Ever since economist George Taylor concocted the Hemline Index in 1926 there has been much debate over skirt lengths reflecting the state of the economy. Taylor’s theory suggests that hemlines rise when financial markets are good and can rapidly fall when they are poor. Apply this theory to the S/S 2010 collections and it appears designers are very optimistic indeed. From Prada in Milan to Karl Lagerfeld in Paris time to get your pins in gear as hemlines will be short, short, short come spring. How’s that for a dose of optimism? Forget all those mutterings of ‘minimal’ and ‘pared down’ when the credit crunch first hit, designers are blinging up the new season by piling on the embellishment and slashing hemlines to sky-high proportions.
Of course there is also talk of a somewhat influential Lady GaGa kick-starting the trend with her large knickers worn as outerwear antics. Loved and loathed for her style in equal measure Lady GaGa has been credited for boosting knicker sales across the UK. And while most of us might give the knickers worn as hotpants look a miss the general gist is a shift towards a higher hemline.
Back to Paris and the latest batch of shows, and it is perhaps apt that another pivotal trend coming through is lingerie. Jean Paul Gaultier referenced his iconic cone bras of yesteryear while transparent slips, corsetry and feminine lace-trims featured through-out the Christian Dior show. Elsewhere off the catwalk the fashion pack seem determined to stick two-fingers up to the recession by donning sequins, heavy duty jewellery and impossibly high-heels.