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A History of the Silk Kaftan

Written by Lindsey Brown

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Posted on February 01 2021

Famed for its flattering and versatile styling, the kaftan is steeped in history. First being worn in Persia, by both men and women, as early as 600BC. These early versions of the kaftan were worn for practical rather than stylish fashionable purposes, to keep cool in the heat, as the loose and voluminous cut of a kaftan making it fantastically loose and airy.

It wasn’t until the 1950s that leading European fashion designers such as Christian Dior and Balenciaga introduced loose evening gowns into their ready to wear collections.

Lindsey Brown Resortwear Vintage Kaftans Vogue 1975

 

During the 1960’s the kaftan became a style icon in itself, with Diana Vreeland an American editor for Vogue and Barbara Hutton and American socialite both helping to popularise the new trend of wafting around in kaftans. Photography by the talented Slim Aarons depicting poolside parties from Monaco to Palm Springs also helped to and immortalize and set the kaftan dress code. Only the chicest of women dressed in flowing kaftans at the world’s most glamorous resorts.

1969 Voyage to India Kaftan Photoshoot Lindsey Brown Resortwear

 

With popularity growing, the chicest of women dressed in flowing kaftans at the world’s most glamorous resorts. In the 1970’s film stars such as Elizabeth Taylor further raised the kaftan profile as a glamourous daytime garment, as Elizabeth Taylor even choosing to wear a long floaty white kaftan for her second wedding to Richard Burton in 1975.

 

Lindsey Brown Resortwear History of the Silk Kaftan Elizabeth Taylor

 

In the years since then, various interpretations of the kaftan have ensured that it remains at the forefront of fashion. From flowing kaftan-style evening dresses worn by such style icons as Chrissy Teigen, Beyonce and daytime kaftans as their style is endlessly versatile, available in a myriad of cuts and colours, and can be as dressy or laid back as you like.

 

 

For Lindsey Brown, the kaftan remains the core of our label. Resort wear is a look and style and our kaftan collections transcend through the seasons, with shapes that can take you anywhere. Our label is a curated edit of feminine and flattering pieces, in a mix of both effervescent and warm colours, echoing Lindsey’s personal fashion style.

 

 

 

Lindsey Brown Resortwear Marbella Silk Kaftan

See the full Lindsey Brown designer kaftan collection

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