A Brief History of Velvet

Dating back to the 13th Century, velvet was first made in China. However, Cairo in Egypt became the first mass-producing hub for velvet, and Italy was the first European country to start fabricating it. Back in those days, velvet was made from silk, making it a luxury that the middle class could only dream of.
Seduced by the softness and lustre of this piece of cloth, Europeans made velvet an irreplaceable part of their lives. The European Palaces were adorned with soft, lustrous and rich velvet. Not only for gowns and crowns but also for furniture, carpets, wallpapers, presents and ring boxes, velvet became a signature of royalty and nobility.
However, with the advent of the industrial revolution, people started developing the expertise to make synthetic velvet. This innovation, fuelled with the heavy machinery of the industrial revolution, made large scale production of velvet at affordable prices possible, making the dream of velvet come true for the middle class. From the 1900s, velvet ruled the fashion industry and was the first choice when it came to furniture. By 1970, it was the first pick among most celebrities. During this time velvet was all the rage, with catwalks, magazines, and pop icons, all showcasing velvet fashion. Fast-forward to the present day, about half a century; it is still a part of the Queen’s Crown, Major Fashion Shows, and Edwardian Furniture. With the advancement of technology, various forms of velvet have emerged. Some of the popular ones are:
Crushed velvet
Panne velvet
Embossed velvet
Plain velvet
Stretch velvet
Pile-on-pile velvet

Though velvet is associated with western culture, it comes from the East and has maintained its popularity there as well. With a maroon velvet lehenga being the dream wedding dress for most Indian Brides, and velvet in prismatic colours being the best bet for most guests.


Winter: When things get Velvety
Just a touch of this angelic piece is enough to make you realize, why is it all the rage during winter. And, honestly, being a velvet fan, we can write a whole article about why it’s the only thing you need during winter, but here let’s keep it crisp. So, here are the top four reasons why Velvet is the perfect match for winters.

It’s Warm: You don’t want to be one of those people who dress up to the nines, but then just can’t get out of the house cause it’s freezing, right? Velvet not only promises you a stylish look but also keeps you warm and cosy inside.

Captures the vibe of the season: Winter is the season for serious dark colour monochromes. Dark or neutral shades like black, grey, blue, off white and peach paired with contrasting colours, steals the look. For instance, a white top paired with black flared jeans makes you look serene and dominating at the same time. You could also go for less contrasting colours like a black top with a grey skirt. The same goes for pastels and bright colours. Just don’t pick more than two colours, and make sure that they contrast and compliment well.

Endless Styling Possibilities: From soft hues of pastel to bright colours, there’s a colour for everyone.

It can be elegant and casual too: A sleek black dress and you’re ready for a formal occasion. A velvet crop top over a pair of flared jeans and you’re all set to hang out with friends. A baggy velvet top with PJs to start your weekend on the right note.

Monk & Mei’s New VELVET Collection - Afreen
As a toast to this new year and the ongoing wedding season, Monk & Mei’s new velvet collection promises you an elegant and graceful look. Western dresses like capes and cowls are perfect for the new year vibes, kaftans and palazzos are more suited for North Indian Weddings. Wishing you a prosperous and dazzling year ahead <3 in these elegant fusion pieces in rich velvet and brocade. Do not miss the embroidered pearl laden dupattas & stoles that will add charm to your personality.


Trivia Time 

Did You Know?

  • King Richard II of England directed in his will that his body should be clothed in velvet in 1399.
  • Queen Elizabeth II wears dyed velvet robes and regalia for most formal ceremonies!
  • Onychophora is a worm that looks and feels like velvet, and because of this, it is also called the velvet worm.
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