Q. 14.0( 6 Votes )

Explain the reasons for the changes in clothing patterns and materials in the eighteenth century.

Answer :

The emergence of the modern world is marked by dramatic changes in clothing. Before the age of democratic revolutions and the development of capitalist markets in eighteenth-century Europe, most people dressed according to their regional codes, and were limited by the types of clothes and the cost of materials that were available in their region. Clothing styles were also strictly regulated by class, gender or status in the social hierarchy. After the eighteenth century, the colonization of most of the world by Europe, the spread of democratic ideals and the growth of an industrial society, completely changed the ways in which people thought about dress and its meanings. People could use styles and materials that were drawn from other cultures and locations, and western dress styles for men were adopted worldwide.

Many changes were made possible in Britain due to the introduction of new materials and technologies. Other changes came about because of the two world wars and the new working conditions for women.


Before the seventeenth century, most ordinary women in Britain possessed very few clothes made of flax, linen or wool, which were difficult to clean. After 1600, trade with India brought cheap, beautiful and easy-to-maintain Indian chintzes within the reach of many Europeans who could now increase the size of their wardrobes.


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