The Libra Dress Historian On Uranian Fashion Generations

W Magazine

Dear Libran Dress Historian,

What an interesting field!

Have wondered about the relationship between Uranus and the style of generations eg 1930’s Uranus in Virgo = Vionnet’s bias cut and the most stylish designs of all time and 1920’s Uranus in Leo = Glamorous sparkling beadwork and Chanel, diamonds as a girls best friend?

Also dressing for your North Node? How to tap into your future?

Thanks
Year of the Phoenix

Dear Year of the Phoenix,

What massive questions! I’m going to save the North Node question for another post (coming soon) and tap into the generational one. Uranus controls our generational response to change and evolution. Not being a practicing astrologer, I’ve sought Mystic’s help with this one and she says that Uranus is a lot more powerful when it aspects an inner planet and it can’t be looked at in isolation.

Coco Chanel, often known as the supreme Leo (Sun and Venus) who re-invented womenswear in the 1920s actually has other major players in her birth chart. Chanel famously said that fashion is ‘(a) caterpillar by day, (a) butterfly by night’ because ‘there is nothing more comfortable than a caterpillar and nothing more made for love than a butterfly. We need dresses that crawl and dresses that fly’.

When they think of the 1920s, people generally prefer to remember the glitzy evening butterfly dresses inspired by Chanel’s 8th house Leo Venus and Sun and Lilith in Libra Midheaven, but forget about the humble caterpillar mode. This was so important because it brought about the chic monochrome daywear and supple sportswear that allowed women freedom of movement and gave them the appearance of dignity in their daily pursuits.

Chanel was a keen equestrienne (no surprise given her Saggo Ascendent) and disdained restrictive frou-frou clothes that wouldn’t let her keep up with the boys. Chanel’s Uranus Mercury conjunction in Virgo is also uncannily apt because she sought to make radical changes by focusing on practicality and fine details. It’s therefore no surprise that she blossomed during the First World War, when her small, simple monochrome hats didn’t get in the way of war work and enabled women to appear soberly chic in the face of mass death. Despite her Leo Sun and Venus Chanel abhorred big hats and hair and was one of the first to sport the 20s bob.

Madeleine Vionnet, known mainly for her slinky goddess gowns cut on the bias (cross) in the late 1920s and 30s was a triple Crab (Sun, Moon and Mars) with Neptune and Pluto in Taurus. She disdained obvious artifice and promoted timeless, classical femininity above androgyny and passing fads. It occurred to her that the cross-cutting technique used to make undergarments cling could be applied to outerwear for a sensuous effect that showcased the female body’s harmonious proportions. Though she was shy, Vionnet also had a heady Venus Uranus conjunction in Leo, and revolutionised eveningwear through dresses that evoked the wearer’s nude form beneath the fabric.

She was the mistress of sheer layers and liquid satins that evoked a second skin. Unsurprisingly, in the 1930s her ideas were adapted to make Hollywood screen stars smoulder. Vionnet, who was also paranoid about people copying her designs and used her Mercury Retro in Gemini ingenuity to devise ever more intricate cuts to ensure her brand’s exclusivity.

Hope you enjoyed the astro-history lesson,

Libra Dress Historian xx

 Katerina Pantelides is a dress historian and writer living in London. A Libra with Neptune rising, she is interested in the relationship between fashion, beauty and the occult.

If you have any astrological fashion dilemmas that you would like to be answered on the blog by our Libra Dress Historian, please send them to [email protected]

 

Image: Venetia Scott – W Magazine

 

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davidl
Pi

For the record, I think that Pattern Recognition’s protagonist, the one who hacks off levi’s labels and buys some exclusivo-non-label from obscure online thingy, is just as guilty of fashion one-upmanship as the biggest logo-whore around. well, Gibson is guilty of making it so. much like cooking one’s own dinner to be sure of the ingredients, if i was prone to anaphylaxis with my anna sui, i’d get my stuff made at a tailor or DIY 😉
[smug face.]

milleunanotte

Yes, when i first read her character early in the novel i felt something like that too, with a big sigh, but as the novel progressed i read it more as her instinctual anti-corporate-meddling. The turn of events, including the inability to trust plants (agents, not botanical) and especially the deepening weirdness of just how far and wide the conglomerate spread their tentacles, were all pitted against her true, organically formed personal networks, including her own deep resilience and fight, which won out in the end. Had she really bought name labels, like the one you mentioned, or spent on… Read more »

Pi

yes i get what you’re saying..
I did enjoy the book that is for sure.
and i can see what you mean, it is the sense of allegiance that brand stuff might signify?
x

milleunanotte

Mm, possibly brand allegiance, but that’s a conscious choice, and i found the novel spoke more about the hidden yet extensive power of brand purchase, particularly not knowing what those dollars are supporting. I guess an example is buying a popular brand of sneaker without realising that one’s dollar support of that brand then supports an economic paradigm of exploitation to maintain the corporate power, which might then extend to political affiliations and power plays. Soz, Pi, explanation kind of compacted because really didn’t want to slant thread as fashion design thing into the capitalist/consumption idea, but i do find… Read more »

Anonymous

Always hard to get into the nitty gritty of interesting discussions when reading and typing on a phone… Just to say I read this and would reply at length if I had the oomph..! Xx pi

catfish moon

Vote with your dollar. Love what you wear. Keep only what you wear. Don’t be excessive. Yesterday was my birthday. I bought 1 hat and 2 shirts at the thrift store. It was my first time buying clothes since the fall, which also happened at thrift store. I find the fashion industry overemphasized, underpaid workers a horrid thing. BUT….expression and comfort are important. Let us not forget something else ……Women were not always allowed to choose what they wore. My mother, born in the 40s, said in grade school she could not wear pants, only dresses and skirts. It was… Read more »

catfish moon

Have noticed different clothing eras in my life though.
Kataka sun …..velvet, satin, courdaroy, linen.
Pastel era…not sure what that was, moon and venus in 12th house????
Scorpio north node…..black, dark grey, more black, deep plum and fushia, skinny, no bra.
Now….Jupiter blew up my waist line so whatever fits! LOL! Jeans, dark colors still, huge breasts so shirts that cover boobs and belly. 🙂

milleunanotte

While i get your point about careful personal shopping and minimal consumption, this isn’t about brand names; that’s a modern consumption phenomenon. This is about design and cultural influence.

milleunanotte

Nice work, Mystic. This sort of subterfuge is lower intelligence and pure sneak. What always draws me to your site is the brilliant and eclectic artwork and art appreciation. Quite often hilarious choices of title and image, too. This post is an insightful astrological insight into artistic design influences. Anyone reading capitalism is having some basic reading comprehension issues. This is not an ad or exhortation to buy, sillies, it’s art history, and wonderfully written. It’s also about the often difficult and broad area of interpreting generational astro expression, and fashion design is immediately visible and understandable. This era is… Read more »

milleunanotte

(Sorry about the “insightful astrological insight” 🙂 )

Pegasus

How bizarre posting under different names & replying to yourself.
All negative responses & replies, totes boring.
Thanx for the expose Myst, keep us honest 🙂

Libra dress historian

Thank you Mystic for the expose- it’s always useful to know who we’re dealing with! And thanks to everyone else too for the supportive comments. Yes, I understand why some people see red the minute they see the word ‘fashion’ because the industry today does have a lot of problems with sustainability, labour exploitation and projecting ideals that are unattainable for most, as the norm. My supervisor Dr Rebecca Arnold, does a good job in addressing some of these issues in the following article: https://theconversation.com/new-technology-could-spell-the-end-of-the-size-zero-model-22607 But if you read my whole post instead of just the word ‘Chanel’, you’d see… Read more »

Pi

yes. it was pretty clear imo. (lovely to read too thank you.)
Fashion the business, owned by investment funds and conglomerates after the designer works it to a point where they can sell and move on, well everyone wants to make a buck don’t they. hmm. love love love LOVE fashion theory and history (and futures). the cult of personality not so much, except when it is to hear about personalities who have not disappeared up their own bum with self-importance [no one in mind in particular]. humility is key, perhaps?

Ms.

Not everyone on here is mentally adjusted..

Asta

Love your site (mostly) but when you post crap like this and get your pitbull of readers on here to fight your battles for you, yeah I’ll use diff names. So what? Expliotation is a very real problem in the fashion industry and I would expect you of all people to have more sense about this issue. Asta OUT

milleunanotte

Seriously, what’s your name, i’m my own bitch. You won’t understand that. I can read properly. What’s more, i can engage in conversations and disagree with real expressions of viewpoint without resorting to personal sniping and underhanded bitcherel. Which is why i don’t usu respond to anonymous posts. But i don’t forget…and i’ve seen u here before, same old same old. If we are defensive it’s because we respect Mystic’s work, including the building of this site. Those who’ve had readings all know how gifted she is. You would never have spent the money, because you’re too pusillanimous to be… Read more »

Veronica

Yeah Millie, I too recognise the flavour of this poster from before, very aggressive. Wants to prove a point, but doesn’t want to engage in a real dialogue. I didn’t think it was the real Kat, who is usually quite reasoned in her postings.

pi

Yes I was a bit confused too. That wasn’t Kat posting. Surely
~Pi

davidl

You take Manhattan ….

sweetpea

Ha. Its roots are steeped in Atlantis.

x

Gemyogi

Hi ‘Asta’
If you don’t like what mystic and regulars post here, YOU DON’T HAVE TO READ IT. srsly, just switch off. I think most ppl are aware of sweatshops and exploitation in fashion and indeed most big industries including meat, coffee, diamonds, mining, plastic shit made in china, whatever. You can post your views and opinions, but we are free to disagree. And post ours. If you are rude, you will normally be chastised. This is one of the more polite and inclusive forums I’ve encountered.

Gemyogi

Oh and Mystic doesnt ‘get’ us to fight battles for her. Paranoia much??

The Leo Socialite

“Pitbulls”? “Expliotation”?

I just read the article Libran Dress Designer linked to above, you should have a look.

the post was not about politics lol. In case you did not notice, this is an astrology site.

Sphinx

Woof!

Veronica

You know I really love pitbulls 🙂

Year of the Pheonix

I don’t know if you use a iPhone Asta but during workers protests at the factory in China around the simultaneous worldwide release of the 5 – 10 workers were shot and killed – and this is one protest we heard about – exploitation happens in a lot of industries we all buy into

Anonymous

Huh?? We know this . Don’t we? Ironically, disasters such as the factory collapse in Bangladesh that killed hundreds was making clothes for stores such as, but maybe not specifically, America’s wal-mart. Australian markets too no doubt. Not exactly Vionnet, or the kind of realm that was being talked about here.
Pi…

Ms.

several people have very eloquently put the point of the actual post to you and you refuse to listen like a petulant small child. No one here is supporting any of the arguments you claim, agreed with your point but tried to put the incredibly obvious differences of the post point and the argument to you and have bothered to very politely answered your posts.

grow up

davidl

Love it when there is a wrangle and I’m not involved 🙂

She does sounds young and fiesty and I do get that, but sheeples ?
That’s like a red rag round these parts. Yeehaaa !

fallen angel

I love this post.. I’m with the Leo Socialite on Spanx et al.. I mean, wasn’t that first Bridget Jones’ enough of a lesson as to why it ought not be worn at all? I certainly don’t feel sexy if I have to bolt every curve down to fit into anything.. unless the restriction had some kind of bondage value but seriously 🙂 I love clothes, the Frugens fondly call my closet Narnia..but no I don’t have thousand dollar anythings in there though it certainly gives you a good snapshot of what having Uranus in your first and a pretty… Read more »

milleunanotte

Yes i think understanding the Venusian contribution is a nice counterpoint to the destructive aspects of wartime.

MutableMabel

I have found all of your contributions to be interesting food for thought, Libra Dress Historian. I have a Libra stellium and it is important for me to get to the bottom of how and why I present to the world a certain way. How can I live my life properly if I don’t look as much like myself as possible? Has anyone ever read the William Gibson book “Pattern Recognition?” The heroine has literal fashion allergies. She sands the labels off her Levi’s and orders her sweaters from some English boys’ school supplier. Everything has to be black, white,… Read more »

Charles

LOL that is actually a thing. There’s a brand called Muji, short for Mujirushi Ryouhin, “unbranded products.” They sell high quality products that are generic and iconic. I wish they had a store near me. I go to extreme lengths to buy products without prominent logos and that crap.

MutableMabel

Yesss! Muji is the best thing ever!

Year of the Phoenix

I LOVE muji!

catfish moon

Scorpio! I have Scorpio north node. I love black and grey. Also dark browns. No white though.

calypso

I think Scorps would be into the No Logo thing too, huh? Can’t stand a logo – neither can my Aqua son.

Yes to Muji!

Scorpbot

True! I go out of my way to not wear a labels. Who wants to be a walking advertisement! Gross! And I hate those blingy sunglasses with the massive logos on the side. Yuk!

Cap ascendent – discretion is key!

calypso

Ikr? you pay them to advertise their product? na-a. Also no to sunnies bling! Which seems anti-Leonic, although I do have the full 5th house and I feel like the posters above do about art deco.

catfish moon

I despise logos. Totally agree about scorpios and logos.

milleunanotte

Yes i read it and was convinced that the heroine was Piscean like William Gibson, and self. I cut labels from inside my clothing (they itch and cut my skin) and i do not buy visible logos.

I read this after Mystic referenced it here on a particular post. Mystic introduced me to William Gibson. And thank you for the reminder that I have another book of his to enjoy now too, purchased a couple of weeks ago.

Ms.

I cut logos off everything, scrub and colour them in when I see them, always.

Aquarianne

So what caused the radical eruption of minis, hot pants then maxis in the 60/70s with all the colour, thru 80s insanity, collapsing into todays complete mismash with nothing more cohesive on the streets than ‘hide me’ shapeless black?

Anonymous

Neptune. In Scorpio, then Sag, then Cap in the decades you mention, then Aqua (subculture looks like grunge and goth, individual dressing) and now Pisces quite recently so the look may still be emerging. Or may be confused. 😉 Also ‘hide me’ black does seem appropriate for Neptune in Pisces, going back underwater…

piscorp

A lot of pressure to fit obese people

Ms.

lol

Pi

disagree, if it’s worth commenting on a jab at obesity. I am not a fan of all-black (except when I can’t help it when the moon is in Scorp, ha) but I understand it. a fleeting 2 seconds of thought for me might describe it as a way to take oneself out of visual competition with the world around us. whether that is because we wish to remain a shadow, or we are overwhelmed with the outside world, or we cbf picking a colour , in conclusion, black. Black is a universe in itself. love pi.

Aquarianne

Would love your quick response Libra historian re Uranus change over these decades.

Year if the Phoenix

I think the 80’s were Uranus in Cap – power shoulders and corporate with an structured asymmetric Japanese underbelly

The late 50s early 60’s were Uranus in Scorp (please stop me if I’m wrong!) an era I particularly love – tight sweater steamy with a modernist twist

Pi

uranus in scorp would have started mid 70s, ended i guess v early 80s?

the amazing pisces scientist has jupiter uranus conjunct in Sadge, positive he has mars moon venus in aries rising. he is just divine. taken these days, alas, and with.. shall we say healthy sense of self, but divine.

all of this makes sense

Ms.

most profit turned on garment manufacturing from all the lack of design features to sew.

If your sew team can bang out a dress with little to no design features, you can push for it to be done in 7 min (they time this) which increases your profit margins by how many you can do in a day to sell on. The more features and intricacy to sew, the longer it takes and the less you will make as a multi billion dollar corporation pushing your makers to bang this out.

Scorporation, Inc.

This pic is DOPE! 😛 omg & it’s all the same colors as a painting I’ve been working on. Loving this hi fi Uranian vibe channeled visually, in whatever medium!

Libra takeover in the zap zone

This is so interesting! I am also fascinated by how our sense of personal style is related to our identity (astrology chart). I have been trying to imcorporate my north node (Leo) into my style sense, though it is a challenge because I don’t have any connections there except a Chiron square. So Leo is new territory for me. But I did wear a beautiful statement yellow/gold (leo color) necklace to a recent job interview, so i think I am getting there!

Anyway, looking forward to future posts. Interesting stuff!

virgobitch

This seems like a bunch of hot air. No one cares about Chanel unless you are vapid and boring

Anon

LOL. Agree. It’s so 80’s

SweetPea

Yup, 80’s materialism… Haven’t we EVOLVED from this dribble??

sweetpea

hey guys, the key word is “historian”…It’s also an astrology lesson.

Hell the fuq ello?

sweetpea

Remember how inate it was for libran/toro moon granddaughter to design her own fashion looks. She has a sewing machine and is making little bags to sell.

She has aqua Uranus conjunct her mc and wants to be a teacher however. She said her classroom would be awesome. So sweet..please world, don’t smash these kids dreams.

She’s 12. And a straight A student, is in leadership class and already ran for class president. I think her mc I’d definitely s bonus.

What’s a granny to do if she can’t boast?

sweetpea

Is definitely a bonus….

Think it would be cool if the world were run by Venusian uranians.

Pi

I love how uranian / aquan types are drawn to teaching . Pi

sweetpea

Yes, she has both Aqua MC and Uranus there conjunct. Child has three grand trines in her chart. Her Sun is conjunct my NN in Libra so naturally she is special to me.

catfish moon

Cutie! Awesome for your granddaughter. Sewing is a very useful skill. I sold bags and hats to pay for traveling and more fabric in my early 20s.
My 13 year old daughter loves fashion and wants to be a fashion designer(for now who knows later!) But it isn’t about names or cost. She shops at the thrift store. She has had me showing her for years how I buy things at thrift stores and sometimes tailor them to fit my body. It’s about creativity, design, expression. She knows nothing about designer names. I just adore that she is creative.

piscorp

I encouraged my daughter to buy what she likes to encourage her own original style and not be a label snob… she had her eyes opened in Melb and now kind of thinks that I have betrayed her buy not telling her about crappy labels but she worked it out for herself yay

sweetpea

So cool guys. Love it. When I thought about it, Aries, Leo rising sis with moon in Libra is a beautiful seamstress.

She made her own wedding dress but what’s more, she would make lined jackets and such, tailor fitted to her only. And she put in her own designed by labels.

Ah gee, if I can, I will link some pics with libran big sis with Aries little’n.

sweetpea

A zz duo that defy the gods. Lol

No, just think that with my libran gdaughter’s 12 degree Sun on my 13 deg NN..opposite my point of fortune 12 degrees, sun 11, Medusa 10….she is like what I call an antidote energy in the same way I call certain energies.

Libra Dress Historian

Thanks for the compliments guys! By caterpillar, Chanel didn’t mean that you should wear a chrysalis, just that you should be comfortable and sensible. So if you’re in blue jeans and a white t-shirt now, you’re doing the Caterpillar look, alternatively, if you’re in a little red dress you’re a Butterfly.

Year of the Phoenix

Thanks for the response! How right you are re Chanel and freedom, lived the analogy of the butterfly/cocoon

Must say I love and the deep seated beauty of Vionnet and her fair trade ethos! Viva la Venus in Leo

Me Virgo Sun/Pluto/SN conj Uranus/Merc Libra 1st house – Venus in Leo 😉

Year of the Phoenix

Oh AND Jupitor in Libra 14d conj everything ;and ZAPPING) trine my Leo Venus -swoon bring on the big love!

The Leo Socialite

I love this, how i miss this style of insightful commentary in what passes for fashion media these days. God i sound 1000 years old. It is also a timely reminder of just how far we have come. i was one of the FEW people decrying Spanx and the control top pants being hailed as a revolution or improvement a few years back. We cannot go back to corsetry! Women must be allowed to move and breathe freely, fashion should not constrict, it should liberate. i also loved mystics post on elsa schiaparelli NOT sure about caterpillar by day butterfly… Read more »

sweetpea

Lol…’Onesie’ as a chrysalis…

Anonymous

I was thinking it meant more pragmatic style, work wear etc. Sans sequins, can clamber over a fence (ok walk 5 blocks) if needed, no delicate fabrics to snag.. unlike butterfly evening wear.

sweetpea

I was thinking of those things babies wear…That was my visual anyway.

Ms.

Great work 🙂

We could chat for hours. I love the idea of a libra dress historian. How perfect. Do you do fashion charts? hehe 🙂

What degree is your libra sun pls?

Libra Dress Historian

17 degrees Libra, 9th house, so Venusian with wanderlust! I don’t do charts, but do give advice 😉

Ms.

Cool. I am fascinated by expression and presentation and astrology, do you have a blog or are you just an entity of the world?

Scorporation, Inc.

I think fashion charts would be stellar! I’d get one, LDH.

Sunny

I love the Art Deco period and especially the jewelry. I would rather have a well made Art Deco estate piece than something new. Perhaps the Uranus in Leo generation on my Leo ascendant is the reason for my excitement about it. I enjoy your posts Katerina and look forward to the one on North Node.

LeoEscapeArtist

yes, love me my art deco (leo rising.leo sun.leo mercury)…am also looking forward to post on nn.

Electric Eel Libran

I love these fashion posts! I adore Vionnet’s work.

LeoEscapeArtist

yesyes 🙂

Kat

These fashion posts are horrible. Yes lets glorify luxury goods that are made by children for pennies in the Third World.

Wake UP sheeple

Aa

Seriously this is inane nonsense. These designers make a killer profit from exploitation. I can’t believe this is even on this website

Year of the Phoenix

Vionnet was a seamstress from the age of 12 or 14 and her workers had a onsite dentist and health insurance as well as a child care centre – I agree there is a lot of exploration in the garment industry but Vionnet was streets ahead in workers and womens rights

Veronica

Kat, I understand your stance on luxury fashion goods, the LMVH multi-headed multinational advertising warship of greed and most particularly their promotion of fur as a luxury item makes me every bit of my blood boil. ‘Luxury Fashion’ has become a commodity a bit like arms trading IMO. BUT, the likes of Vionnet, and The actual Gabrielle Chanel, Balenciaga, Schiaparelli, St Laurent et al were truly artists, truly iconic shapers of fashion of their time, and by extension captured the zeitgeist of generations. As a young girl I read my mothers books on fashion and all her vogue mags, and… Read more »

fallen angel

I so concur Veronica!

Ms.

Thank you

Aquasunbird

Please read the history of Vionnet, I studied her at university and her cutting methods, majored in bias cut middle years. Vionnet was actually very idealistic about her workers being fairy treated, and provided dental care to them. Interestingly there was some ambiguity to her sexual orientation, and also tragedy with the loss of a very young child. She was not motivated by greed. Not all exclusive designers wish to exploit those who produce for them, and many designers view their creations as providing liberation, hope, and inspiration to individuals. Fashion is intrinsically tied up with politics, economics and is… Read more »

calypso

also, a $3 KMart T-shirt ain’t helpin anyone either….not even those who get such a “bargain”, and that’s about as far from luxury as you can get.

piscorp

If you buy Australian designers made in Australia you are supporting fair practice. Choose well and buy less.

Libra dress historian

Thank you for posting this history of Vionnet’s working practices. She really did set a precedent for fair working practices and was particularly sensitive to mothers’ needs and provided a creche for their children. Must be the triple Crab in action!

aquasunbird

Thank you, I was fortunate in that the head of our department had studied in france, emigrating to Australia and had mentioned to us in her own words how students there learned to perfectly slip thread in place of the warp / grain line. This woman was elusive, wise, thoroughly decent and professional, modest and really oriented towards knowledge of skill. There would a generation of design folk in a shifting industry indebted to her professionalism. Sadly she retired and took with her much none of us could ever encompass, share. It is a pleasure to hear of your insights… Read more »

Asta

Please, these poor excuses for artists have been hijacked by corporate exploitation. Any attempt at justification of this fact is just pure stupidity

anon

You could say that about any form of art. Clearly the economic system is the common denominator, not the individual artists, so why do you feel the need to detract from their accomplishments and legacy?

Veronica

If you mean that there is a trend for long -established couture design houses to be bought up by conglomerates, have new designers installed and then trade on the name and the image and the history, without living up to the original spirit then yes, absolutely.

But it doesn’t take away from the beauty and inspiration of the creativity that went before. If you cannot recognise this, then perhaps you might have something to learn from the historian.

Ms.

well put

fallen angel

Again, touche.

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