According to my Facebook feed, my Twitter stream, and my Pinterest account, I’m clearly not the only Downton Abbey fangirl out there. The surprise BBC Masterpiece Classic period piece slash British soap opera hit has everyone talking—about the jaw-dropping moments (have no fear, folks, I’m only halfway through season 2—no spoilers here), about the compelling upstairs/downstairs storylines, and, of course, about the fashion.
In fact, many designers are using Downton Abbey (and the soon-to-be-released The Great Gatsby) as style inspiration for their 2013 clothing lines and for their runway shows.
The timeline of the Downton Abbey sees the Crawley family moving though the beginning of the 20th century—from the stifling post-Edwardian corseted style of the 19-teens to a more loose, fashion-forward flapper-esque 1920s. Women are becoming a bit more liberated and modern in more than just their corsets. They are experimenting with drop-waists, looser fabrics, beads and feathers, oversized flowered hats, and gasp! harem pants.
Whatever decade we are in, we can be sure of one thing—those Crawley sisters sure have enviable wardrobes.
Incorporating some of the wonderful styles and silhouettes of the early 1900s England into your modern 2013 wardrobe—without looking like you are going to a Hallowen party—is a lot easier than you might think. Look for soft colors—grey, sage, white, pale pink. Intricate beading and interesting lacework are important too. Pearls and drop earrings are always essential, as is a great fitted jacket and good pair of Mary Janes. Pay attention to the fabrics and the shapes; you can never go wrong with drapey and dropped.
And, of course, you may want to work on your English accent too.
1. Bow-Accent Pumps, $25.50, YesStyle
2. Knotted Pearlescent Necklace, $8.80, Forever 21
3. Lasercut Sheath, $228, Anthropologie
4. Free People Top, $98, Bloomingdale’s
5. Nataya Black Swan Dress, $189, Romance of Yesteryear
6. Grey Gardens Dress, 97.99, Modcloth
7. The Pearl I Love Headband, $11.99, Modcloth
8. Nataya Crystal Vintage Top, $122, Wardrobe Shop
9. Schoolboy Blazer in Velvet, $178, J.Crew
10. Nude Bead Dress, $114, Frock and Frill
11. Givenchy ‘Envy’ Drop Earrings, $32.16, Nordstrom
Want more ways to Dress Like Your Television? Check out how to dress like Jess from New Girl, Carrie from The Carrie Diaries, the ladies of Nashville, Mindy from The Mindy Project, Emily from Revenge, Annie from Community and Trudy from Mad Men.