Corsets On The Runway
The corset might have seen its beginnings in the Middle Ages, but it has since transcended time in the realm of fashion. From the stiffened linen ‘cottes’ worn by French women in the 1400s to Jean Paul Gaultier’s famous conical one-piece as seen on Madonna during the 1990s, the corset continues to be an emblem of desirability, extremity and sexuality – although critics view it as a symbol of female oppression.
Fast forward to today and it’s no surprise that the garment has found a place in the wardrobes of the Gen-Z style set who fetishises romantic-meets-goth elements in their dressing. It helps too that the brands championing this look come from the school of the dark chic – and not the frou frou or Moulin Rouge strain.
For Spring/Summer 2020, intricate corsets and caged designs popped up at Chloe, Vivienne Westwood, Thierry Mugler and Dion Lee. Paired with suits, shorts and cargo pants, the array underscores the garment’s versatility. For Fall/Winter 2020, the corset steps into a more Gothic territory as seen at brands like Olivier Theyskens, Alexander McQueen and Dilara Findikoglu.
Looking to give the corset a try? We speak to some Gen-Z fans of corsets who vouch for the femininity, power and versatility of this historic, revered and provocative garment.