Over the years, the public has witnessed some crazy and artistic moments in the fashion industry, some well-known and others not so well-known. These have been moments of definition in the fashion industry that have stood out to designers, celebrities, enthusiasts and customers and made an impact on the way that we dress. Most of these moments have helped create trends, take fashion to the next level, inspire creativity, or simply leave a stamp in your memory that has influenced the way that you dress every day.
Fashion moments are instances throughout history that have caused a stir or lead us to a new place in the fashion industry. Some of these moments are more personal to designers and celebrities, while others have been witnessed by the masses and changed the industry of fashion as a whole.
10. Lady Gaga’s Meat Dress
When Lady Gaga walked the red carpet at the MTV Video Music Awards, it caused a great deal of press and controversy. People were left wondering why would anyone wear a dress made of meat? The thing is, we all kept watching and had a hard time looking away. We yearned for more and were interested in what she had to say about it. The bottom line though about this fashion moment is that the end result was sort of liberating. Lady Gaga dressing in this now iconic meat dress served as a reminder to people and designers to not stop being innovative, unique, and dressing and designing in an artistic way.
9. Coco Chanel’s Little Black Dress
When the iconic fashion designer Coco Chanel created the “Little Black Dress” in the early 1920’s, it impacted fashion and still resonates with the industry today. Every designer on this planet has their own version of this dress, making it a closet staple for women all over the world.
A little known secret is that before the 20’s, when this dress became socially acceptable, black was only tolerable to be worn during times of mourning. As soon as Chanel published images of her creation in Vogue magazine, the dress instantly became known as her “Ford” because just like the car, it was acceptable to all women of all social classes.
8. Marilyn Monroe’s Wind Blown White Dress
All we need to do is say the name Marilyn Monroe and most likely this is the image everyone has in their minds. The photo is taken from the movie The Seven Year Itch, when Monroe is standing over a subway grate and her dress is blown up in the air.
This dress was created by costume designer William Travilla who had no idea that this would become one of the most well-known images of the twentieth century, let alone the fashion industry. This scene allowed women to be sexy and become sexualized in their fashion choices. Designers took this moment and started creating highly alluring pieces and women loved every second of it!
7. The Very First “It” Bag
Before the many modern day “it” bags, there was only one. In 1956, the House of Hermes designed a classic and coveted bag named after actress Grace Kelly and it revolutionized the handbag industry as a whole. While the Hermes “Kelly Bag” still remains one of the most yearned for and expensive bags on the market, it has become a symbol for something that both designers and customers yearn for. Each season whenever handbags are released to the public, designers want theirs to be known at the notorious “it” bag of the season that everyone wants to get their hands on. This will never change as far as we are concerned.
6. Vivienne Westwood Creates “Punk”
The 1970’s contained many different defining moments in the fashion industry, but one stood out beyond all others because it was new and simply because it still exists today. Well-known designer Vivienne Westwood created the term “punk” to define a unique style that included lots of leather, metal hardware, ripped t-shirts, and quite frankly, showering less. During a time when free love and hippie attire was at its most popular, this new style was radically accepted or rejected by fashion lovers during this time. No matter how you look at it, its influence still exists today and is repeated over and over again to mimic the classic punk look.
Looking back on the many fashion choices of Madonna is certainly enough inspiration to help redefine anyone’s style, but there is one specific moment that stands out as a fashion moment during her successful career; her pointed corset from the “Blonde Ambition Tour.” During this time, she really opened up the discussion of women’s sexuality in a way that not even Marilyn Monroe was able to do! She truly put it all out there and numerous designers and fans followed in her footsteps. Designer Jean Paul Gaultier even deemed this piece so iconic and inspirational that it was lent to him by Madonna to include in his exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum in early 2014.
4. Sex and the City
The spunk and style of Carrie Bradshaw, the lead character on HBO’s hit television series, sucked in women all over the world to tune in every week to gain style inspiration from the character played by actress Sarah Jessica Parker. Every scene of this now iconic show featured a new creation by notorious costume designer Patricia Field as we were all in awe and completed captivated by the designer duds this broke New York City writer wore. Her style inspired many women to move to New York City to pursue a writing career, thinking that it somehow came with the wardrobe.
3. Kate Middleton’s Wedding Dress
The whole world waited in complete awe to see what the Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton would wear as she walked down the aisle to marry Prince William and everyone was pleasantly surprised. Her dress was stunning and not at all matronly like everyone had expected, but just the right balance of elegant, fashion forward and modest. After all, Kate embodies all of those aspects, so it was only natural that her wedding dress would, too.
Since long sleeve and a higher neckline wasn’t something that most designers were doing in the bridal industry, this struck inspiration in them all, as well as knowing that this would be a trend their customers would want, too. She took the world of bridal couture by storm and certainly left her mark.
2. Bjork’s Swan Dress at the 86th Annual Academy Awards Red Carpet
While this isn’t the most influential fashion moment on this list, it is certainly one of the most memorable. How could anyone forget Bjork waltzing down the red carpet at one of the most prestigious award shows of all time wearing a mockery of a dress? In retrospect, she knew what she was doing, just like Lady Gaga, and at the very least got attention from the press and everyone turning their heads in her direction. Not the classiest fashion moment, but a reminder to everyone that fashion is something to have fun with and shouldn’t always be taken so seriously.
1. The Death of Alexander McQueen
When the world heard of the death of Alexander McQueen, one of the most innovative, avant garde designers of current day, a black cloud was cast over the fashion industry. It was a devastating moment in which the sadness was almost tangible, a knowing that an era of fashion had died with him.
He is most well-known for his skulls, friendship with Isabella Blow, and fashion forward runway shows that left audiences in suspense season after season. He was truly one of the most forward thinking designers of our time and set the stage for the way that emerging designers for years to come.