Strangest Fashion Trends In History

People have been using fashion as a means of self expression for ages. For some people, it’s all about following all the newest and hottest trends. For others, it’s a way to buck social norms and embrace looks that celebrate their individuality. There are some who wouldn’t be caught dead in something considered “last season”. Yet others hold on to favorite pieces, no matter how old or worn out they may be. One of the main constants in fashion, is change. Some people will do anything to stay on trend when it comes to fashion. To prove our point, we’ve assembled some of the strangest fashion trends in history.


If you love yourself a good platform or wedge shoe, you can look to chopines as their great-great-great grandparents. The chopine was actually birthed out of necessity. Mud was a big problem in medieval Venice. So much so, that these shoes were invented to help ladies traverse the muddy streets without ruining their clothing in the process. Soon, however, the strange shoes would become all the rage in the fashion world among the elite. During the 16th and 17th century, high society women could not get enough of them. The higher the shoe, the more wealthy and important you were considered to be. Function gave way to fashion, and soon the shoes were so high in some cases, that women needed assistance to walk in them for fear of topping over.

Hobble Skirts

Chalk this one up to another one of the strangest fashion trends ever to restrict a woman’s movement. Hobble skirts tapered downward, becoming more and more tight fitting on the way down. The design made it exceptionally difficult for women to walk comfortably, forcing them instead to take short, slow steps. Running? Not an option. Considered highly fashionable in the early 1900’s, the skirts are credited to the French designer Paul Poiret. The garment created a more sleek silhouette, which required a woman to forego the usual tight corset and bulky petticoats beneath. Of his creation, Poiret apparently quipped, “Yes, I freed the bust. But, I shackled the legs!”. Gee, thanks?

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Pinning Down Pinup History- The Pencil Skirt: Up, up, and a wait…was the Wright Brother’s first thoughts when seeing their first female passenger – Mrs. Edith Berg- arrive to ride in their newest invention, an airplane! With all the exposed chains, and gears on their flying machine, one look at Mrs. Berge’s clothing, with its many billowing layers, one could see it was in no way safe to trapeze the sky in! Cue the quick thinking of an engineer, a piece of rope, and a staple piece of a women’s wardrobe was born…to read the rest of the Pencil Skirts history check out my blog post! *Link in the bio!!! • • • *Thank you for your patience while I attempt to fix the link. It should be fixed by tomorrow. All Photos Courtesy of Google Pencil Skirt History Courtesy of #vougemagazine, and Wikipedia. • #1940spinupfashion #classicpinupfashion #pinningdownpinuphistory #historyissexy #womensfashionhistory #historyblogger #fashionhistoryblogger #historygirls #20thcenturywomen #20thcenturywomensfashion #vintagestyle #hobbleskirt #dior #thewrightbrothers #planefashion #travelfashion #vintagetravelfashion #retrostyle #retrofashionstyle #retrofashion #fashioncanbedeadly #20thcenturyfashion #20thcentruyfashionhistory

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Arsenic Dresses

The Victorian era was a dangerous and uncomfortable time to be up on your fashion trends. During this time period, dresses dyed a shade of bottle green were an absolute must-have for special occasions. They were gorgeous, and carried a steep price tag. However, the real cost with these dresses was the price of the wearer’s health. To get that particular shade of green, arsenic was used in the dying process. Yup, these were straight up poisonous dresses. Those who wore them reported of suffering from blisters, wonky vision, and stomach upset. The rarity with which the dresses were worn meant limited contact and exposure to the toxic fabric for Victorian era fashionistas. However, the workers who made and dyed the dresses frequently died from creating them.

The Bullet Bra

There’s not really much to say about this entry in the all time strangest fashion trends in history. Uh, wow, that’s really pointy. Madonna might have brought the cone-looking-bra thing to pop culture in her music videos, but they were also an actual thing during the 1940’s. They promised the wearer “maximum projection” and were considered the must-have undergarment of the time. They were also sometimes called “torpedo” bras. Must have been a very uncomfortable time to get hugged.

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