In the Bible, the moment when Adam and Eve become recognizably human is the moment when, having eaten the forbidden fruit and lost their cosmic innocence, they realize they are naked. Suddenly, Eve emerges as the world's first purchaser of cheap wholesale women's clothing from the closeout rack in the Garden of Eden's fig-leaf department, and human life as we know it begins. Similarly, the moment when children start to emerge from infancy and into the complexities of the social world is, perhaps, the very same moment they suddenly realize that clothes are about much more than protecting us from the elements.
And, probably for enough reasons to fill a thousand libraries, at a certain age, regardless of gender or orientation, we all realize that women's clothing is a lot more interesting than menswear. How excited can you really get about the variations of the width of lapels and ties (for the few men left still wearing jackets and ties, that is), or the various styles of Levi's jeans or golf shirts?
We all learn in school how in many animals, from collies to peacocks, it's often the male of the species who wears the more striking adornment. But whether it's the Oscars or the Correspondent's Ball, it's the female celebrities' clothing that garners ninety-five percent of the attention. The phrase "Who are you wearing?" sounds downright bizarre to many men, but the thinking behind that now-ubiquitous pre-award show question, goes deep. Especially for women, designers really can have a profound influence on daily life.
That was why a clothing designer like Coco Chanel could become one of the world's most celebrated and controversial figures simply by being a major force in fashion from the 1920s through the 1950s and beyond. Her designs abandoned the uncomfortable and over-ornate tropes that seemed to keep women "in their place." Her use of comfortable clothing, some of it inspired by menswear, prefigured both the 1960's sexual revolution and the feminist movement that followed. As Madame Chanel herself said, "I gave women a sense of freedom; I gave them back their bodies?."
Over time, her influence could be seen at every seller of wholesale women's clothing and even at sellers of cheap closeouts. By the late fifties, despite some potentially damning wartime scandals, her innovations had become commonplace well beyond the world of haute couture and Chanel was one of the world's best-known name brands. By this time, not only were women permitted to smoke and drink in public, it was practically demanded of them?for a time, anyhow.
Of course, Ms. Chanel was just one of a number of designers whose impact trickled down into the everyday world of women's clothing and is just one of the factors influencing fashions. Television and, of course, movies, rank high in this area. Faye Dunaway's attractively tomboyish attire in 1967's Bonnie and Clyde boosted the sales of berets and rescued the long skirt. And it looks like J.J. Abrams' cinematic reboot of the Star Trek franchise might move the impact of Trek where no science fiction phenomenon has gone before ? from nerdville to fashion central.
Still, when you get right down to it, from whatever's on tap in wholesale women's clothing or bargain closeouts, to the latest from Vera Wang or Jean Paul Gaultier, or the fuss being made over our First Lady's "right to bare arms," you can't separate fashion from history. Women's clothing is about much more than beauty and display, it's political. Men's clothing is pants and a shirt.
This article has been written by Marc Joseph. An expert in finding good deals, Marc Joseph has also written articles on how to save money by buying items in bulk, which includes wholesale women's clothing.
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