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History Inspired Fashions for Spring

As the cold winter weather disappears and the hope of summer blooms, the history enthusiast can display her love of vintage styles without breaking her fashion budget! First on our list, we observe the continued popularity of Capri pants. Capri pants are slim-fitting, calf-length pants, similar to "pedal pushers" or bicycle pants worn by women in the 1950s. They were named after the Isle of Capri, an island off the coast of Italy, which was the birthplace of many popular fashion trends during the post-World War II era.

Capri pants can be worn with ruffled blouses reminiscent of the Renaissance era. 'Tis true! Ruffles are back in style, and we have seen them adorning blouse sleeves, collars and dress hems for a few seasons already. Inspired by the Renaissance poet blouses and flowing chemises of that era, any garment edged with ruffles adds a sense of lyrical flair to your look, especially for the warmer months! Wear a ruffled blouse over a pair of Capri pants, add a vintage-style hat with pretty Spring blossoms or an Edwardian butterfly necklace and voila! You'll be the talk of the town in your modern vintage-style outfit!

Finally, we would like to suggest a truly romantic look for your special spring events. Ladies in the late Victorian and Edwardian eras often wore gorgeous white dresses made of lawn or cotton material. They were called "lingerie dresses" even though they were meant to be worn outside and not as sleepwear. These dresses were lightweight, and elaborately embroidered or trimmed with cutwork and lace. Because they were often very sheer, they required a matching underdress to be worn underneath. Lingerie dresses have such a romantic air about them, and their understated elegance are perfect for a summertime tea party, ice cream social, or church picnic. You can find similar dresses at vintage clothiers. The cost depends on the age and condition of the piece. If you plan on purchasing a vintage piece, make sure to check for holes, tears, and stains, especially around the hems. It is generally less expensive and more practical to wear a modern version of such a dress. You can also sew one for yourself, or have one specially made. Eyelet or machine-embroidered cotton fabrics are appropriate, given the extensive amount of embroidery, lace and cutwork applied to the original versions of these dresses.