Checkered in Classic Style: Gingham Fabric

Checks Of Classic & Modern Appeal:  Gingham
Checks Of Classic & Modern Appeal: Gingham

Gingham. The pattern that never seems to fade. Granted, its appearance and reappearance into fashion proves that it is an enduring classic of crisp and fresh appeal. Fashion evolves and styles change, but the timeless checked pattern of distinction will always thread through fashion’s world. A classic pattern that returns with a fresh, modern spin, once again. Referring to “Striped cotton”, this timeless and classic pattern typically consists of “medium yarns in varying qualities and woven of plan cotton fibers”. Originally, gingham was a bright colored stripe.  Who knew? Gingham evolved into the check pattern that has brought it to its iconic and classic status.

Ranging from medium to light weight and from very small to very large checked patterns, The iconic coloring and pattern is a balanced pattern, with no right or wrong side, since the fibers are colored before they are woven together.  Gingham is most common in blue and white yet gingham would eventually gain its acclaim as a red and white pattern of delight. Of course, there are other colors that have arrived to the forefront that echo the classic checked style.  And of this pattern of checked style?  A look to the past…

 The Iconic "Wizzard Of OZ" Gingham Dress
Judy Garland & The Iconic “Wizzard Of OZ” Gingham Dress

Perhaps the iconic blue gingham dress worn by Judy Garland as Dorothy from the Wizzard Of Oz remains as the most poignant American link to this checkered blue pattern. Yet this patterned fabric that has endured through time to transcend style that would include the mod 1960’s appeal and beyond, deserves a look back. To appreciate this classic pattern that appears in fashion archives since its inception in the world of textiles, a brief background of the pattern of checks….

During the 16th century gingham fabric was manufactured within the Dutch-colonized Malaysia and Indonesia, which excelled in their use of rich, color fast textile dyes that would produce textiles like gingham that wove bright colors through the fabrics. This checked pattern, known as “Malay ginggang”held the meaning of  “With space between, hence striped”.  It is believed that the term Gingham was introduced to the English language by both Dutch and French traders in 1615.  Yet having claim to the word “Gingham”, evidence links that the Italians and Indonesians may have also had a part in the name that stems from the same root, meaning “Striped”.

During the 17th century this brightly colored textile of striped cotton-weave fabric was widely exported to Europe and colonial USA from India and Indonesia through the East India Trading Company. In the mid-18th Century, England’s textile mills produced the checked gingham cotton fabric using imported cotton and dyes. In fact, Manchester, England was the center of gingham fabric production. It is stated that there were 108 cotton mills in Manchester at the peak of its industrial boom. That is quite a lot of gingham to satisfy the rage of fashion’s call.  Fabric of fashionable style, indeed. In America, cotton mills were also established to produce the fabric that was “All the rage” across Europe and in the United States- gingham!

Perhaps Gingham, which has links and symbolism to youth and nostalgia, will continue to  evolve in fashion and in style within the 21st Century.  What is certain is that although it may appear to go “in and out” of fashion, classics never fade.  Always to return, the patterned print of checks will always find its way to fashion’s forefront

Tried & True:  Vintage Gingham Fashion
Tried & True: Vintage Gingham Fashion

One cannot mention gingham without the mention and visual nod to Brigitte Bardot.  In 1959  Bardot married Jacques Charrier in Paris. Donning a wedding dress of pink and white gingham designed by couturier Jacques Estérel, Bardot made the French Vichy pattern  highly fashionable with worldwide appeal. She is even said to have nearly single-handedly brought French glamour to the classic gingham pattern. Of course!

1959/Brigitte Bardot/Paris, France
1959/Brigitte Bardot/Paris, France
Brigitte Bardot (France/1959) Bedecked In Gingham
Brigitte Bardot (France/1959) Bedecked In Gingham

Another nod to the past of checked style…Gingham and Hollywood united and icons and stars such as Ingrid Bergman, Audrey Hepburn, Grace Kelly, Marilyn Monroe, Katherine Hepburn and other icons of style, such as First Lady Jackie Kennedy, would don the checked pattern of stylish fashionable statements.

Icons Of Style:  Bedecked In Gingham
Icons Of Style: Bedecked In Gingham
Vintage Appeal:  Gingham &  Its Fashionable Past
Vintage Appeal: Gingham & Its Fashionable Past
Audrey Hepburn:  Adorned In A Checked Pattern Classic
Audrey Hepburn: Adorned In A Checked Pattern Classic
Marilyn Monroe & Jane Fonda:  Gingham Appeal Of Hollywood Style
Marilyn Monroe & Jane Fonda: Gingham Appeal Of Hollywood Style
Icons Of Fashion In Gingham Fabric
Icons Of Fashion In Gingham Fabric
Fashion's Gingham:  Evolution Of Style
Fashion’s Gingham: Evolution Of Style
Icons & Fashion's Appeal:  Gingham
Icons & Fashion’s Appeal: Gingham
Fashion's Gingham:  Always A Classic
Fashion’s Gingham: Always A Classic
Gingham Style On The Cover Of Magazines
Gingham Style On The Cover Of Magazines
Gingham Style:  Magazines & Fashion's Style
Gingham Style: Magazines & Fashion’s Style
Gingham:  Covers Of Fashion
Gingham: Covers Of Fashion
Fashionable Gingham: Checks Of Style
Fashionable Gingham: Checks Of Style
Modern Appeal:  Gingham & Fashion's Fresh Perspective
Modern Appeal: Gingham & Fashion’s Fresh Perspective
Super Model Gingham: Enduring  Style In A Classic Pattern
Super Model Gingham: Enduring Style In A Classic Pattern
Fresh Appeal:  The Modern Take On Gingham
Fresh Appeal: The Modern Take On Gingham
Moden Gingham:  Fashion's Evolution Of  A Classic Pattern
Moden Gingham: Fashion’s Evolution Of A Classic Pattern
Jcrew:  Gingham Checks Of Modern Appeal
Jcrew: Gingham Checks Of Modern Appeal
Gingham Of Modern Interpretation
Gingham Of Modern Interpretation
Gingham Style: Colorful & Vivid Checked Appeal
Gingham Style: Colorful & Vivid Checked Appeal
Timeless Blue & White Checked Fashion:  Gingham
Timeless Blue & White Checked Fashion: Gingham
The "Guess" Models In Gingham
The “Guess” Models In Gingham
Masculine & Classic  Style:   Gingham
Masculine & Classic Style: Gingham

Of course, the dapper man bedecked in classic gingham… a visual nod of appreciation, indeed…

 Dapper Classics:  The Man & Gingham
Dapper Classics: The Man & Gingham

The world of entertaining and grand events of life are not without the inclusion of this checked pattern of timeless style. Checked style of celebratory appeal endures…

Wedding  & Entertaining  In Gingham Style
Wedding & Entertaining In Gingham Style
Gingham Style :  The Dapper Groom & Groomsman
Gingham Style : The Dapper Groom & Groomsman
Entertaining Bliss In Checked Style:  Gingham Delights
Entertaining Bliss In Checked Style: Gingham Delights

Of course, a visual appreciation of gingham outside the world of fashion and into the world of the interior. Gingham is certainly a statement of bold appeal when found within the interior. Interior, appeal, for certain…

Interior Delights In Gingham Style
Interior Delights In Gingham Style
Gingham:  Interior & Exterior Appeal
Gingham: Interior & Exterior Appeal
Vivid Appeal In Checked Style:  Gingham Interiors
Vivid Appeal In Checked Style: Gingham Interiors

Consider the classic pattern of checks. Whether it is a modern take on the timeless fabric pattern that adorns our fashionable world, embellishes events and celebrations or boldly proclaims itself within our interiors, gingham is worthy of appreciation.  Now a modern classic with a historied past, indeed…

Onward,

Kristin

“The fabric of existence weaves itself whole” -Charles Ives

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