Different Fashions – Alternative Fashion Styles

Clothing was always, ever since man started wrapping himself in various animal fur, a statement of a certain kind. Fashion, as a style popularized and excepted by many in modern day, just deepened that statement’s importance. Choosing one style or another gave people in all cultures a way of expressing themselves, and as there was always a fashion followed by majority of society, there was another, somewhere in the back of it, denying and rejecting it.

Alternative fashion styles are tightly close to music genres of what is also labeled as “alternative”, such as rock and roll, punk, gothic, hardcore, and all varieties that rose up from those. Many social and cultural issues are brought up by associating a subculture with a type of music and a way of clothing, such as denying status quo of classes, governmental policies, distribution of power, and identity policy which majority popularized. Identity, in fact, is the most important aspect of alternative fashion and as an embodiment of it, it produced a variety of styles, to show the same variety of opinion, discontent, or rejecting the traditional values which are always transformed in shape but steady in structure in the mainstream fashion.

Reimagining one’s own identity is a process that is followed by changes in personal appearance and usually approaching values of a subculture which offers to individual a better view of society. Those values are mirrored in music, clothes and accessories. Influenced by vintage and retro fashion, dress styles, forms of visual and performance art, personal attitudes towards concepts such as individuality, consumerism, social constructs on behavior, and considerations of availability and utilitarianism, rock and roll and punk had a very strong ground to stand on when social criticizm through clothing became unseparable part of the genres.

Since the 50s and 70s which were the turning point years, rock and roll and punk styles got multiplied by many, and brought us gothic, cyber gothic (and other varieties of gothic fashion which is still one of the strongest alternative movements in creation of new gender roles and identities and social boundaries), industrial (strongly influenced by military uniforms), Beatniks, Metal, Heavy Metal, Glam Metal (and many subgenres of metal music which has their own set of clothing styles), Hippie, Riot grrrl, Lolita, Mod, Ero kawaii (and many, many, many Japanese influenced styles with a strong influence on Western fashion, alternative and mainstream, such as Elegant Gothic Aristocrat), and many more. Individuality is an important part of alternative fashion, but there are always patterns (otherwise we would not call it a fashion), and even punk fashion, as an extreme form of rejecting social system through hairstyle, piercings, ripped clothes etc has a certain structure which can except anyone who wants to join it.

How to Find Fashionable Maternity Clothes

Dreading the search for fashionable maternity clothes? The swollen ankles, sensitive stomach and stretching belly are just a few of the many joys of pregnancy. The effort is worth the result, but it’s usually a bumpy trip. One of many difficult tasks for mothers-to-be is shopping for maternity clothes, which are usually far less chic than regular clothes.

For some reason, the traditional view has been that once a woman is pregnant, she should be covered in cartoon prints, baby-doll-dress replicas or something far too conservative. Bows, lace, high collars and cutesy images seem stacked up as far as the eye can see. But, if you live in the real world, you might want some fashionable maternity clothes instead.

If you take the time to wade through the sea of candy cane lace and shirts only a nun would wear, you’ll find that not all maternity clothes are twenty years behind the times. Even the big name mega stores are starting to add a little style to maternity attire.

The Basics

First, you need to know how to buy maternity clothes in general. Obviously, the stomach of the garment should be loose-fitting and allow room for growth. Any pants or skirts should have elastic stretch panels to fit gently around that growing belly.

Since a pregnant woman’s breasts can be swollen or sensitive, the bust area of any top should fit snugly, but never tightly. Avoid any chest or neckline decorations that might cause chafing or other irritation.

The Styles

Search for styles with a tie or band under the chest to give a visual break between your bosom and your belly. When you glance in the mirror, you won’t see just a big bowling ball with legs.

A popular and timeless look in maternity wear is the simple, flowing sundress. Spaghetti-strap or racerback, any soft cotton dress with an empire waist looks lovely. Print or plain, even hot celebrity moms-to-be are routinely photographed in these types of garments.

However, avoid sack dresses with a loose top and a pleated or gathered skirt. These types of maternity dresses went out of style long ago, especially if they contain a big sunflower in the middle of the collar. Stick to dresses that offer a little more form and shape.

The lifesaving basic black suit works for maternity clothes, too. A scoop neck, short-sleeve black top in a comfortable fabric always looks sharp, especially when paired with matching black pants. Any nicely tailored black outfit tends to appear graceful on the pregnant form.

Another stylish look for any mother-to-be is a short baby-doll dress paired with simple cotton leggings. The outfit works with any style or color. It’s perfect for pregnant women who are barely showing and as maternity clothes for plus-size or petite mothers-to-be. It’s a little bit sweet, a little bit sexy and another celebrity favorite.

A clever way to offset that casual feel of loose-belly maternity wear is to utilize classic tailoring. A maternity business blouse should have a crisp collar and cuffs. This balances out the soft lines of the torso and maintains a professional feel.

If you’re looking for something a little more relaxed, don’t settle for a plain T-shirt. Many comfortable, cotton shirts come in fun styles and cuts. Try a mock wraparound shirt for a relaxed, yet classy appearance. Smock waist and baby-doll T-shirts also provide tummy room without sacrificing style.

Be careful with stripe patterns. Strong stripes, like bold black and white, can look distorted when laid over a baby bump. These can make you look more like an optical illusion than a chic mother-to-be. A good way to handle this problem is to remember that the closer the stripes are spaced, the closer in color they should be.

The Everyday Needs

Just because you’re pregnant doesn’t mean you’ve stopped living a busy life. Remember, maternity clothes come in every category you need. Activewear, swimsuits and pajamas can be found in most maternity departments.

Activewear doesn’t automatically mean sweats, so drop that drab old suit. Assorted hoodies with matching pants keep you chic and ready to work out. Drawstring waists with wide leg pants are considered fashionable, as opposed to the traditional gathered cuff on sweat pants.

Don’t limit yourself to just pants, though. Maternity activewear can mean comfy pants or shorts. Pregnant women who do yoga can find stretchy full-body suits. Cute, matching stretch pants with long T-shirts also look good as activewear.

Swimsuits still come in the old-fashioned skirt and top style, which is a maternity mainstay. These can look trendy, but only if they’re not covered with cute kittens in every color in the rainbow. Luckily, you can branch out from this boring look.

A plain maternity swimsuit with a matching sarong or beach coat is always a cool look. Even maternity bikinis are available for the more daring soon-to-be mother. For a more demure maternity approach, tankinis with swimsuit shorts and matching tees can also be found.

Sleepwear options include negligees and pajamas. Cute shorts and tank tops, similar to the ones you’ll find in activewear, can be both a comfortable and fashionable look. Silky nightgowns with delicate lace trimming are always fashionable, and they can help you feel more feminine despite pregnancy bloating.