Archive for : May, 2014

Bridal Lingerie – An Evolution

One of a bride’s most important considerations, second only to her choice of wedding gown, is her choice of bridal lingerie. Just as fashions have evolved over time, so too have the styles and trends in bridal lingerie…

  • Minoan women in ancient Crete saw their breasts as symbols of power. They wore strips of leather around their breasts, pushing them out from the clothing, fully exposed, to achieve a warrior’s appearance.

 

  • Ancient Greek and Roman women bound rather than enhanced their breasts. They used bands of gauze under their loose shift dresses to flatten and support the breast.

 

  • During the Dark Ages, women of European cultures wore no lingerie, save for a plain and shapeless linen shift under their dresses.

 

  • By the Fourteenth Century, early corsetry was coming into vogue. Women not only cinched their waists, but flattened their breasts, achieving a straight and flat front to their torsos.

 

  • Elizabethan-era women wore decorative undergarments, with lace trims, whale-boned corsets, and an early version of the “bustle” to enhance the hips.

 

  • Despite the reputation for being prim, proper, and very buttoned up, the Victorians of the Nineteenth Century embraced colourful, lacy, embellished undergarments. Silk, frilly pantaloons were popular amongst the wealthy; garters were invented to hold stockings in place; and corsetry evolved to accentuate the breasts. Bridal dresses were, for the first time, most commonly white, and lingerie was worn to complement this.

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Over the following century, bridal wear became an industry in and of itself, and bridal lingerie also came into its own. Today, bridal lingerie serves two distinct purposes: to make the bride look and feel sexy, seductive, and beautiful, and also to create the perfect silhouette under the bridal gown. Depending upon the style of bridal gown chosen, today’s bride might wear a backless bodysuit, a bustier and thong, suspenders and stockings, a bridal petticoat, a push-up, plunge, or adhesive bra, and, of course, a garter. The choices are almost endless.

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The Pros and Cons of Wearing an Undershirt

In days gone by, every man wore an undershirt or singlet on a daily basis. Outer garments were not as comfortable against the skin, not as easy to wash, and the undershirt not only provided warmth and comfort, it protected and preserved the life of the outer shirt.

These days, however, undershirts are, for some men, something of a taboo. For others, they’d never leave the house dressed well without one.

So should you wear or not wear a singlet or undershirt?

Here are some pros and cons for wearing an undershirt…

PROS:

v Undershirts (particularly T-shirt styles) reduce the incidence of sweat marks appearing on and staining your shirt or even jacket

v Undershirts can be more comfortable and prevent chafing when wearing stiff or starched dress shirts

v A cotton undershirt can be cool under synthetic shirts in hot humid weather

v An undershirt provides a thin but effective insulating layer of warmth

v Undershirts hide dark nipples from showing through light coloured shirts

v Undershirts disguise heavy chest hair and prevent it from poking through the surface or buttons of a shirt

CONS:

v Multiple layers can feel constrictive

v An undershirt can be stifling in hot weather if worn under a cotton shirt

v Undershirts are obvious under a lightweight or light coloured shirt

v Historically, “elegant” men did not wear undershirts under their dress shirts

v Today’s antiperspirants work so well the need for undershirting is negated

There are, even today, many proponents of the belief that without a vest or undershirt, a man is not properly dressed. Fortunately, the days are passed when all undershirts were obvious through clothing. The humble white vest now has evolved and there are other options available in flesh tones, or other colours to complement the over shirt so as not to be as obvious.

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And from this woman’s perspective, a plain white T-shirt under a casual button down shirt looks very well put together – and gets a thumbs up from me. Think Paul Newman, Steve McQueen, Marlon Brando… enough said!