The evening gown is an invention of the twentieth century. In reality, dressing entirely differently for evening only began within the 1920s. In previous centuries, dress styles had been nearly the same for day and night. Then, as happens with fashion, the women changed their minds. Although they hankered after a sensible type of dress for daytime, they wished to reassert their femininity once dark. The evening dress got its cachet from the very fact that as skirts for day shortened, skirts for evening remained long. Either slinky or floaty, a glamorous evening gown was ‘de rigueur’ for a girl of fashion. How else might she brag the diamonds that the novel Gentleman Prefer Blonds had convinced her were nearly her birthright?
Fall and winter fashion trends