Each decade has its own mood, when we look back on the fashion trends that defined it.
When we think of the 1980s fashions we remember padded shoulders, bright colours, gold and glitz, Princess Di and Maggie Thatcher! The 1960s were flower power and mini skirts, new freedoms for the young, think Twiggy, Lulu and The Beatles. Go back to the 1950s and women’s fashion themes were drawn from glamorous Hollywood and the stars of the silver screen: Grace Kelly, Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor.
The new Millenium has seen a huge rise in women’s passion for handbags, this time carrying young women along with the enthusiasm too, with designer bags becoming coveted status symbols and handbag collections becoming de rigueur for any woman of style. Big bags, re-emerged as a fashion trend in response to the growing amount of things women need to carry with them today, rushing between work, business and leisure activities with all the technological gadgets they need to lug with them, Macbook or laptop, iphone and iPod.
If you follow the evolution of handbag style, going hand in hand with mainstream fashion, through the twentieth and twenty first centuries, you start to see patterns. As the role of women in society has evolved, the handbag has evolved and adapted to their changing needs.
Dips in the global economy are reflected by more practical, restrained handbag styles, boom periods by expansive extravagance.
Fashion trends do seem inextricably linked to the global economy and a pattern has emerged through the decades of the last century.
A time of recession and financial crisis results in more practical and restrained, classic styling, whereas a boom sets flamboyance free in women’s fashion, for fancy dress fashion trends and elaborately glitzy and whimsical extravagance.
Heel heights grow during Recession