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Women’s Fashion: A Little Black Dress Essay


We all know that the first impressions are the most lasting and that we start to greet people according to their clothes. Still, some believe that such evaluation is wrong, but the things we wear are not trifles. Looking at them, one can describe a person, his or her life and character very exact.

little black dress

It is commonly believed that fashion is built on a particular iconic concept that stays unchangeable while everything else is variable. A little black dress is one of them, it is said to be a necessity of every woman (“A Little Black Dress”). It was in fashion for a long time and seems to remain forever. That is why I have chosen it; this dress gives me an opportunity to keep up with the fashion easily.

There is a huge number of its types, so it is possible to find the one that will suit a particular person. It can be low-necked or shoulderless, with sleeves or without, open at the neck or high-necked, with a cutout back or with back-zipper (Gessner par. 2). I have taken the one that accentuates my figure and draws people’s attention away from some parts of my body that I want to improve. The belt on the waist also makes me look slim.

Moreover, one and the same dress can look appropriate for different occasions. For example, a jacket worn with this dress makes a look a nice variant for daytime while accessories and jewelry help to turn it into an evening garment. I believe that wearing a little black dress I seem to be calm and moderate, but also soigne.

In order to convey femininity, women all over the world wear dresses. It is the best variant for those who want to improve their appearance and make it more womanish. To my mind, a dress helps to avoid the masculine effect that occurs when I put on baggy clothes. With the help of a dress I can make the body curvier, which enhances my self-esteem.

The colors one wears have a great influence on the person and people around, they can even change the mood. It must be acknowledged that black clothes are not the best variant when you are going to work. Black shows that one is depressed, lazy or exhausted (Mandell par. 1). However, I prefer to believe that is color is a classic one, it suits everyone and makes people look elegant and sophisticated. Historically, we associate black with mourning, it is an ascetic color that makes people look strict and reserved.

As it was difficult to get with natural dyes, black reminds about luxury, as it connoted good social status. In the 18th century, it was thought to be dowdy and represented people of the middle social class. Black came into fashion as a gorgeous color for an evening dress in 19th century. It revealed the spirit of pride and recalcitrance at that time.

Consequently, a black dress includes a number of associations that were created through a long period of time, which make me feel enigmatic. Today we have a mixture of elevated and down-to-earth elements. The ability to combine contrasting ideas in the appearance makes this dress extremely attractive. It makes me look as if chic and sophisticated clothes are those I wear on weekdays in everyday life (Gessner par. 6).

According to Nancy MacDonell-Smith a black dress is a symbol of one’s individuality, which shows that a woman took a decision to live the life by her own code (37). This message is the one that appeals to me, and also I wear this dress in order to reveal it.

Today a little black dress is already a term of our cultural vocabulary that everyone knows. Say it, and the image of an elegant woman with a good dress sense appears in the mind without efforts, which makes me feel special. This dress is a weapon that can easily change my appearance and mood, make me embraceable or demure, impudent or frugal.

It is interesting that this dress is adored by women so much that they even created The Black Dress Society. This is a ladies social club, which gathers women to visit upscale events, participate in charity work, and deepen into the arts.

A little black dress is a cross functional element of women’s wardrobe. Depending on the clothes and accessories I wear with it, my style changes. It may vary from slangy to conservative. The type of fabrication also plays a huge role in the created image. According to the normative order, this dress is sure to be considered as a normal and decent. It is the golden mean between ordinariness and remarkability.

That is why it is the best way to show that I can easily stay in sync with the changing fashion. Wearing a little black dress, I can look wonderful in every situation, which attracts other people’s attention and prepossess them. At first I put it on as I wanted to change the style. This dress can be combined with different items and alter its message in such a manner. Thus, the dress erases the boundaries and limits and allows me to express myself, so I believe it to be the best variant for a dinner or party.

business woman

One more adorable element of women’s wardrobe is a white blouse (“A White Blouse”). It is a classic and formal piece of clothing, which is important for the cultural and historical process and was used to differentiate wealthy people. It turned out to represent the female beauty when the Gibson Girl appeared in one. Starting with the Victorian era, the white shirtwaist was associated with neatness and chastity. Soon it became a symbol of women who referred to the working class and wanted to show their independence.

The women’s white blouse or shirt has a range of different kinds; however, all of them are based on the men’s formal shirt. The blouse we have today was created on the basis of a shirtwaist and a middy-blouse.

As the waist became to be considered one of the most attractive parts of women’s body, the clothes were changed to show this and emphasize female beauty. It was worn with a skirt and jacket that made up a gorgeous combination. At first, this kind of a “suit” was considered to be an element of the clerical working woman, but soon it spread to all social classes and entered a fashion industry. Nevertheless, it also gained the meaning of poverty, as it was sewed by women who worked in poor conditions and earned little money.

The word “blouse” came into the language to define a sailor style shirt that became popular among women in the late 19th century. This happened due to the reforms that allowed women to participate in the activities that were thought to be male, especially sport ones. After some modifications a blouse with a loose form appeared. It can be called “rational” clothing, as it followed the needs of the people of that time (Brough 7).

Up-to-date blouses became a part of women’s wardrobe at the beginning of the 20th century. They were even worn with a tie, resembling an androgynous look. They reveal the time and the spirit of the reforms and fashion changes. It is connected with alteration in social attitude towards wearing comfort and gender equality.

I strongly believe that a woman who wears a white blouse is associated with a busy and inspired person, so I put it on to look engaged and satisfied with the things I do. This garment can be made of simple fabric and be cheap. However, its luxury variant also exists. Rich in quality materials and additional elements as handmade lace or adorned collar change an ordinary shirt into an elegant blouse.

This is the variant I choose. It makes me feel important and noticeable. To look casual, I can wear it with an oversize vest and boots. Such slight disarray does not create an unkempt appearance, but shows that I am not extremely strict and inaccessible. It shows people that I am combining reserve and abandon, live in movement and can bend with the wind.

I feel very feminine while wearing a white blouse. I can choose one to my liking as it may be with embroidery, ruffles and various collars. I have bought a blouse to wear it at the college, as white is considered to be the color of wisdom. Moreover, a kind of a stereotype occurred, according to which white is associated with a uniform.

Some people can feel uncomfortable wearing white, as they do not want to draw too much attention to themselves. In such situations it is better to give preference to a beige blouse. It can be considered as a modification of a white one, as they look similar. However, beige may make one invisible and I do not want to become a mousy person. That is why bright snow-white color is the best variant for me, as it shows a self-confident person.

Thus, a white blouse reflects the values of our society. Assertive, well-educated and busy people are the ones who rule the world. Light flavor of independence and power emanates from me when I wear a white blouse. As a rule, it is not a garment one puts on from the early childhood and has it on always since that time.

It shows that I became mature and has already settled in life. In addition, I can demonstrate some personal characteristics through the chosen type of this garment. This item does not look like one that can be suitable for any occasion. It is better to put it on while studying or working. Like glasses, a white short makes me feel and look smarter and more intelligent. I wear this blouse to attract people’s attention to my personality and attainments, make them treat me seriously. While a black dress points out my appearance.

A little black dress and a white blouse can be easily called iconic items. They are the basis of modern fashion not only in America, but almost all over the world and can be considered multi-cultural. Not everyone knows their background and meaning; however, people feel and understand the same message that is produced by the clothing on a subconscious level. Of course, our self cannot be changed with the change of the clothes we wear, but the influence leaves a mark on our mind.

Works Cited

“A Little Black Dress” n.d. JPEG file.

” n.d. JPEG file.

Brough, Dean 2013, The Classic White Formal Shirt: A Powerful Emblem of Social Change. PDF file.

Gessner, Liz. n.d. . n.d.

MacDonell-Smith, Nancy. The Classic Ten: The True Story of the Little Black Dress and Nine Other Fashion Favorites, London: Penguin, 2003. Print.

Mandell, Lisa. What Message Is the Color You’re Wearing Sending? 2010.

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IvyPanda. (2020, April 9). Women's Fashion: A Little Black Dress. Retrieved from https://ivypanda.com/essays/womens-fashion-a-little-black-dress/

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"Women's Fashion: A Little Black Dress." IvyPanda, 9 Apr. 2020, ivypanda.com/essays/womens-fashion-a-little-black-dress/.

1. IvyPanda. "Women's Fashion: A Little Black Dress." April 9, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/womens-fashion-a-little-black-dress/.


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IvyPanda. "Women's Fashion: A Little Black Dress." April 9, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/womens-fashion-a-little-black-dress/.

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IvyPanda. 2020. "Women's Fashion: A Little Black Dress." April 9, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/womens-fashion-a-little-black-dress/.

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IvyPanda. (2020) 'Women's Fashion: A Little Black Dress'. 9 April.

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