Friday, December 16, 2011

Style Inspiration: Polka Dots

Actress Rose Byrne looks cute and chic in a polka dot blouse.

Rose Byrne looked adorable in polka dots at the Cinema Society and Giorgio Armani's screening of "Albert Nobbs," at the Museum of Modern Art earlier this week.  On another note, I've noticed that she's one of the few women who can successfully pull off that haircut.

I always associate polka dots with the '50s and '60s, for a number of reasons: '50s pinups in polka dots, Lucille Ball, Brian Hyland's 1960s chart topper "Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini," and generally, the fashion trends of those times.  Yet, polka dots had been around way before then, having gained popularity in the mid-19th century.  It derives its name from the polka dance, which was popular at the same time but not really related to the fashion.

From Vogue Italia:
Everything started with a dance, that spread in Europe and in the United States from Czechoslovakia. It was in vogue until the end of the 19th century, just the time to launch the polka dot pattern. In the Thirties this pattern became trendy on silhouettes, on fluttering chiffons and silks: tiny polka dots appeared mostly on black or blue fabrics.  The trend became huge in the Fifties, especially in white and red.  This was the era of pin ups: totally feminine, apparently na├»ve, definitely seductive.
The trend is still very relevant and popular today.  Here's some inspiration:

Antique Trader
Vogue Italia
Socialite Life
T Magazine
New Dress a Day

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