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Ever evolving Sleepwear

  • 13 December 2018
  • By Shveta Bhagat
  • 0 Comments

From Pajamas to all kinds of funky coordinates, the night wear has come a long way. The night gowns too are no more frumpy but flattering and with-it. The days of matronly Victorian era nightwear has long gone as brands are churning out fashion forward choices that can be worn even outside the bedroom.

Some basic style have stayed through the times, only getting trendier. The English word pajama came to be from the Persian word ‘pyjama’ which denoted a style of loose pants tied at the waist. It is only in the Victorian era that it got popular in the west with men adopting the style that was followed later by women and children as well. The soft and comfortable pajamas are now infact being worn to make a style statement even on the streets with big fashion names like Paul Poiret and Coco Chanel having turned it around. From seamless flannel Pj’s to luxe tartan print ones everyone loves this breathable, cosy all-time wear.

We have certainly come a long way from formless, floor-length, all-white Victorian era sleepwear to modern times where comfort and fashion go hand in hand. Embellishments like lace of course still find their place from time to time. The nightgown of that period has somewhat survived except have got shorter and more stylish, as also softer in fabric. Initially worn by men and women both, they became more common amongst women with course of time.

The night jacket has almost entirely disappeared barring a few designers effort to revive it. A feature of the Victorian times, it was a more formal version of a robe and worn before bed time or after waking up to protect from the cold yet look presentable. Sir Winston Churchill was known to hold morning meetings covered in them.

Pajama sets and negligees entered the scene in the late 1920s. Meant for men mostly, the pajamas were in silk and cotton and all sorts of colours with patterns ranging from stripes to dots, and flannel. Initially made with long sleeves and full legs, shorter versions slowly crept in. It was only when designer Coco Chanel designed a set of sleepwear for women, that it became popular amongst the ladies. Her design of elegant loose silk or cotton pajamas with a matching top for women was first received with shock but later became a rage in the mid 1920s. Ever since there has been no looking back and a lot of innovation underway with regards to women’s pajama suits. Women are even opting for matching pajama shorts and top.

Negligees were designed to resemble the flapper-style clothing that was popular at the time. The first few style were a lot like a nightgown, but in sheer or silk with lace trimming. It began to get shorter and in bolder styles around the 1940s. At present, it has acquired a casual trend with oversized t-shirts or linen robe dresses that can be worn in and out of the bedroom.

The current ‘sleepwear outside the home’ trend is being explored to the hilt and is a pet theme for designers nowadays. Sleep wear has come a long way and even become serious business.

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