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Dress Fabrics for Black Tie

At this time of year many of our customers are not only thinking about their Christmas Day outfit but also what they may wear for their New Years Eve celebrations. New Years Eve is of course one of the biggest party nights of the year and however you celebrate at the stroke of midnight, whether you are attending a big organised event or celebrating at home with your closest family and friends, you will surely already have given a lot of thought to the perfect outfit and Dress Fabrics. For many, New Year celebrations are a relaxed event however there is always the opportunity to ring in the brand new year at a more formal occasion such as a company event and for most events of this scale black tie is likely to be the expected dress code. For most of us, going to a black tie celebration is not something we do on a regular basis and navigating the line between smart dress and true black tie attire can be difficult.

The origins of formal black tie dress dates way back to the 19th century, black tie is a less formal style of dress that white tie but is still smarter than smart casual or business wear and is a dress code often applied to dinners or other formal gatherings taking place after 6pm. Classic black tie attire is recognised as a black tuxedo and bow tie for mean and an elegant evening gown for ladies crafted from the highest quality Dress Fabrics. Although black tie is still considered to be one of the most decorous styles of dress, in recent years many have moved away from the traditional, stiff formality of black tie - gone are the days of men being obliged to wear a bow tie and cummerbund and women have followed silt by relaxing the rules and experimenting with shortened hem lines and trendier clotting items such as jumpsuits rather than a traditional evening gown.

black-tie Black tie dress in the 1920s was not much different todays style.

Black tie was a popular style of dress during the roaring twenties and was often worn for a night out at the opera, weddings and formal dinners. 1920s black tie formal wear kept the traditional top hat and tailcoat that was popular during the previous decade as well as the dinner jacket, now referred to as a tuxedo coat. From the 1920s to the end of World War 2, tailcoats were the preferred style of dress for gentleman and were almost always worn with a waistcoat and tie similar to the style preferred by the superstars of the day such as Frank Sinatra. Generally, evening wear favoured by gentleman at this time would consist of a tuxedo in black or midnight blue Dress Fabric in the single breasted style. During the late 1920s many men had begun to substitute the cummerbund for a waistcoat and styles began to reflect those similar to today's fashions. For ladies, the popular silhouette of the 1920s was straight and angular designed to achieve the boyish figure that was the ideal of the day. During the early part of the century skirts skirts were still worn to almost ankle length and it was not until approximately 1924 that skirts reached the mid calf height for evening wear, a style which is synonymous with this particularly stylish decade. Towards the end of the decade, the fashion for uneven hemlines was all the range which led again to an increase in the lengthening of the ideal 1920s hemline. Evening dresses during this period were generally sleeveless and featured a V or U-shaped neckline. Dress Fabrics of the 1920s were delicate and airy with cotton and silk being the ideal for ladies black tie attire.

Ironically, the era of the Great Depression is widely acknowledged to have been the greatest chapter in history for evening wear. Hoping to emulate the silver-screen elegance synonymous with this time, the average man would spend what he could afford on attiring himself in the best quality evening wear available, such was the desire for inexpensive escapism from the drudgery of every day life. It was during this period that ready-to-wear tuxedos first became available and the popularity of renting one's evening wear began to take off. During this period Dress Fabrics became softer and less starched resulting in evening wear that was on the whole much comfier to wear that the stiff heavy cotton that had been popular up to this point.

kate Catherine Middleton has perfected her black tie style.

Black tie fashion has continued to evolve over the preceding years and with advances in manufacturing is a style of dress attainable for all in society regardless of wealth or status. Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge has perfected the art of black tie fashion. As a regular at black tie events for charities and prestigious awards ceremonies, HRH has access to the latest designs from the world's biggest fashion houses who are all clamouring to dress her for the red carpets and has worn so many beautiful and elegant designs it is difficult to choose only one as the perfect example of black tie attire. It is widely acknowledged that one of Catherine's favourite fashions houses is McQueen. Catherine has stepped out in a number of stunning McQueen pieces over the years, including the iconic Sarah Burton design she wore for her 2011 marriage ceremony to Prince William. A big supporter of the armed forces, Catherine is a regular attendee at the Sun Military Awards and in the same year as she tied the knot with Prince William she walked the red carpet at this event in another McQueen design. The beautiful design was in the classic strapless silhouette and was sewn from a luxurious velvet Dress Fabric featuring a trim around the bust and a fishtail skirt. Catherine paired this classic black tie design with her trademark loose curls and chunky diamond accessories for a masterclass in understated elegance.

Of course, every elegant lady needs a handsome companion to complete her ensemble. Luckily for the gentleman in our lives their outfits are somewhat simpler to pull together and are often kept in a gentleman's wardrobe for many years, saved for his most elegant of occasions. One of the most important aspects of a gentleman's black tie attire is his crisp white shirt - gentlemen can choose from a number of collar options depending upon the occasion and of course his preferred style of dress. The design most favoured at a black tie event is the classic wide spread collar; designed to site behind the jackets lapels this is a classic, smart and elegant look suitable for gentleman of all ages. For the more adventurous and more style conscious man, the pleated front shirt is an excellent option whilst a plain front shirt will also achieve a simple and elegant style suitable for any formal occasion. Poplin is the perfect choice of Dress Fabric for mens shirts and it is from this fabric that most luxury ready to wear shirts are manufactured. Shirts created from this Dress Fabric are often in the upper price bracket due to its long lasting and comfortable to wear quality.

If you are not a fan of classic black tie and prefer to be a little more adventurous with your attire, look to celebrities such as Lupita Nyong'o. One of the most talked about style icons of recent years Lupita is known for her impeccable sense of style and her knack for pushing the boundaries of red carpet style whilst still managing to maintain a suitable sense of occasion. If you are not a fan of classic black dresses, it is possible to inject a touch of colour to your black tie attire just as Lupita did at the 2014 BAFTAS. Amid the swathes of female celebrities in varying designs of the black gown, Lupita was resplendent in a gorgeous fishtail gown by Christian Dior in a stunning emerald satin Dress Fabric. Featuring a simple gold band to accentuate her hourglass shape, Lupita kept her accessories to a minimum and proved that black tie dress does not necessarily have to mean black.

For women in particular, the options for black tie occasions are endless and our collection of stunning Dress Fabrics are all you will need to create your perfect evening gown.