Not sure what someone means when they say to dress “casual”? No worries! The casual look has evolved in the past century as a new, comfortable way to dress that more and more people are adopting into their wardrobe.
History of the Casual Style
It is believed that the birthplace of the casual style is England and Scotland in the 1970s, and the progenitors of it are football fans, who formed small gangs, or the so-called casuals, which adopted a certain style of dress including famous brands of jeans, T-shirts, sneakers and jackets. It was one of the branches of sports style, but with a more casual slant.
The modern dandies who dressed up for hours before leaving the house, even if not going to some special event, have their “ancestors” too. At the beginning of the century there were the flaneurs – groups of citizens who wanted only to show themselves off, and for this purpose they go out of the house. Flaneurs chose their outfits with care, following the latest fashion trends, but tried very hard to look simple, showing that they are not dressed up for the event, constituting an event in themselves.
What is Meant by “Casual Style”?
Jeans and sweaters, shirts and comfortable trousers, plain T-shirts and sweatshirts, skirts and dresses –everything that counts as “comfortable clothes” – is the basis for this style. The casual style list goes on forever. It is easier to limit the range of things that will never relate to this style. In this case, we are talking about uniforms and national costumes, clothes for parties and costumes for official receptions, for example, an evening dress or coat, formal business style clothes, sportswear and the clothing of subcultures, such as hip-hop culture.
The only unbreakable rule of casual style – the clothes should be well sewn, look good on you and fit you.
Every day, casual style is becoming more and more popular because it fits everyone and does not put a too strict framework on choices. It is safe to say that many people are choosing this style not so much due to the comfort, convenience and brightness, though it leaves a huge imprint, as for the purpose of self-expression and emphasizing their own individuality.
Clothing of Casual Style
The basic principle of casual styles is convenience. Jeans, sweaters, shirts, trousers and T-shirts all fit into casual style. There are no strict requirements on colors: you can use the classic shades or a bright range.
Casual style is characterized by the rejection of ostentatious neatness with ironed shirts or trousers. Shirts and pants have their place to be, but they don’t have to have a classic cut, be ironed perfectly, or tucked in.
A symbolic element of casual style is a jacket. The easiest example of how to go from office style to casual is to wear usual jeans instead of trousers or a skirt. A jacket makes jeans more formal and gives a more elegant look to a dress in casual style. With a wardrobe of several jackets of different colors and several styles of jeans, you have assured yourself trendy combinations for a few months, or even years in advance.
Many people mix elements of casual style with official business attire, to give the latter some relaxation and convenience. Unofficial business style is a slightly more formal version of casual style. The right accessories will help you make it more attractive and original. Use scarves and shawls of different colors, belts, leather, textiles or plastic, bags and clutches, a variety of hats…
Footwear for Casual Style
Almost any comfortable shoes are suitable for casual style: moccasins, sneakers, boots, shoes. It is believed that the classic pumps cannot attribute to casual style, because they are a sign of official-business style, although many women cannot imagine a day in the spring without such shoes.
Casual style “modifies” the strict model of shoes, so that women can wear them out of the office and not feel chained too the framework of working style. For example, shoes with a small heel, platform shoes and boots a la garcon perfectly match casual style. You need that pair of shoes that does not “ask” for office pants or a strict skirt.
At first glance it seems that casual style is a combination of any desired items of clothes. In fact, it has its own specific features and traits. By itself, casual lies somewhere between the official-business style and the style of clothing for the holiday, but if you are too careless when choosing items in casual style, then you run the risk of sliding into the ranks of people without taste, measure and sense of beauty.
Types of Casual Style
This style involves a combination of clothes in casual style with sports apparel. For example, you wear a sports T-shirt with jeans and shoes with heels, or conversely, sport shoes are combined with everyday tops. Sport casual is not suitable for sports, because it cannot entirely consist only of sport stuff, but it is perfectly suitable for recreation.
Street casual direction appeared in connection with the wildly popular street-style – observing the style of ordinary people on the street. All those who fall into the category of street-style, in fact, follow the same style of casual, but to be photographed, they invent some distinctive feature or an exponential part. In other words, street casual is casual street style, but “with fantasy.”
Smart casual has aristocracy, includes elements of deliberate simplicity with aristocratic luxury in materials or dress silhouettes. This style can be found in female bosses in their spare time and in wealthy high schools students, which means they can afford to buy expensive things, but everyday life dictates a more low-key approach to clothing. It is easy to find a use for smart casual style, if you can afford it. Smart casual symbolizes quality, gloss and representativeness and never reveals itself at first sight. How expensive are the things you are wearing, a true connoisseur can only guess.
Business casual, or informal business style, used to refer to the style of “relaxed Friday.” Once a week, business leaders allow their employees to come to work with less scrupulous concern of the wardrobe and ignore the harsh requirements of official-business style. Business casual is different from the usual casual style in more elegance; it is often used for negotiations and meetings outside of the office or on a business trip.
How to Make Your Casual Style Unique?
Try to pay special attention to details. Do not fasten all the buttons on the shirt, rather than using belts, use a woven lace, with which you can belt a dress or a sweater.
Your individual casual style can and should embody contradictions. For example, you can put on one club thing, as if you did it by accident, or add one thing of “rocker” style on a background of fairly modest others. The trick is to create the illusion of refined randomness, as if you do not specifically want to stand out from the crowd.
Wear a few things in the same way on the principle of layering. This technique is advantageous for spring weather, when the evening is still cold, and the day is already hot like in summer. You can wear a knitted cardigan with a belt with a summer dress, or a leather jacket with dark pants and a silk light top with waistcoat and a scarf around your neck. If all things are picked up in beautifully combined colors, even quite bright, then you will create a simple but a thoughtful outfit.
Casual does not involve a large amount of jewelry and accessories, but you can add enough to make it not dull. Refuse bags of dull black and brown colors; get yourself a rare unobtrusive shade of your choice. Pick up a scarf with a pattern, made of natural silk. Take care of the sunglasses and watches. These can be expensive, but first you have to emphasize the beauty of the face, and only in the second degree speak of prosperity.
Finally, casual does not mean sloppy. Casual style does not tolerate untidiness in clothing including outward seams, protruding threads, and stretched knees, even though you can feel comfortable in such clothes.