As women’s underwear fashions have evolved over the years, and the cultural mores and attitudes to women have changed – the overriding sexy image for the ideal women’s underwear was either pretty and feminine, or seductive and provocative. Today’s modern women however, are carving out a new niche for themselves that is sexy and chic, through the influence of social and cultural leaders and fashion designers.
Many believe women’s lingerie has frequently been designed with the preferences of males in mind. The lingerie era was really ushered in during the flapper era, with increasing sexuality, as garter belts were invented to keep stockings from falling down while dancing. Although garter belts served a very functional role, their appeal to men lay in their occasional sightings and the power of suggestion. So even after the invention of panty hose, which eliminated the need for garter belts, these belts still held their place in the lingerie world as a seductive accessory for women. However, women have known since their introduction, that these accessories were not comfortable, simple, or conducive to an active lifestyle. Still, they have persisted in the collections of top lingerie designers. Similarly, pretty, lacy underwear has become a staple of lingerie collections for their traditional feminine appeal although some might label them as demure articles, hardly indicative of a confidently, sexy and chic woman. The only alternative to these provocative and ultra feminine styles until now has been the sporty collection – devoid of embellishment and designed for strictly exercise and sport purposes. Although it certainly meets one need of the active modern woman – it denies any of the other facets she has.
Into this mix comes today’s women who juggle everything and assume every role throughout their waking days. A recent Vogue article by Emily Zak hit on this point exactly with a nod to Michelle Obama, and the modern new standard of American elegance and chic she is anticipated to create with her President husband in a White House of diverse people and ideas. Zak describes Michelle Obama as having an “easy elegance on the campaign trail” and being “more importantly, a mother of two, a wife and a brilliant Harvard educated lawyer.” She just may be America’s answer to the cutting remarks of tastemaker, fashion icon and field editor Diana Vreeland, who once stated that with few exceptions, “There is no such thing as a chic American” America is ready it appears for designs and designers that can address this burgeoning chic image for women.
A new underwear competitor has set its sights on meeting the needs of the modern woman with a new way to be chic and sexy. Alenver Inc. has designed a collection that is simultaneously described as chic, funky, sexy, unique and playful. Their women’s fitted boxers are ideal for sports, around the house and even sleepwear. Their thongs and string panties are comfortable for day wear and their funky lace line is perfect for evening wear and the perfect balance with jeans. All the styles promote a playful aspect with the concept of messages in reverse on the signature wide elastics of the bra and waistbands. In summary, the collection meets the needs of all the aspects of the modern woman’s life. Alenver has created their collection for the woman who pays attention to how she looks, and who tries to coordinate her clothing, even if it will not be seen by others. Alenver’s collection with messages for the wearer alone to be able to read in the mirror, reinforces this idea that the woman is the priority, and her own self expression is valued.
It is an important concept to remember that fashion and clothes are not the same thing. Josh Patner, Slate fashion expert and former assistant designer for Donna Karan states that: “While clothes keep you from being naked and cold and pockets provide a place for your house keys, fashion when it’s good, sends the imagination racing and speaks for the wearer’s dreams in a way words can’t.” This holds true for underwear fashion as well. Today’s modern women invariably hold the profile of creative, working, family minded, and independent individuals who juggle all things. Women are achieving new ways of success in their lives and channeling that new energy into their fashion. Being able to express that new way to be chic and sexy, even down to the details of fashion underwear shows the progress today’s women have made in their quest for lingerie with them in mind.