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Patterns in Fashion: vi. Geometric

  • From the repeating, geometric patterns of ancient Islamic art to the bold, architectural designs of the ancient Egyptians, the mathematical modernity of geometry has been used artistically for Millenia.

  • The Aztec civilisation of northern Mexico was famous for its textiles, particularly large blankets with geometric designs worn by rich men -'Serapes'. These blankets were incorporated into American mid-Western style and inspired twentieth Century American designer Ralph Lauren.

  • In the 1920s, the Art Deco aesthetic style embodied Modernism, including bold, linear patterns on straight-lined clothes, accessories and hairstyles. Some of these styles were replicated in the early 1970s Art Deco revival in fashion, for example, the designs of Biba.

Geometric Prints in Fashion

  • The Beatnik style of the 1950s included Modernist, Abstract and Cubist prints in blouses, skirts, scarves etc. The 1950s mid-Century Modern art, architecture and interior design was also represented in clean-lined, minimalistic fashion designs, worn by First Lady of America, Jackie Kennedy and Audrey Hepburn's Hubert Givenchy designed outfits.

  • The 1960s Mod ('Modern') style incorporated bold, primary coloured-patterns into clothing, particularly the abstract, rectangular paintings of Piet Mondrian (1872-1944) used by Parisian designer, Yves Saint Laurent.

  • Middle Eastern and Aztec style geometric patterns were incorporated into late 1960s Bohemian fashion, as sold in London's King's Road fashion boutiques.

  • 1980s Maximalist fashion took inspiration from the bold and abstract art of Pablo Picasso (1881-1973), Wassily Kandinsky (1866-1944) and Paul Klee (1879-1940) and used the patterns in loud and playful garments, from haute-couture to pop music to sporty, casual fashion.





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