Fancy dress has become the new fashion hit of the year! At parties, clubs, festivals, gigs and even weddings, wacky outfits are the order of the day, with fancy dress sales bucking the economic slowdown and retailers reporting sales up by more than a third so far this year. Celebrities have led the way, with Heidi Klum, husband Seal and guests in a “white trash” themed wedding vow renewal ceremony and Lily Allen dressed as Queen Victoria for her recent gig, with her fans wearing costumes depicting London underground stations (for example, several turned up in angel fancy dress, to represent Angel tube station). Even fashion icon Paris Hilton, photographed in a fetching Alice in Wonderland costume, has decided it is “cool” to be seen in fancy dress. So, will we see Victoria Beckham dressed in a cute angel fancy dress costume, with matching Gucci wings and tiara? Well, that remains to be seen!
Where celebrities lead of course, the rest will follow and the trend for flamboyant and humorous costumes looks set to continue for the rest of the year and beyond. It seems that the economic gloom and doom brought about by the recession has promoted the need for escapism and fun. Dressing as a more fantastic version of yourself or as a completely different being – such as in angel fancy dress – now appears to be a prerequisite of going to a club or a festival. People want to dress up and be outrageous even in the midst of the credit crunch – perhaps even because of the credit crunch. This is a time when people want escapism and to imagine themselves in another world. Going to parties dressed in something ridiculous, like a penguin or clown outfit, or in something pretty and sexy like an angel fancy dress costume makes things more fun. It gets rid of the pretension of fashion and trying to be beautiful or “cool”. It also evokes nostalgia of childhood – remember rooting around in the dressing-up box at school or in your mum’s wardrobe for something exciting to wear, to transport you into a different, more exciting world for a while?
As far as the rich and famous are concerned, the sky’s the limit when it comes to the amount of money spent on fancy dress. But what is great for more ordinary folk during these tough economic times, is that fancy dress can be bought, hired or even home-made for a relatively small outlay. Angel fancy dress, for example, is one of the simplest and least expensive costumes to wear and an on-line search brought up a lady’s snow angel fancy dress costume for a very modest outlay of under 25.00 pounds. The outfit comprised a full length white dress with sheer sleeves featuring deep feather trimmed cuffs and a wide silver belt. Also included in the price was a halo and feather trimmed wings. Never has it been easier to become someone new, to change your persona for a short period of time!