Just as it happens with long pants, you can recreate a thousand different styles with shorts. This garment always brings with it a ray of sunshine that goes to illuminate any outfit, even when you decide to wear it with a pair of tights due to colder temperatures. Elegant or sporty, very short or knee-length, tight or soft, nowadays shorts are suitable for any taste and occasion!
The birth of shorts dates back to the late 1800s and obviously, they were a bit different from those we are used to today: combined with long socks, they were part of the school uniform of American children and teenagers.
The first woman to wear a pair of shorts was tennis player Alice Marble who in 1933 showed up on the court with a pair of shorts above the knee. From that moment on, no woman was ever without them! The track shorts in fact, are now established both in terms of their athletic functionality also thanks to increasingly innovative and performing materials such as those used in models offered by Nike or Adidas by Stella McCartney. Over the years, various designers have then reinterpreted this garment making it suitable to be worn even in leisure time, such as the shorts by Off-White and Palm Angels, perfectly combinable with a shoe with heels for a real streetstyler look!
It will be, however, from the '40s and especially from the '50s, that there will be a real revolution of women's shorts. Typical American beauties, buxom and attractive women who, for reasons of practicality, begin to wear shorts that, getting shorter and shorter and gradually assuming a more feminine and sensual air, thanks to their high waist and the bandage silhouette, will begin to attract male attention and not on their forms. We are talking about the Pin-up phenomenon, real sex-symbols, unbridled and totally devoid of the mystery that had characterized the divas of the '30s. A brand that takes its inspiration from this phenomenon is Dolce & Gabbana, whose tapered shorts are characterized by a strong and determined femininity, while the unmistakable Balmain shorts in tweed, leave fascinated from the first glance, thanks to the typical buttons that recall the navy style, always typical of those years.
In the decade to follow will create two factions that will see stand out on the one hand the beautiful Brigitte Bardot, sensual icon of the '60s, which will exhibit super tight shorts accompanied by boots. This will give rise to a real figure in which the girls of those years will begin to identify themselves, or that of the "Lolita": an immature girl, but at the same time uninhibited and super-seductive. At the same time, in contrast to this phenomenon, will appear an impeccable Jacqueline Kennedy, unforgettable symbol of class and elegance that will leave its mark with its white shorts, wide and delicate, just above the knee. Today Jackie is in fact considered one of the greatest icons of refinement and standard-bearer of bon ton: a style that she was able to masterfully adapt to the different roles she played in life, from that of First Lady to that of jet setter. To assume an elitist air like Mrs. Onassis, you can consider the bermuda shorts by Philosophy and Federica Tosi that, if combined with a flat sandal, for example, create a perfect daily look suitable for the workplace.
If the goal is to search for women's shorts that accompany the typical hot days of the city, but at the same time express their essence at its best, then you should certainly focus on the classic colonial Bermuda shorts. The latter that, from exclusive uniform of explorers of tropical paradises, have then established themselves as the new metropolitan uniform, can easily create a perfect look to wear for any occasion, if worn with a jacket or a shirt. An example, in this sense, are definitely the bermudas of Dsquared2 and those of N°21.
With the arrival of the lively '70s you will see the explosion of hot pants: micro shorts, tight and provocative, covering from the pelvis to a few inches of thigh. At the time there were really all kinds! From those made of denim to those in cotton, from those in nylon to those in leather, these were often enriched with joyful prints, in full harmony with the non-conformist and rebellious spirit of the hippy decade. In 1973, in Italy, the advertising campaign created by Oliviero Toscani for Jesus Jeans, which showed a girl from behind wearing hot pants and the phrase "Chi mi ama mi segua" (Who loves me, follow me), caused quite a stir. This campaign is still an inspiration for some designers today. In fact, we find the same cut in their collections, both in the rebellious denim shorts by Alexander Wang, featuring a monogram print, and in the denim shorts with Paisley pattern by Etro, which give a touch of liveliness to a jaunty outfit.
"Daring and getting noticed" became the leitmotif of 80's fashion and that's why shorts will see themselves transported into the fantastic world of punk, enriched with studs, leather inserts and pins. The girls of that time were used to abound always and in any case, from dawn to dusk, without ever being afraid to exaggerate. And speaking of this phenomenon, we can not fail to mention her, the true queen of punk, Vivienne Westwood, who still offers rebellious and eccentric looks. On the other side of the rebellion, we have instead a more avant-garde vision of this garment; we are talking about the Bermuda shorts by Rick Owens characterized above all by particular studies of deconstruction in the cuts.
There is little to do, shorts are now a garment that can not miss in anyone's closet! Starting from the '90s, they will be seen very short, in denim and frayed: accompanied by wide printed t-shirts, backpacks and boots. Eclectic and versatile, denim models best interpret the concept of femininity and this can be seen, for example, in Isabel Marant's shorts and Miu Miu's shorts that perfectly caress and wrap the body, enhancing the female form. This decade will also see the birth of the most controversial musical phenomenon of the twentieth century: Techno, which will lead girls to dance on stratospheric platform shoes, combined with high-waisted shorts as if to imitate the legendary Madonna, timeless style icon.
At the beginning of the 2000s it was the pop star Kylie Minogue who created a real trend with her golden micro pants, hyper feminine and bubbly just like her with which she began a real process of liberation, without ever being vulgar. For this aura of effervescent flavor, today we must consider the skorts. Initially called "trouser skirts", they were designed to provide greater freedom to women who performing activities such as sports, gardening or cleaning wanted to keep in evidence their feminine and elegant side. Today, however, skorts are suitable for any occasion and give a jaunty look such as those of Red Valentino.
Cold or hot, by now shorts don't fear seasons! For this reason, we see them peeping out of the contemporary catwalks in every collection. The major luxury brands, in fact, aim to create models suitable for the harshest months using natural fabrics such as wool or leather as we see for the shorts of Bottega Veneta up to technical fabrics such as those of GCDS. In addition, they are often proposed in warm tones that recall those of the earth and are perfect to play with combinations of tights and boots as we have seen in the latest fashion shows of MSGM.
Through this stimulating mix of cultural and temporal interpretations, we have made it clear that today we are witnessing the coexistence of women's shorts distinguished by different styles: from the more aggressive, short and tight-fitting ones to the softer, bon ton ones; passing through high-waisted ones to those in jeans. In short, everyone can find their perfect shorts, without forgetting that this garment has marked the history of fashion and that, from a "rigorous uniform", it first turned into a revolutionary garment and then became a trendy garment that combines practicality and sophistication.