Trending Fashion

On January 5, 1797, John Hetherington, a London haberdasher,  stepped out into the public with the first top hat. It caused a riot, and Hetherington was arrested.  The arresting officer said:

He had such a tall and shiny construction on his head that it must have terrified nervous people.  The sight of this construction was so overstated that various women fainted, children began to cry and dogs started to bark.  One child broke his arm among all the jostling“.

The London Times came out in favor of the hat, and predicted that it would become a fashion staple. It was declared “a significant advance in the transformation of dress“.

I suppose the only time I was at the forefront of fashion was when I wore bib overalls in my early 20’s. That sure didn’t last long. These days I am a corduroy and sweater sort of person, dressed for comfort, not fashion, although those overalls were pretty comfy.

What do you think it would take to get a similar reaction to fashion today?  When have you been at the forefront of fashion? Own any fun hats?  Where would you like fashion to trend now?


25 thoughts on “Trending Fashion”

  1. That’s really fun! Thanks for finding the historical tidbit there, Renee. I never thought top hats would have provoked that reaction.

    What would cause that reaction now?? Well evidently, in the US, any time a female nipple is shown people go into shock.
    Add in Lady Gaga and her dress of meat.
    Or the kids who wrap themselves in tape for prom.
    Or Bjork and her swan dress…
    or how about the First Lady and her jackets?
    There are so many things that could lead to *someone* proclaiming outrageous fashion.
    Me? I had a hat with fuzzy ears on it… was great for parties. Not sure it’s still downstairs in a box. I think so…

    We need less neckties and less sleeves. That’s my take on fashion.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. I have never been at the forefront of fashion and never will be. I dress for comfort and, in the cooler months, warmth.

    However, since I have lost 30-plus pounds since April, I have been forced to buy new (or new-to-me) clothing. Youngest daughter went to the thrift store and bought several things in November and, more recently, I’ve bought some things mail order, which has been mostly successful. I feel like I’m more dressed up than I have been in years, maybe because I’m no longer dressing in the rags that I had before. My usual outfits these days are pants (newest purchase is a pair of gray corduroy jeans), a turtleneck or mock turtleneck, and a zip-up cardigan sweater (I have one black and one dark red). Is that fashionable?

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Okay I’m still laughing about this. But why after the first couple of takes didn’t they tape some sandpaper or something on to the bottom of those polar bear feet?

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I feel like I’m about the least qualified person on the planet to comment on anything having to do with fashion.

    However I would love to live in a time (for a little bit anyway) when something like a man wearing a tall hat would cause a riot. Or Ravel unleashing new music. While people today get themselves all riled up about all kinds of things, I don’t recall an actual riot over Lady Gaga’s meat dress.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Rise and Shine Baboons,

    Well, I nearly laid an egg cackling at the bear video, but I am with VS—Why did they not help the poor guy?

    As a teen I was very interested in fashion. Now, not so much. I mostly dress for comfort. I have found BZEEs shoes which have gel in the soles, and especially on the arch support. They are both great looking and fashionable. My favorite pair are the “Monet” pattern that look like the painting of Monet’s water lilies. My nod to fashion in my old age.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks for the Bzees tip, Jacque. My feet are my weakest link and these look wonderful, and they come in wide, which is a rare feature in decent looking shoes. Do you buy online or are does some local store carry them? I will be checking them out, either way.


      1. The ones I have I purchased at the Naturalizer outlet in Medford. I think Nordstrom has them, too. They have an online store. They change styles each year—you have to buy early in the year to get the colors. At the end of the year they are all boring black.


      2. I purchased a pair of gel insoles a few years ago. Just the insoles, so you can put them in whatever shoes you want. They were quite comfy at first, but over time they flatten out and need to be replaced.


  5. i was the first person in bloomington in bell bottoms in 1967 with my mom returning from new york city with 2 pairs
    i was hot stuff as the fashion trend setter for years after that
    today i love fashion and where it is in current transition
    to get some strong reaction you really need to go over the top today because the norm is all over the place
    nipples will do it ben but i think it will be ap related stuff to wearables
    clothing that has speakers in it or vibrators or cooling mechanisms maybe changing colors with a dial blue coming into the room turning red just for fun then neon green to make a point
    i love that my fashion style is a normal thing today that hasn’t always been the case
    jacket jeans and button down is my mantra
    hawaiian shirt and birkies in the summer
    life is grand

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Fun post, Renee. I had no idea the top hat caused such consternation when it was first introduced.

    When I was younger, I was vaguely aware of fashion trends, though I was never in a position to act on that awareness. Of course, some fashion trends were so popular that they became unavoidable over time. Like bell bottom pants! The A-line dress. The bikini. Or the mini skirt.

    When I was in high school, brightly colored tights started showing up. At the time, dark blue tights were de rigueur; deep bottle green ones were acceptable, but the bright red and yellow ones that became available never really caught on. That, of course, didn’t stop me. The bright red ones were my favorite. It didn’t hurt that the Danish feminists were soon dubbed “rødstrømper,” meaning red stockings. I was a full fledged rebel from the time I was thirteen.

    While I lived in Moscow (1964), I wore mini skirts and clogs. Not that it was fashionable, but because that’s what I was comfortable in, and practically all I had. Many an old Russian woman on public transport would tug at the hem of my skirt in an effort to relay to me their disapproval. Alas, there was nothing I could do about it. I didn’t own any longer skirts or dresses.

    On the beach and in the embassy courtyard, I sun bathed in a modest two piece bathing suit – not a bikini by a long shot – yet, the American marine guards swarmed around like it was.

    When I arrived in the US in the fall of 1965, my ex mother-in-law didn’t approve of my short skirts either. She promptly took me shopping, and bought me an extremely proper and boring dress to be worn at the delayed wedding reception she hosted for wasband and me. That, and a wrist corsage! I had never seen or heard of such a thing, and I felt extremely self conscious about it, not to mention foolish. Unfortunately for her, her attempts at gentrifying me didn’t take.

    I do like nice clothes. To me that means well made, from quality fabrics, and comfortable. I have a couple of friends who are extremely fashion conscious, and who are always well put together. I know that at least one of them thinks I’m a bit too casual, but as I see it, that’s her problem.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. In maybe 9th grade my hair wasn’t yet long enough for a pony tail, and I thought I was being very forward thinking to wear my hair in pigtails, which I must have seen in some magazine as a brand new trend. It did catch on, but not till quite a bit later…

    I thought I was rejecting fashion as a hippie-wannabe in early 20s, but now I see that I was just following a different trend than mainstream. It had its own uniform – the aforementioned bell bottoms and long straight hair, no make-up.
    I have a great burgundy colored felt hat with a feather – keep it for costume (which is why I bought it). I would actually kind of like for us to return to wearing hats – maybe not all the time, but for special occasions.


    1. I wear a hat every year for the annual Kentucky Derby party. I have to admit to feeling silly all the while.

      One of my old bosses, Marty Weinstein, gave me a beautiful (and I’m sure expensive) beautiful green felt hat for Christmas one year. I made a valiant attempt at incorporating it into my wardrobe, but no amount of fakery on my part could hide that I’m just not a hat person. For reasons of skin cancer, I’m supposed to wear a hat whenever I’m out in the elements, and it’s a real struggle. I can’t stand the feel of a hat on my head. Too hot and uncomfortable.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I remember my sister had bib overalls forty years ago or so, in bright colors like red and yellow. I bought a pair, but I found it annoying to always have to undo the straps when visiting the bathroom. They were cute but impractical.

    Young people are fortunate to have lots of fashion choices these days. They can wear or pierce or tattoo whatever they want and no one will faint.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. Not sure about reaction but sometimes hats are viewed oddly as if people are trying to be too trendy. I like the fedora and was thinking that maybe with the sun problems and the ozone it may have picked up again. I like the common man 1950s look. The Fred MCMurray dad look…. oh dear…should I have said that?


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