Etymology of the Term “Fashion” Explained

Fashion is a broad category of dressing, footwear, clothing, accessories, hair style, makeup, and body structure and at a certain time and occasion, in a certain context. The word “fashion” means a style defined by the fashion business as what is fashionable at that time. Trends in fashion often appear and disappear, just as in any other human activity. A trend is something that is repeated or occurs in repetitive forms in many different situations and circumstances. In most cases, a new trend will emerge with an existing trend becoming obsolete or just growing in popularity.


The nineteenth century marked the birth of the fashion business. By the late nineteenth century, clothing for both men and women were no longer simple one-piece garments attached to the upper body. The nineteenth century also witnessed the flowering of haute couture, which in French art, into a much broader field of clothing with an elaborate design and colorful, if not extravagant, embellishments. Haute couture was soon to become one of the most popular categories of fashion among European women. Some of the well known designers during the era of the late nineteenth century were Dior, Balmain, Yves Saint Laurent, Christian Dior, Fath and Chanel.

Throughout the early and mid twentieth century, styles of fashion included work dresses, evening gowns, casual clothing for the working class, skirt for women, and suits for men, among others. The twentieth century brought a variety of fashion movements, with high fashion bringing a focus to the dressmaker, his/her client, and the design process. High fashion began at the start of the 20th century, lasting until the end of the first decade of the new century. It was characterized by a focus on form rather than function, with materials like silk and velvet becoming more common. This movement was typified by dresses, corsets, and gowns that were much shorter in length than before, which helped make it easier to wear a short jacket or a long skirt.

Fashion trends are always changing, taking place in the fashion world according to periods in time, seasons and environments, making it difficult to keep up with what is in and what is out. It can be hard to look for trends that you really like when they’re all being changed so frequently, so instead many people just adapt to the normal trends that happen to be in fashion, looking for fun and different ways to accessorize. However, some of these clothes can be quite uncomfortable to wear at times, due to their bulkiness or the fabric they are made from. In addition, new designs always crop up and old fashions get simplified.

The term “fashion” comes from the Latin phrase “fornax” which means dress or attire. The etymology of the word means dressing in motion, implying that all fashions change with the wind. Another example of eras changes is the popularity of boots during the Roman and Greek empires, which fell out of favor during the rule of kingship. However, when the style returned it was in the form of slippers, which became even more popular during the Renaissance, when they were worn for protection against the cold in the streets of fashionable cities.

There are many reasons that designers, manufacturers and consumers are interested in keeping up with fashion trends. Some of them are practical necessities such as looking better while performing daily tasks or being able to wear casual clothes with business suits. Some people wear clothing simply for the way it makes them feel, a state of comfort known as emotionalism.