As the plot takes unexpected twists and turns in PBS’s highly addictive “Downton Abbey,” fashion has broken free from the heavily corseted looks of the Edwardian era to the slimmer silhouettes of the early 1920s.
Waists are moving down, skirts are moving up, and chests are flattening, says Susannah Buxton, the series’ costume designer for Season 1 and part of Season 2. The Crawley girls are following suit with sleeveless chemise dresses that (gasp) show some ankle.
After so many ’50s fitted sheaths and full skirts, Louche tweeds and slim skirts feel right for now. ’Bye, Betty; hello, Lady Mary.
Some ways to mine the period style.
• Go for glamour in svelte elbow-length lambskin opera gloves with gold-tone studs. Wear them demurely with a suit with three-quarter sleeves. Or go from pretty to punk, and pair them with a deep V-neck black dress. $168 at Nordstrom stores.
• When the wind picks up in your city’s office-buildings canyon, keep your head warm and your face fetchingly framed with a wool-felt cloche. Also available in ivory with gray trim, $65 at www.propertopper.com.
• Pocket squares are de rigeur for the upstairs crowd at “Downton.” New devotees embracing the accessory include Daniel Craig and Tom Ford. Nonchalantly slip Club Monaco’s silk bird print into a pocket to dress up aT-shirt and jacket. For a more formal occasion, remember not to match the tie and pocket square. $39.50 at www.clubmonaco.com.
• Got a bonus? Splurge on these Graziella earrings, embossed black studs surrounded with sparkly Swarovski crystals and a fun fringe. Leave the flapper dress and boa at home. $370 at www.dannijo.com.