About Modern Vietnamese Female Costumes

Clothing is understood as covering or clothing, accessories for the human body. In addition to basic functions such as keeping warm and protecting the body, modern costumes also help identify the wearer in a number of factors such as gender, age, occupation, personality and contribute to making the wearer attractive.

In modern society, clothing not only shows the aesthetic concept, lifestyle, and level of a group of people or an individual, but also shows the cultural characteristics of a community. The cultural feature here is the preserved tradition combined with the absorption of elements of modern fashion and the term “modern clothing” is used to distinguish it from “traditional clothing”. It can be said that modern clothing is one of the existing products that represent the perception and aesthetic tastes of a community and is formed from many factors such as natural conditions and social environment. Humanities. Costumes are also formed from the characteristics of work, gender and today, costumes also express the need to express human personality.

The appearance of modern women’s clothing in the world

Modern womenswear emerged with the broader participation of women in the workforce during the explosive industrial revolution of the late 18th to early 19th centuries. Businesses began to take in. More and more female workers are entering the field of production activities, the work of women has undergone many changes in accordance with the new society. Women’s change to a more active life is evident in the way they dress. Modern wear is marked by simple, lightweight clothing such as skirts becoming shorter than in the past and blouses, waist shirts worn with loose skirts being widely accepted. Subsequent modern costumes gradually moved towards a soft and flexible trend, especially due to the influence of World War I (1914), women’s clothes were also less sophisticated. They are monochromatic, have simple cuts and are short enough for ease of movement and work.

In the decades that followed, women’s clothing design gradually oriented towards freeing the body from baggy clothes and appeared more and more low-waist skirts with slightly flared or loose bottoms, dotted with fringes or knee lace; Long pants or dresses designed with waist, round shoulders, mid-length.

In the 60s and 70s of the 20th century, the women’s feminist movement spread to many places in the West, broke down the barriers in conception from within the family to the society, broadening the fields of employment. There are many opportunities to choose the job you want

  1. The image of a woman is known for a woman who is free, confident in her sexuality and self-efficacy. Accompanying that is the appearance of many outfits that tend to break the old thinking in the previous design with many new styles such as thigh-high skirts, outfits including short sleeves, casual pants with flared skirt. At this time, women are more comfortable expressing their ego through clothes in a way that hugs the body more tightly, even flared pants, jeans, t-shirts, sneakers
  2. Sweatshirts are popular in women’s clothing choices in the early 1970s. To this day, women’s outfits come in a variety of styles, changing with the seasons and each year with a new expression trend.

The appearance of modern costumes in Vietnam

The concept of modern clothing in Vietnam was only coined in the early years of the 20th century. At that time, Vietnamese society was in a semi-colonial, semi-feudal period with many profound economic changes. political, cultural, social. During this period, many suits were introduced to suit the urban lifestyle, along with a number of traditional costumes that were also innovated. The most typical example of this trend is the modern ao dai in the 30s and 40s of the 20th century. It is a form of women’s clothing that has been improved from traditional clothes such as the four-body shirt and five-body shirt, with a change of front and back flaps or wear with satin pants and high heels. Along with that is round neck shirt, casual pants have also begun to appear.

On March 20, 1947, in the work  New Life, Ho Chi Minh, under the pen name Tan Sinh, wrote an article to encourage people to give up the habit of wearing ao dai to replace it with a short shirt because they wear ao dai to walk, work, or work to avoid inconvenience and sloppiness. Ao dai costs fabric, about two dresses can make three short shirts, if you only wear short dresses, you can save 200 million VND/year. Ao Dai is not suitable for Vietnamese women in a new life. At this time, women’s working clothes were gradually replaced by brown blouses, in the direction of the body being sewn closer to the waist, the bodice curled around, the neck was round, wearing a sleeveless bra, black jeans but still wearing it. crow beak square scarf. This type of costume was neat, strong, and convenient in production labor in a new way and suitable for the social context at that time.

Along with the general movement of society through each period, women’s costumes also have many changes to suit different situations and jobs, but still retain traditional elements and are associated with regional characteristics. domain. Costumes of women working in State agencies usually wear long-sleeved shirts with long sleeves, a swan-shaped neck with khaki material in blue, gray or pink beige. The sports hats, clogs or hair ties were replaced by hairpins, head scarves, canvas shoes or black rubber sandals… The daily routine of women in this period also included innovative dresses and skirts along with brown blouse, ba ba shirt, cleavage shirt with many neck styles such as heart shape, spoon neck, square neck; the shoulders of the shirt also have many designs such as shoulder-shoulder, cross-shoulder, etc. There are also open-cut blouses or butterfly and bat wings.

It was not until the late 20th century that women’s costumes paid attention to each individual’s physique in the direction of honoring the beauty of women. This is also consistent with the social context that has been opening up in many aspects, both economically and culturally. Modern dresses have begun to appear on the street a lot and women choose their outfits from a personal point of view. The later integration process also creates fashion trends in different styles in the world, leading to a conflict in the perception of beauty between tradition and modernity.

Through research, it is easy to see that the modern costumes of Vietnamese women in the early stages tend to be simple, favoring deep and soft colors to create a sense of lightness and harmony with the landscape around. Women’s costumes also do not show class distinctions or carry too many social functions, on each female costume clearly shows the functional and aesthetic use. Social factors appearing on costumes only appear in a certain period but do not leave too many obvious marks in the development process of women’s costumes. The development of modern women’s clothing in Vietnam also partly follows the general trend of the world, when traditional costumes are gradually replaced by modern ones suitable for the general development of society as well as modern costumes such as working conditions, working in new ways.

However, also due to the specific conditions of Vietnam, the development of women’s costumes also has its own characteristics, that is, the similarity and unity of the choice of costumes for a long time and this is suitable for women, appropriate in the social context of the 50s to 70s of the last century, when the whole country was in the process of reunifying the country and building socialism. After this period, the country was isolated and embargoed in many aspects, so the clothes of the people in general did not change much. It was only when the country reformed (1986) that changes in many aspects such as labor export and wider trade with other countries brought about a wave of open cultural exchanges and a variety of costumes and styles. Dresses were quickly introduced into our country, the most typical of which can be mentioned is the change of wedding dresses, or many evening dresses according to European trends. Along with that are generations of well-trained fashion designers who bring new nuances when combining modern and ethnic elements in their outfits.

Thus, the development of modern women’s clothing has many changes through different periods with its own characteristics. Along with the evolution of the fashion wave imported from the outside, the modern Vietnamese women’s clothing has had a transformation when it is suitable with the reality of the new lifestyle, as well as being diverse and rich without losing sight of it. own values. That is the logical development path of Vietnamese costumes from traditional to modern in the process of integration.

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