Flapper Intrigue

The 1920s was a time of modernity…a time when morals were being broken, as old, dusty traditions were fading away in a new world of cultural prosperity and glistening illegality. It was a time when corsets were being thrown into a dark, never-ending abyss, as drop-waist dresses were shining on the dazzling city streets. It was a time of fresh change, a time when gender roles were being redefined and common constraints were long forgotten, a time when new promiscuous and daring desires were being pursued with gusto and confidence.

The 1920s was a time of cinematic and cultural glory…a time when the arts thrived in their spontaneities and thrills, in their bold messages and fun-filled pursuits. It was a time when the streets were filled with a golden spirit, with a desire to watch silent film ladies and gents at the theater, with a desire to see paintings and sculptures that are out of the ordinary, with a desire to listen to tunes full of merriment and seduction. It was a time when everything was alive– every building danced, every sidewalk sang, every object moved with a festive, sparkling view of the world.

And very importantly…

The 1920s was a time of independence…a time when women had a chance to live a life without the constant presence of an authoritative figure, without the constant eyes looming over every action they do and every word they say. It was a time when women had a chance to be themselves, to be on their own, to pursue their goals and their dreams. It was a time when women could embrace their sexuality, could wear what they want to wear, dress how they want to dress, feel how they truly wish to feel. Women were given the opportunity to laugh, twirl, and ‘Charleston’ in a new society of looseness and freedom. Women became flappers.

With the great mindsets and creative energies of the photographer Mario Testino and the fashion editor Grace Coddington, Vogue’s May Issue revealed a photo spread that is breathtaking in its depth and in its fashions. Featuring Carey Mulligan, who stars as Daisy Buchanan in Baz Luhrmann’s new The Great Gatsby adaptation, the 1920s flapper spirit comes to life…


In this photo spread, the 1920s modernity, cinematic and cultural glory, and independence shimmers. The modern flapper emerges and grasps attention in each breathtaking, crafted shot. In these photographs, the flapper appears in all her glory. There is dark, alluring seductiveness, as well as light, celestial gaiety and joy. There is a knowing sexuality, an enticing edge that is bold and magnetic, as well as an ethereal, heavenly grace that sparkles in its captivating, airy beauty. In this photo spread, the flapper independence radiates and spins in bliss. A woman who knows what she wants, a woman who is unafraid of outdated judgment and preconceived notion, a woman who relishes in her brazen attitude and dazzling, glitzy charm and wit appears.



And the fashions in this photo spread help to capture this essence of the flapper perfectly…

From Chanel Haute Couture to Oscar de la Renta, from Miu Miu to Nina Ricci, and Alexander McQueen, the fashions in this spread are absolutely divine in their fine, magical details, mystical and light-hearted attributes, and powerful emotions. Passions are revealed, stories are told, telling secrets are hinted at, and mysteries are embraced. Each piece of design looks directly into the eyes of the 1920s, speaking to the sounds and sights of the stimulating, rich period of history, speaking to that mighty determination, speaking to the modern flappers.



With lush couture gowns and sparkling tops and skirts…with hues of midnight mystery and entrancing kindness…With beautiful sequins and Swarovski crystals…with angelic chiffons and colorful feathers…with glistening beads and silk satins…with flower appliqués and classic pearls…with vintage twenties headbands and jeweled heels…with rich diamonds and shining crystals…the fashions of the 1920s appear in a glorious way. Each piece carries that jazzy 1920s spirit. Each piece carries that personal sovereignty, that audacious livelihood. Each piece carries that exquisite autonomy, that eternal liberty of life.


As the ragtime tunes of Scott Joplin swayed and spun…As the underground speakeasies snuck away in thrilling secrecy…As the fashions sparkled into the early morning hours…

The 1920s came to life.

A Cultural Wonderland of Lively Style


A city of culture–A city where expressions run rampant and diversified traditional and modern beliefs arise. A city where celebrations and rituals flourish, bringing with them bold, unique cultural vibrancies and animated, electric activities and delights. A city where enthusiastic individualism prospers, where personal feelings and emotions are embraced and pursued.

A city of art–A city where new talents emerge from the busy, crowded streets, shining in their fresh, cutting-edge ways of thought, glistening in their adventurous works of substance and forwardness. A city where originality is praised and complexities, varieties, and in-depth meanings radiate. A city where communication blooms and understanding succeeds.



A city of fashion.

Tokyo fashions cover a wide array of innovative styles and various cultures. They contain unmistakable qualities of vibrancy and imagination, never commonplace and expected. There is personal choice within each piece of clothing, an avant-garde customization that makes each person unique and extremely confident. The fashions move with their own wishes, with designs progressing to the modern future, and also reminiscing about Japan’s rich, historical past. There is variability and distinction. There is unconventionality and inventiveness.

In Tokyo, there are many different styles and cultures of fashion. With many distinctive fashion tribes coming from fashion districts such as Harajuku and Shibuya, the streets of Tokyo are colored with unparalleled zest, modern and traditional flares of determination, and character. From fashions of light cuteness, with many frills and bows, to fashions of gothic darkness, with many crosses and Victorian references…from fashions of fairytale sparkle to fashions of rebellious, punk nature, it is clear that Tokyo is a city of fashion

And Vogue captured some of these Tokyo elements and themes wonderfully in a powerful, minimalistic photo spread for the March Vogue issue…

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With a mixture of modernity and traditionality…a pairing of stand-out fashions of deep shades and graphic prints with traditional Japanese kimonos and customs…

With glimpses of Tokyo’s cultural, flashy, and kaleidoscopic streets…scenes of vivid chaos and wild diversity…

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The fashions and mindsets of Tokyo come to life.

Credits: Vogue and mode.newslicious.net

Photographer: Mario Testino/ Fashion Editor: Camilla Nickerson