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The importance of clothes transcends cultures, time and geographies. No matter

whether we are talking about the present or the past . what we wear on our bodies
has meaning. Our clothes indicate who we are as individuals as well as a society.
Indeed, some anthropologists refer to clothes as �the social skin.�Clothes are a
means of expressing our individuality (whether we are formal or serious, whether we
are cheeky or a bit �too much�). When lots of people express their individualities,
diversity arises; a diversity we all know keeps life alive for us.

*Day Clothes about 1050

This man and woman (left) date from about 1050, just before the Norman Conquest in
1066. They wear the basic medieval garments: a tunic, probably of wool, slightly
fitted with a high neck and long sleeves, usually worn over a linen shirt.

The lady�s tunic, similar to the man�s but longer, has a semi-circular mantle
fastening on the shoulder. The lady covers her long hair with a hood held by a
band, and carries a travelling pouch; the man wears loose hose and leather shoes.

The Anglo Saxons were known for their skill in embroidery and braid weaving, like
that trimming the man�s tunic.

* Clothes about 1250

By 1250 men�s and women�s tunics were cut with a wide upper sleeve. Most men,
except the elderly, preferred tunics short. Cloaks were usually held by a cord at
the shoulder. A variety of loose over-gowns were also popular, and these had
sleeves with two openings, allowing them to hang loosely like the university gowns
based on them and still seen today.The woman�s plaits are coiled in a bun at each
ear sometimes covered with a net, and the flat headband is kept in place by a veil
or �wimpole� drawn closely under the chin.

*Day clothes about 1300

The young man (left) is wearing a shorter tunic and pointed shoes. These shoes were
characteristic of the 14th century and were called crackowes or poulaines, and are
believed to have derived from Poland. The length of the toe was said to indicate
the rank of the wearer and became more and more exaggerated by the end of the 14th

* Man's and women's clothes about 1490

This lady (left) of about 1490 wears a rich gown of thick material brocaded with
gold. This line foreshadows the severe styles of the court of the early Tudors,
with a low waist and high neckline. Her skirt has a train but is pinned up at the
back for convenience when walking and to show off the fur lining. Her sleeves are
in a new fashion, funnel shaped, and faced with fur.

She wears a hood, with cape dangling like a curtain, front turned up and stiffened,
and worn over a wired and jewelled undercap almost concealing her scraped back
hair. Her shoes have very broad toes. Materials are rich and heavy, many imported
from Flanders and Italy.

This young man wears clothes in the �Italian Fashion�, much less enveloping than
those those of his lady above. His doublet reaches only to his waist and is very
tight, with slits on the chest and sleeves giving room to move and an opportunity
for his fine shirt to be seen. His hose are tied to the waist with �points� (laces)
and and fasten in the front with a �cod piece� (flap). For riding he wears
protective leather stockings, and his shoes have broad toes. This style replaced
peaked shoes in around 1480.

His short loose gown with long hanging sleeves is cut to hang open and show the
contrasting facings. His hair is shoulder length and his flat hat has a jewelled

This gentleman (pictured left) wears a padded doublet with pointed waist and short
padded breeches, with tapering �canion� at the knee, over which the stocking is
pulled. His �Spanish� cloak is heavily embroidered. Possibly Sir Walter Raleigh
threw down a similar one to protect Queen Elizabeth from the mud!

He wears a starched and gathered ruff, developed from the shirt neck frill after
about 1560. His jewellery includes the collar of the Order of the Garter. His hat
would have been conical.

* Man�s and Women Clothes about 1600

This gentleman wears a padded doublet with pointed waist and short padded breeches,
with tapering �canion� at the knee, over which the stocking is pulled. His
�Spanish� cloak is heavily embroidered. Possibly Sir Walter Raleigh threw down a
similar one to protect Queen Elizabeth from the mud. He wears a starched and
gathered ruff, developed from the shirt neck frill after about 1560. His jewellery
includes the collar of the Order of the Garter. His hat would have been conical.
This lady shows the dress which first appeared in the later portraits of Queen
Elizabeth about 1580 and remained fashionable in the reign of James I. The bodice
is very long, pointed and stiff, and the wide skirt is supported by hip �boulsters�
of the �drum farthingale�. The sleeves are wide and the neckline low, with ruff
open to frame the face. It is trimmed with lace newly introduced from Flanders and
Spain. Her pleated fan is a new fashion from China. Fashionable ladies no longer
wore a cap and her uncovered hair is dressed high with ribbons and feathers.

* Lady�s Day dress about 1634

This lady wears a soft satin walking dress with the short waist and full flowing
skirt fashionable from around 1620. Her bodice is cut almost like a man�s doublet
and equally masculine are her wide-plumed hat and long �lovelock� on her short
hair. She wears a fine wide Flemish lace collar veiling the gold braid on her
bodice. For formal occasions the neck would be left bare, and the hair dressed with
- This gentleman wears a suit with the new softer line. The short-waisted doublet
with long skirts has slits on the chest and sleeve, allowing for movement. The
knee-length breeches, full but not padded, are supported by hooks inside the
waistline. The ribbon �points� at waist and knee are decorative survivors of the
lacing hose supports of late medieval times. The lace-trimmed ruff falls to the
shoulders and the hair is long with a �lovelock�. Boots and gloves are of soft
Ordinary women�s dress was similar but they, except when riding, wore a close lace-
trimmed cap. Of course riding side-saddle helped to preserve the ladies� modesty.

* Man�s and women's Clothes about 1738

This gentlemenn wore a smart summer suit, with the coat more tightly fitting than
at the end of the 17th century. It is made of plain cloth embroidered on edges and
pockets, which are raised to hip level. The waistcoat is plain and the breeches are
tighter and fasten below the knee. The shirt is frilled at the cuff and around the
neck is a knotted muslin or lace cravat. He wears his own hair. For formal
occasions a powdered wig tied back with a bow would be worn and his coat and
waistcoat would be of patterned silks.
This lady wears a �sackback� dress developed from the flowing undress gowns of
17th century. Beneath are a stiff corset and cane side hoops supporting the skirts.

The frills of her shift show at the neck, veiled in a muslin �kerchief� and at the
opening of her wing-like cuffs, which are typical of the 1750�s. She wears a round
muslin cap, the central pleat recalling the �fontange� (1690 � 1710). For formal
dress she would wear richly brocaded or embroidered silks.
* 1806 The lady wears a one-piece dress introduced at the end of the 18th century.
Its design was inspired by the new interest in classical works of art. It has a
high waist, straight skirt unsupported by petticoats and very short sleeves.
Contemporaries found it daring and immodest! The material is light and striped. For
warmth she has a shawl, wears long gloves and carries a muff.

The gentleman�s cut-away tail coat of fine cloth with velvet collar, silk
stockings, tie wig and bicorne hat recall day clothes of the 18th century and
anticipate the evening styles of the 20th century. Formal dress is usually a day
style which persists, remaining unchanged though long since out of fashion.

* Day Clothes about 1848/9

This restrictive and demure line is typical of the early Victorian period 1837 �

The lady wears a dress with a long, tight, pointed bodice and full skirt supported
on many petticoats. The sleeves are tight and she also wears a shawl. She carries a
parasol. The gentleman wears the new-fashioned short lounge jacket with wide
trousers, introduced for country wear around 1800. His collar is lower and a bow
replaces the starched cravat.

* Day Clothes 1896

The lady wears tailored �walking dress�. Typical of the middle of the 1890�s is the
great �leg-of-mutton� sleeve, the tight bodice, the small back frill (all that
remains of the bustle) and the smooth flared skirt.

The gentleman wears the top hat and frock coat that have become established formal
dress for over forty years. Black is established as the standard colour for formal
dress, and little else has changed except details like the length of the lapel and
the curve of the tails. He wears a high starched collar

Day Clothes 1920

1920 saw the introduction of the shorter, low-waisted dress, loosely cut and
concealing, not defining, the figure. Flat-chested women were about to become
fashionable. Hats were small, worn over neatly coiled hair. Evening dresses were
often low cut, supported only by shoulder straps and made in exotic materials and
colours. The man�s lounge suit fits tightly and still retains its long jacket. The
trousers are straight but shorter, generally with the turn-up, introduced about
1904. He wears the new, soft felt hat and spats protecting his shoes, introduced in
the middle of the 19th century.

Day Clothes 1938

In 1938 outfits had become square at the shoulder, with a fairly tight, natural
waist and full, flaring skirt. Styles were varied and inspired by French designers
like Elisa Schiaparelli and Gabrielle �Coco� Chanel, and by what the film stars
wore. Evening dresses were �classical� in satins and sequins or �romantic� with
full skirts. Hats were still small and worn tilted over the eye. Men�s suits had
become much broader and more padded at the shoulder, with a long jacket and wide
straight trousers. Narrow �pin�-striped materials were popular. The soft felt hat
generally replaced the bowler.
Day Clothes 1941 (left)
The lady�s suit was designed in 1941 when materials were restricted because of war.
Modelled on the soldier�s battledress, the jacket is waist-length with flapped
pockets. The line is still pre-war with its square shoulders, natural waist and
flaring skirt. Hair was worn curled, sometimes in a long, eye-covering style. For
comfort and warmth many wore �slacks� and headscarves.

The man�s suit has a new longer waist and fits more loosely. Sports jackets with
contrasting trousers gave variety and economised on the �coupons� that were issued
to everybody when clothes were rationed.

Day Clothes 1967 (left)

By 1966 Mary Quant was producing short mini dresses and skirts that were set 6 or 7
inches above the knee, making popular a style that had not taken off when it made
its earlier debut in 1964. The Quant style became known as the Chelsea Look.

The girl (left) has a simple natural hairdo with exotic makeup. She is very slim
and wears a short, mini-skirted semi-fitted tunic made of linked colourful plastic
disks, one of many new materials. The cut is simple and variety of texture, pattern
and colour are all important.

Short hair, dark coats and trousers and plain white shirts had been worn by men for
a hundred and fifty years. Now however men�s hair is worn longer, and there is a
return to flamboyant materials, bright stripes, velvet trimmings and flower
patterns on shirts. He blends a Georgian style cravat, mid-Victorian tail coat and
military trimmings.

Teaching the development of clothing style for the British people in EFL classroom

- Secondary school students
- Flashcards
- video or a story
- A game
- Developing the speaking skill
- Developing the writing skill
- Developing the listening skill
- Make the students aware of the development of the clothing style in Britain
The procedure
* The teacher may start the lesson with a brief introduction about the importance
of clothes in shaping the cultural identity of people.
* After starting the lesson with the introduction, the teacher displays a video to
his students. The video presents the development of clothing design in Britain from
the 11th C till the present day with pictures and a description of clothes in each
* In case the teacher couldn�t find such a video available on the internet, or he
found it but it was containing some inappropriate materials for the learner�s age
or cultural background, he may replace it with telling a story about a time
traveler who narrates for his children how he found British peoples� clothing style
in different centuries.
* After watching the video or listening to the story, the teacher shows some
flashcards to his students. The flashcards contain pictures for man both men and
women wearing clothes from different periods of time. While showing the pictures to
the students, he asks them to guess to what time period each clothing design
* After that, the teacher displays all the flashcards on the board and asks from
each student to choose his favorite clothing a design and the reason behind
choosing it. Some girls may choose the large robes and fans from the 14th C and
boys may prefer the long suits and hats from the 18th C
* Then, the teacher orders the flashcards on the board in a wrong way; he may put a
women�s clothing design from the 15th C with a man�s clothing design from the 17th
C and he would do this with all the flashcards. After this he assign some students
to go to the board and try to correct the order of the flashcards as a sort of a
game to add some entertainment to the lesson.
* As a final activity in this lesson, the teacher asks each student to choose two
different clothing styles and write a paragraph about the main distinctions between