10 Must Know Fashion Terms

Take a look at some of my must know fashion terms. You may have heard them before but it’s important to have a thorough understanding of what each one means. This will help you on your way to sounding like a true fashionista.

HOMEWORK: Think of one more fashion term you think is a must know and share it in the comments below.



  1. The “New Look”

The term used to describe Christian Dior’s first Spring/Summer collection shown in 1947. The silhouettes consisted of a nipped-in waist and a full skirt falling below mid-calf length, which emphasized the bust and hips.

  1. Cravat

The origin of the modern day “necktie.” A cravat was a piece of fabric, usually lace, worn around the neck by men. It originated in 17th century Croatia.

  1. Bias Cut

The “bias-cut” is a technique used by designers for cutting clothing to utilize the greater stretch in the bias or diagonal direction of the fabric, thereby causing it to accentuate body lines and curves and drape softly.

  1. Bustle

A pad or framework expanding and supporting the fullness and drapery of the back of a woman’s skirt or dress

  1. Peplum

A short section of fabric attached to the waistline of a blouse, jacket, or dress giving added fullness.

  1. Appliqué

A cutout decoration fastened to a larger piece of material. The term is borrowed from French and means “applied” or “thing that has been applied.”

  1. Haute Couture

French term for “high sewing.” It refers to the creation of exclusive custom-fitted clothing.

  1. Prêt-à-Porter

French term for “ready to wear.” It refers to clothing that is factory made and sold in standardized and finished conditions.

  1. Ruching

Today the term is used to describe the effect of gathering a large piece of fabric to form a rippled effect.

  1. Sample Garment

The original prototype of the garment created before large quantities are made. For today’s standards the sample is usually made in a size 2 or 4.


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