A few days ago I found at Zara’s webpage what I considered to be the ideal crop top for me. This considering body type, body issues, etc etc.
I had been looking for a good crop top for at least two years, so in a whim I bought it.
A few days later I was with one of my best friends at the store, she saw the top and decided to try it on. It looked amazing on her, truly amazing. Except for one thing, it was a little bit to cropped. To quote her “it almost looked like a bra!”
Of course I panicked, and hoped for the best once the top got to my house.
And thankfully it wasn’t bad at all! It is actually quite the crop top for my style. But it got me thinking, it’s not like the crop top is a new trend. In fact we have seen it over and over. From the traditional Indian sari, to Britney Spears in “Baby one more time” women don’t mind showing their midriffs. I do remember showing mine all through sixth and seventh grades when all I could listen was the aforementioned song. So why, all of a sudden I was worried if it was too short?
If we have been using them for so long, I should have been more worried by “Am I going to use it a lot?” “Can I wear it with something else I have?” It’s not like it would be the first time I was showing my belly to the world.
But as a society, what makes us go back to it? Maybe the same boredom that makes us go back to the sixties, and seventies fashion over and over again. We are lacking creativity in the fashion department; but the crop top actually makes us feel adventurous, maybe a little bit exotic and a little like breaking the rules of what is supposed to be decent to wear in public. (I say this, but seriously, you find pictures and images of women bearing skin all over the pages of history, they were probably covered only during the Victorian era.)
Since the 1940’s (and even before that) this piece has been there not only on informal dressing, but also on formal gowns marking the hourglass figure of a woman.
We saw them in TV shows constantly, remember “I dream of genie”?
And on the street during the 60’s it wasn’t uncommon to see girls with their blouses tied, showing off some skin. (I must confess I had a bright orange blouse that had this design while I was in middle school, and I couldn’t stop wearing it.)
And then we go all the way into the 80’s, Madonna with her rebellious strike, Flashdance and the flashy sports like fashion made the crop top part of every woman’s wardrobe. They felt like an original piece that made a statement. Maybe “I’m not boring!”, or “I do what I want, just like Madonna”.
Going through the 90’s grunge style, which featured crop tops as well, continuing the rebellious strike of the 80’s, into Britney’s and Christina’s almost bikini like tops in the early 2000’s, and nowadays in which the silhouette we are favouring tends to go back to that one of the 40’s and 50’s.
They look good, they can be styled so elegant or completely “teenager trying to make her parents ground her”. And is another of the pieces we seem to keep going back to (I’m looking at you bell bottoms); it’s versatile and allows us to express different parts of the culture and times we are living. At the end of the day, that’s what fashion is, a portrait of the culture of an era; even if we like to go back in time to find inspiration in order to express ourselves as a society in the best possible way. In all its different expressions, fashion is definitely art.
Lots of Love