Can you remember a time that boho wasn’t a fashion option in the shops or online? Us neither. We love that finding a cute new plus size boho dress is super easy - as long as you can find a store that has your size/ fit and all that. (ok so maybe not so easy) Pro tip, check out our boho dresses edit!
This got us thinking, where exactly does bohemian come from?
Get ready to take a deep dive into fashion history as we learn more about boho roots. For even more boho chic inspo read our top tips for how to dress boho style and the latest in the Insyze investigates series; is boho cultural appropriation?
A Brief History of Boho
Boho style, short for bohemian, is alternative fashion that became super popular in the 60s and 70s. As more than just a fashion trend, boho is carefree, artistic and liberating which goes hand in hand with the expressive movements of that time and hippie culture.
The French Revolution
But it doesn’t just stop there. Some say that you can trace boho roots all the way back to the French Revolution (1799) where mass poverty meant that people had literally no choice but to wear well-worn clothes and hand-me-downs. Leading to a kind of counterculture lifestyle that was more about creative individualism than the stuff you owned.
This was a springboard for artists to express themselves through the clothes they wore and we love that this was often in super eccentric ways.
The Romani People
Another theory is that boho is actually from the Bohemia region of the Czech Republic. For the nomadic Romani people it was all about living an unconventional lifestyle and rejecting materialism and social ideals. We love their rebellious spirit and carefree way of living.
The Aesthetic Movement
By incorporating medieval, gypsy and oriental inspired designs and embroidery boho fashion came into its own as something that we’d probably recognise today.
At around the same time, mainstream fashions were big on corsets and crinolines. The Bohemians probably took one look at this and were like ‘no thanks’ and wore loose fitting dresses instead. - We know what we’d prefer!
Boho and Nature
While we are loving to see how sustainable fashion has recently become a lot more mainstream, for boho this has often always been the case. Boho and nature have deep roots and you can see that in the use of natural prints, patterns and dyes used in some of your favorite boho inspired pieces.
Today boho fashion is still big on liberation and freely expressing who you are through the clothes that you wear. To get the boho look choose relaxed and effortless silhouettes in neutral tones, mix of textures and casual accessories.
Boho is a trend that's always changing and evolving, often influenced by artists, writers and alternative culture of the time. So when you ask where does bohemian come from? Well, there isn’t just a straightforward answer. There are many influences and inspirations.