The Handkerchief Hem- A Metaphor for Current Affairs?

         Coco Chanel once stated :

Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening.

The idea makes sense, a lot of us use the way we dress to convey how we are feeling, without even realising it. The ‘ so-called’ Hemline theory goes back decades. Pre 1920’s when women were merely treated as a belonging of the husband, their rights limited and therefore their confidence most likely was also, skirt lengths conformed to one length: long. Contrast with more prosperous times of the 1920’s and 1960’s when skirt lengths got shorter with social progression and enhanced freedom. It could be said that this theory has somewhat fallen apart in recent decades, as one can buy any length or style of skirt just about anywhere- never mind that the idea that a woman skirt length demonstrates the state of the financial world, is profoundly unfeminist.

Despite this, it is hard to believe that the higgledy piggledy hemline of this season is a mere coincidence. The world has arguably been shaken more in the past year than ever before. In November, the world gasped as Donald Trump defeated Hillary Clinton to become US President, prior to that we were hit with Brexit, which as of last week has forced the UK out of Europe, and as all this has been going on the pound continues to depreciate as inflation continues to rise. 

All these startling news stories do have one thing in common: uncertainty. No one from politicians to academics to us ordinary folk know what the future holds, the media fills us with so many conflicting opinions that it makes it difficult to ever fully understand what the hell is going on. Thus in true form fashion designers have demonstrated this notion of uneasiness through their collections that march down catwalks and end up reflected in the pieces we purchase from high street moguls- all hail the handkerchief hemline. 

From shirts to dresses, to even tops and shirts this uneven hem line has dominated trends this season and will continue to do so next season also. Aside from the embodiment of this trend it also stands out as being practical, fashionable and suitable for all body types-  in fact this may be the most transferable hem to ever grace the catwalk. I happen to love this hemline, its cool but it alludes grace and class- rather than walk you glide, with your skirt swishing behind you. I like this style worn oversized as long as you work with proportions, for example for a dress or skirt need the waist nipped in to enhance your shape and to work with the fluidity of the hemline.

A look I am particularly fond of if the handkerchief shirt, especially when the hem is asymmetrical. it is best paired with slimline cigarette trousers, and heeled stilettos or pointed flats. Keep the rest of your hems sharp to let the shirt do all the talking. 

This lumberjack style dress is my favourite purchase in a long time. Not only is it incredibly on trend but it is also so comfortable and versatile. I have worn it with roughed up, laced flat boots for a daytime look and then vamped it up with these silver boots for a transition into the evening. I am still waiting on the arrival of my Gucci belt, but I plan on wearing it with this dress (and everything else) to fully nip in the waist. It already has a drawstring waist which is perfect for keeping it casual but if like me you prefer a more defined waist then definitely belt it up.

This style of skirt or dress allows us to focus on the clinched areas of our bodies. Think sculptural accessories, such as chunky bangles, jeweled earrings, a statement necklace or a fabulous shoe.

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