Saturday, August 9, 2014

Frida Kahlo Exposed Through Fashion


 Frida Kahlo is famously known for her paintings, and her ability to express pain through her works. Dubbed as a Surrealist, Kahlo refused to claim the label since her paintings were not of dreams, but of how she truly viewed the world. Not a particularly celebrated artist during her lifetime, she would be quite surprised to realize the impact she has made, not only in the world of  art, but as an icon of  fashion. 

"She has made stylistically a lasting impression on fashion and style in general because it had both: use of color and she was definitely an icon of the feminist movement," 

-Misha Nonoo (British designer)


                     FRIDA KHALO FASHION STYLE


 Kahlo's distinctive uni brow, traditional mexican full skirts, loose peasant blouses, and her hair vividly adorned by colored flowers, was iconically "Khalo-esque". Her jewelry artistically bold, and the stacking of necklaces and rings were undeniably ahead of her time. Such projection of self identity gives off the impression of a powerful woman, full of confidence, energy, and life. 


"She had a tremendous self-confidence. She was convinced that what she wore displayed who she was inside," -Alejandra Lopez, (Art restorer for Frida Kahlo Museum)

Her fashion style was powerful and full of color. A style that truly celebrated life. One would never expect such an individual would actually be living in such pain for most days of her life. Plagued  with health problems, Kahlo's clothing was in many ways a form of "armor". Like her paintings, fashion was in many ways used to deal with the pain in her life, both physical and emotional. 



As a child she suffered from polio, and at 18 she was horribly injured in a bus accident that would cause her physical agony for most of her life. For the earlier part of her life she wore masculine suits with her hair slicked back to cover her left leg that was thinner and weaker. 



Later in her life, she suffered from Gangrene and her right leg was amputated, and replaced by a wooden leg.  Her shoes still colorful and delicately embroidered with various designs, it is visibly evident that her fashion sense still celebrated life. 



Under her feminine loose blouses, lie stiff corsets that locked her body and fought the shrills of pain that ran along her back. 

"She described how she used her clothes to cover her body imperfections," -Circe Henestrosa


Kahlo, also faced much personal heartache, caused by her husband, Diego Riviera and his countless affairs, which even included her sister. Every break in their relationship could be spotted in her appearance, as she would chop off all her hair and refuse to wear any traditional mexican attire which her husband had adored. Gravitating to western attire, and darker colors, at these times, she would always return to her iconic style of "life and color" as her relationship with Diego would be restored. 




Perhaps, the truest test of any artist, is time itself. Despite nearly 60 years since her death, her artwork and fashion style continues to inspire and influence the world. 



In 2010, RicardoTisci's Couture Collection for Givenchy, was completely inspired by Frida Khalo.


2012 Dolce & Gabbana drew inspiration from Frida Khalo



Maya Hansen  paid tribute to Frida Khalo in Spring/Summer Collection, 2013.


Frida Khalo Style can also be spotted in top fashion magazines all over the world. 


Close friends with Pablo Picasso, she inspired him to make a pair of earrings shaped like hands especially for her.



Pages from Frida Khalo's Daily journal.










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