Yes, you read the title of this post correctly…it’s DC Fashion Week! I know you’re probably thinking…
“What fashion contributions has our nation’s capital made to society?”
You’re not alone. I started to think the same thing. So, I jogged my memory and thought about all of the wardrobe pieces that have taken residence in my closet that have been influenced by Washington, DC culture (WARNING: If you didn’t grow up in the Washington, DC area in the 90s and early 2000s, this walk down memory lane will not resonate with you, sorry). I admit, my mind took me directly back to high school when anything with a Warner Brothers logo or character meant you were a fashion God…think Tweety Bird covered socks and hoodies (I know, don’t judge me). I thought about the various pairs of Parasuco, Sergio or Princess stretch jeans that I petitioned my parents for so that I could fit in with the other girls in high school. Or the early Saturday morning trips to the mall to purchase the latest pair of Air Jordans…luckily I never had to wait in line at Kid’s Foot Locker (having small feet gave me an advantage). I know it’s probably hard to imagine my closet filled with all of these items, but it’s true. I’m happy to report that 90 percent of those dated fashions were served eviction notices long ago, save for a few pairs of Jordans. Anywho, that trip through my fashion history was fun and painful all at the same time. So, how is the District of Columbia influencing fashion culture now?
When people think about Washington, DC, they immediately equate it to the place where laws are created and where our President lives…in other words, politics. Politics to me means conservative, safe and quite frankly, snore city. Think gray and blue power suits and basic black pumps galore. Blah! Washingtonians have definitely taken an essential component of a traditional suit — the blazer — and made it fun…often pairing it with tailored jeans, fun skirts and colorful scarves. The blazer has definitely been revived and it’s fun to see the different ways they can be paired besides with its usual matrimony partner…a basic, conservative pant or skirt.
2. Fitted jeans
So, I already divulged the fact that my closet was full of stretch jeans when I was in high school. While I have no facts or statistics that this comfortable jean style originated in DC, I’m going to go out on a limb and say we were one of the first cities to adopt the trend. I mean, do you know how long ago I was in high school (don’t answer that)? Another embarrassing fact…I used to wear stretch pants UNDER my stretch jeans to make them even tighter. Thanks mom for my chicken legs gene! Anyway, for about as long as I can remember stretch or fitted jeans have been a staple here and not just for the ladies. It wasn’t uncommon to see a young man walking through Georgetown wearing tighter fitting jeans. Now, skinny jeans are a wardrobe staple for the younger generation of women and men all around the world.
3. Michelle Obama
Okay, okay, our fabulous First Lady has mentioned on multiple occassions that she’s from the south side of Chicago, which is hundreds of miles away from the nation’s capital. I’m including her in this list, because I think she represents the new wave of style many working women (including me) in the Washington, DC area have embraced since she took residence at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. I think she is the anti-suit, which I absolutely love! Her preference for J. Crew cardigans over structured suit jackets and her penchant to wear a trendy A-line dress with kitten heels is so refreshing and really welcomed. Thank you FLOTUS for your influence on DC fashion!
So, there you have it. My thoughts on Washington, DC’s influence on fashion. Oh, and if you’re interested in attending any DC Fashion Week events, check out this link for additional information.
Have a great week!
P.S. – If you grew up in the Washington, DC area, comment on this post and let me know which trends you most remember that were influenced by life in DC.