Brief History of Christmas Fashion Posted on 15 Dec 12:37
By Nadine Rich
For as long as there have been special occasions, there has been fashion to go along with it. Christmas is no exception, with some - like 'Fashion Santa' above taking it to a whole new level during recent fashion shoots for Toronto's sprawling Yorkdale Shopping Centre. In fact, fashion has played an important role in the development of the modern day holiday - adding to the fun for better or worse in so many of its aspects - think for example those crazy Christmas sweaters. However, it goes without saying that in western society, the most recognizable fashion icon is Santa himself - with his red suit and white fur trim - he's instantly recognizable in an outfit representative of his great warmth and generosity.
The red colour originated from Bishop Saint Nicholas who lived during the fourth century. He was also referred to as Nicholas of Smyrna or Nicholas of Myra. He was depicted as wearing a crimson-coloured robe and was known for his kindness and compassion. He often passed out gifts and gave away his wealth to poor children. Tradition has it that he would actually toss bags of gold through windows and down chimneys.
The red suit we know today was created by the drawings of Thomas Nast for the Harper's Weekly magazine in the late 1800’s. The modern Santa suit was further popularized by Haddon Sundblom’s work for the Coca-Cola company in the early 1900’s. Sundblom’s depiction also set the standard of the jolly, round, bearded man we have come to love and was a much-needed symbol of hope during The Great Depression.
Even apart from religion and legend, however, fashion has impacted the lives of everyday people during the holidays and has changed drastically over the decades. When you look at old family Christmas photos from the past, you will almost always see the entire family dressed up. During times of hardship and financial strain, people looked for a reason to celebrate and look nice. The Christmas holiday gave them that outlet. Today, most people opt to dress casually or even remain in their cozy pajamas to open up the gifts under the tree.
On the other hand, when it comes to office parties or holiday gatherings, Christmas has always served as the perfect excuse to get decked out in our finest attire. Finding the perfect outfit that represents the joy and spirit of Christmas is as old as the holiday itself. Not much has changed in that regard. The glamour, elegance, and even statement jewelry remains a huge part of holiday fashion trends today.
No matter what you choose to wear for unwrapping Christmas gifts, holiday office parties, or any other special gatherings, Henkerman is here to help keep your fine holiday wear looking its best year after year.
Happy Holiday to you and yours, from all of us at Henkerman!
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