What is Fashion Style: Style Identification of a pair of Trousers of King Kirti Sri Rajasimha (1747-1782 AD) of the Kandyan Kingdom of Sri Lanka, exhibits at the Museum of Temple of the Tooth, Kandy, Sri Lanka
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Style becomes the unique selling point of fashion today. The role of style does not only help consumers to decide on fashion but it leads the consumer to a good taste of life. Authenticity does matter in style. In this research paper, I argue that history and culture are significant in authenticating a style. The main aim of this research paper is to address how history and culture influence style authenticity in fashion? First, I tried to evoke this question by investigating two high-end designers, Vivienne Westwood (1941 -) and Alexander MacQueen (1969-2010). It was found out that historical dress influences have a direct correlation with selected designers' style authenticity. It was studied how they carried out research and what were the decisive aspects of exerting influences and transferring design possibilities to future fashion. It was found out that designers created conceptual designs that enable expressing the socio-cultural context of the inspired dress. They studied the socio-cultural context of the dress. They followed actual historical dress details and transferred historical inspirations through modern technology and pattern cutting. Juxtapositioning, hybridization such design principles merged the past and present. Secondly, by taking inspiration from the high-end designers' design process, I explored the royal style of a pair of trousers of the King Kirti Sri Rajasimha (1747-1782 AD) of Sri Lanka. This is a well-preserved garment. In this paper, I present the first direct determinations of analysis of the cut, design, and sewing made of ancient royal trousers of 18th Century Sri Lanka. Written records, scholarly reviews, photographs, Museum websites, temple paintings, sculptures, sketches of the period, Socio-political influences affecting dress were studied. The study explores details of design elements which enable to identify the design possibilities to transfer to a style authenticity.
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