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The Coatdress: Its Aesthetics and Its Current Rareness


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#55 SPOOKIETOO

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Posted 13 October 2015 - 10:53 PM

The more columnar the figure, the easier it is to fit a coat dress.

I'm certain this is one reason coat dresses are so rare in RTW.

I had a very hour glass figure in the 80's. The one coatdress I attepted to make then was the only garment I completely gave up on due to fit issues. I think I could pull it off now, I just didn't have the necessary skills and understanding back then.

Of course, the body I have now is very columnar...fit wouldn't be as much of an issue.
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#56 tailleuse

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Posted 14 October 2015 - 12:20 AM

The pictures in the paper of the forbidden dresses were just ordinary dresses. When I was in school that is what the lady teachers wore, not to mention the girls. That is what they had to wear. The pants suit hadn't been invented yet, or teachers weren't allowed to wear them yet. Besides, the jeans girls wear nowadays are far more exciting. The women today, making decisions, weren't around to know what decency was in the past, as they have proven, and actually are pushing the opposite of the past. Besides, girls and women wear far less at the beach and public swimming pools. Required clothes for girls gymnastics and guys tights for wrestling all parts of the school programs, not to mention swimming competitions. If theses gals were dressing up like hookers that would be entirely different.

Contortionist. Some of the clothing today certainly look like they fit that description.

 

I was talking about leggings, jeggings, yoga pants and low-slung pants that have been prohibited by some schools. I was in elementary school when the rules changed and girls were finally allowed to wear pants, so I know the era.  Any article of clothing can be made sexy if you wear it tight, short or translucent enough.  I understand the impulse for women to push boundaries, I lived in the period when many women eschewed bras, but I disagree that extreme, hypersexual dress is the only way to assert one's freedom.  It's like people who justify vulgar and worse statements by arguing their right to freedom of speech -- exercising the judgment and restraint not to needlessly offend people is a good use of freedom as well.

 

Street clothing is different from swimwear and gym wear: different needs because of the context and thus different rules.


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#57 tailleuse

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Posted 21 October 2015 - 11:47 PM

Here's a more contemporary take on the coatdress by DKNY. Notably, it's softer.

 

22.nocrop.w1800.h1330.2x.jpg


Edited by tailleuse, 21 October 2015 - 11:49 PM.

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#58 Testudo_Aubreii

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Posted 27 January 2016 - 03:43 AM

 

It's pretty, but it looks like a coat and is rather stiff.  The American businesswomen and professionals I know who have to dress somewhat formally and have the money to buy nicer clothes usually don't dress like this.  They like comfortable separates made out of luxurious fabrics, or sheath dresses, which can be paired with a jacket or a nice cardigan.

 

Don't forget: Americans in formal environments who make really good money tend to have really long hours: 10- 12-hour days, even all-nighters. Clothing that is layered, can be removed as needed, is breathable, and doesn't wrinkle easily is preferred.

 

Well, sure:  they don't dress like this. The question is whether that is regrettable. I'm saying that it's regrettable that the coat dress is not a live option for those US women you speak of. I take your point that such a garment wouldn't be ideal for a 12-hour workday. But women--especially women with money--don't only buy clothes for 12-hour workdays. They also buy clothes for ceremonial occasions, festive occasions, formal occasions, etc. Indeed, they buy such clothes in enormous quantities: they wear them once and then donate them or throw them away. What I'm asking is why don't we see more coat dresses at weddings, funerals, church services, state occasions, public lectures, evening receptions, etc. I think they look quite good on such occasions, as the photos from Catherine Walker and of Duchess Kate and Camilla attest.



#59 Testudo_Aubreii

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Posted 27 January 2016 - 03:44 AM

I am planning on making a coat dress Marfy pattern 3508. I always loved coatdresses but never owned one...attachicon.gif3508_2.jpg

 

Wonderful! Please keep us posted on how it turns out.



#60 tailleuse

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Posted 27 January 2016 - 08:10 AM

Well, sure:  they don't dress like this. The question is whether that is regrettable. I'm saying that it's regrettable that the coat dress is not a live option for those US women you speak of. I take your point that such a garment wouldn't be ideal for a 12-hour workday. But women--especially women with money--don't only buy clothes for 12-hour workdays. They also buy clothes for ceremonial occasions, festive occasions, formal occasions, etc. Indeed, they buy such clothes in enormous quantities: they wear them once and then donate them or throw them away. What I'm asking is why don't we see more coat dresses at weddings, funerals, church services, state occasions, public lectures, evening receptions, etc. I think they look quite good on such occasions, as the photos from Catherine Walker and of Duchess Kate and Camilla attest.


Admittedly, I don't hang with the Ladies Who Lunch (also formerly known as "Social X-rays" because they were so rail thin in order to look good in their designer clothes), but my impression is all social classes in the United States today tend to dress more casually. A wealthy woman might spend a lot of money on a daytime outfit, but it's more likely to be a $700 cashmere sweater with perfectly fitting pants than a coatdress. Coatdresses are in an odd category: not as casual as pants or easy dresses, not as formal as suits. And even more formal sheath dresses are more versatile: You can dress them up and down with scarves, necklaces and sweaters. A coatdress is always a coatdress.

Dignity. Always, dignity. (Singin' in the Rain)


#61 Testudo_Aubreii

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Posted 29 January 2016 - 03:54 AM

Admittedly, I don't hang with the Ladies Who Lunch (also formerly known as "Social X-rays" because they were so rail thin in order to look good in their designer clothes), but my impression is all social classes in the United States today tend to dress more casually. A wealthy woman might spend a lot of money on a daytime outfit, but it's more likely to be a $700 cashmere sweater with perfectly fitting pants than a coatdress. Coatdresses are in an odd category: not as casual as pants or easy dresses, not as formal as suits. And even more formal sheath dresses are more versatile: You can dress them up and down with scarves, necklaces and sweaters. A coatdress is always a coatdress.

Thanks, tailleuse. What I'm trying to figure out is: Why is the wealthy woman more likely to buy a 700 USD sweater and a pair of pants than a coatdress? You say that part of the reason for their non-existence is that they're not as formal as suits, but more formal than pants and easy dresses. But if so, and if the US is getting more casual, then why are so many suits being sold right now and so few coatdresses?


Edited by Testudo_Aubreii, 29 January 2016 - 03:54 AM.

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#62 tailleuse

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Posted 29 January 2016 - 08:47 AM

Thanks, tailleuse. What I'm trying to figure out is: Why is the wealthy woman more likely to buy a 700 USD sweater and a pair of pants than a coatdress?


Comfort is the new luxury. It's not just wealthy women who believe this. Look at the billionaire Internet mogul who wears jeans and flip flops to the office. There's also an element of reverse snobbery.

You say that part of the reason for their non-existence is that they're not as formal as suits, but more formal than pants and easy dresses. But if so, and if the US is getting more casual, then why are so many suits being sold right now and so few coatdresses?


I'm just guessing, but there are a few professions and some situations in which suits are required, so women wear a suit. In addition, even a formal suit is more versatile than a coatdress. For example, you could wear the skirt or trousers with a sweater and necklace instead of the jacket.

Dignity. Always, dignity. (Singin' in the Rain)





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