Everybody knows flamenco dresses, which are related to Andalusian culture. Nowadays they can be showed on typical events and are a part of each of Andalusia’s traditions. But, the origins of flamenco dresses were far away from dancing, singing and having fun. It is quite possible that you can’t imagine were the origins of flamenco dresses are, can you?
The origins of flamenco dress: from low-class countrywomen to the symbol of a region
The origins of the typical Andalusian dress are joined to different cultures that brought their dresses by different ways to Andalusia. But to find the origins of flamenco dresses ( gypsy´s dress ) in Spain we have to move from fairs and events, to the Andalusian countryside, where countrywomen and gypsy women used to wear basic dresses, often with ruffles, many years ago. They also wore an apron as they worked hard both home and gardening.
They spent most of their time working on the countryside, but their lives were not just house and garden, as peasants and gypsy women used to move to the nearby towns when there were cattle fairs or markets from time to time to make deals. Often countrywomen joined their husband in these events so the original dresses could be admired by the rest of women.
They could be humble dresses, but they were also flattering, so wealthier women adapted the style of the dresses to their position by using more expensive tissues to tailor them. After some years, there were not differences and every woman wore a gypsy dress, so they become an essential part on each Andalusian event, mostly fairs.
As the purchase power of women who wore those dresses increased, the costume was completed with necklaces, earrings or hair combs. That contrasted with humble women, who used to complete their style by adding flowers on their hair. Nowadays, both bijoux and flowers are accepted.
From countryside fairs to the international catwalk
At the beginning of the XX century, flamenco dresses were popular and it was easy to see them on every fair and event. But it was more than traditional or regional clothes and the
Exposición Iberoamericana de Sevilla shown that it could fight for its own place on the catwalk.
Not just because it is flattering, but because it could also be renewed every year without changing it basic charm: prints, tissues, colours can be changed on a flamenco dress, but it can be always recognized as a “Traditional Spanish dress”.
The original popular dress arrived from the countryside to the catwalk, and some of the best fashion designed got inspired but the movement of the ruffles and the style of the dresses. Even, there are many designers that have created high couture flamenco dresses collections.
Same dress, different women
As XX century went by, conventionality on women clothes changed: pronounced cleavage, shorter skirts, bright colours or transparencies were adopted on women closets. They wanted to look modern and sexier.
Flamenco dresses added those innovations too to adapt the trends on each generation. Now there are also many catwalks dedicated to show the last trends on Spanish dresses every season.
Flattering, but comfortable to wear it with charm
But it is not the kind of costume that is just flattering, as it is related to Andalusian culture, an Andalusian dress is expected to be shown on fairs, markets or pilgrimages, but it could be also be a flamenco dress.
So the perfect flamenco dress should be comfortable to wear according to its use. In fact, the best way to acquire such a costume is by considering the reasons to buy it, as the destination of the dress is an essential point and it is related to the way the women is going to wear it.
After all, it is a costume that allows woman to feel seductive.