pushers”.

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