Nothing says warm like a pair of gloves. The aristocrats of accessories, gloves were once worn only by kings, princes and churchmen as a visible symbol of their wealth and authority. Their elite image endured for centuries and carried over to the tradition that expected a woman to wear gloves for all occasions.
The sea change of social values that followed the 1960’s included the end of the glove culture. Now worn primarily to keep worn, a great looking pair of gloves can still pack a fashion wallop. The right glove anchors the sleeve of a coat or jacket providing an opportunity to express confidence and personality.
The Long and Short of Gloves
There are basically five styles:
* Shorty — wrist length styles with an opening on the side or center. Some shorties have small buttons or snap closures.
* Slip-On — extend 2-3 inches past the wrist so that there is no gap between the glove and the rest of your sleeve.
*Gauntlet — designed with an insert that flares above the wrist. These dramtic gloves can be decorated with fringe along the lower edge.
*Mouquetaire- long formal gloves that may close with a long row of little buttons. Depending on the length, they can contain between 8-24 buttons.
*Fingerless — can keep the hand fairly warm yet allow fingers to function. Some styles have removed just the tops of the fingers while other long fingerless gloves are a long wooly tube that slip over hand and reach almost to the elbow.
The newest styles of glove features a rubbery tip on forefinger and thumb that allows you to use a smart phone without taking off your gloves– a happy marriage of fashion and technology. The Rolls Royce of gloves are made by Portolano and are gorgeous comnintions of colors and styles. Usually they are over $100 a pair, you can find a fantastic affordable selection of Portolano gloves on ebay.
Its very easy to stuff a pair of old gloves into your pocket as you leave the house. I like to use gloves to add a little flair, especially on a grey/wet day. I wear a pair of thin black leather gloves with my red raincoat and slip on a pair of pigskin driving gloves with my camel hair coat. I just found a black and white tweed coat at a vintage clothing expo and I love it with a pair of hot pink leather gloves and a long black velvet muffler. Do you have a favorite glove and coat combo?