There’s a little something in every woman that draws us to the bohemian, magical, mysterious and colorful world of a gypsy. The endless trinkets and prints that make up not only a gypsy’s wardrobe but also her living spaces tell the tale of a life filled with amazing travels and experiences; and every piece in its own right seems to have a story to tell, a mystery to carry with it. When we think of a gypsy, we tend to envision a nomadic woman who defies convention and most likely dabbles in a bit of fortunetelling of some sort, and it’s this mystical and empowering quality that keeps the influence of gypsy alive in fashion.
With the fundamental nature of a gypsy being that of a lady who travels and collects pieces along the way, her style can be influenced by many cultures and comes from whatever is available at that moment; It’s very much like a true-thrifter’s lifestyle. We go to a thrift store not knowing exactly what we might get, but almost always leave with something to add to our closet or home. Even if we don’t love it, we normally leave with at least one thing- almost as a souvenir. We travel, we thrift, we DIY what we thrift to conform to our daily lives: We are the modern day gypsy, minus the crystal ball (unless you count those times you experimented with fortunetelling and tarot cards at slumber parties)
Historically, the first women to be considered gypsies were those who migrated from India and scattered throughout Europe and North America, and if there is any style that seems to take precedence in a gypsy’s wardrobe, it is that of an Indian persuasion. Batik fabrics, silks, vibrant prints and elaborate jewelry are staple items for a classic gypsy look, and it has made a major resurgence in the fashion world recently. The runway has been covered with it, with everyone turning a little bit gypsy on us: From Missoni’s vibrant hues, exorbitant ruffles and head-to-toe fringe to Etro’s geometric rendition incorporating mixed prints, colors and textures with sharp lines and angles upon angles. Moschino went gyspy with elaborate head pieces, huge gold tambourine earrings and eccentric layers, and Kirrily Johnston made waves on the spring 2012 runway with her matching headscarf-maxi dress combinations and oversized geometric, alien-worthy bib necklaces. Pucci, though, takes the crown with cropped lace camis, gigantic ornate gold earrings, full bold-print maxi skirts and prints galore with a heavy Indian influence.
I’ve always had “gypsy” in mind anytime I thrift for my personal wardrobe, and it has influenced my style for years and will for years to come; When it comes to thrifting with this style in mind think: world traveler, elaborate Indian prints, soft rayons and silks, pigments so vivid they make your eyes hurt, head wraps and umpteen pieces of jewelry to wear from head to toe. I made my looks of-the-moment by throwing on space-age accessories and feminine platforms, but it can be done so many ways with no clear rules other than: Too much is never too much. That is, after all, the gypsy way.
By Whitney S Williams
Photos by Gabriel Gould
Runway Photos via Fashionising, Vogue.com, Style.com