For fans who were not able to attend my Celebration Orlando panel in person, I will be posting the full slideshow and transcript online. Today’s post is part 2 of a 9 part series – stay tuned for a full video of my panel 🙂
You can read Part 1: Collecting apparel and accessories as a hobby here.
Part 2: The history of women’s Star Wars fashion
The history of women’s Star Wars fashion is now far too broad, and would be a very time-consuming presentation, so I will cover just a few of the significant milestones and stand-out companies that have supplied to the fans over the recent years.
One of the first ever Star Wars fashion items, and some of my personal favourites are the Weingeroff necklaces from 1977. These are fantastic sculpts and I wear mine quite frequently even though I know they are vintage. This range also included items like hairclips, stud earrings, dangle earrings, rings, and charm bracelets. Thankfully these items are still fairly easy to find cheaply on the secondary market – though the painted ones like the Stormtrooper are a little harder to find in good condition (un-chipped).
Wallace Berrie took over the jewellery license for The Empire Strikes Back products in 1980. Their range included some character necklaces, as well as a range of rings. This range uses enamel pictures rather than 3-D sculpts of the 1977 range, but the accuracy and detail is still very good.
In 1983 the license changed hands again to Adam Joseph who released several different styles of necklaces. There were the gold-tone text necklaces and 3D sculpted character pendants – the latter includes some of my all-time favourites such as a Salacious Crumb necklace! I love the fact that somebody chose him from a list of characters to turn into a fashion item!
They also released a small range of 3-D sculpted painted necklaces, though these are a little hard to find in good condition these days, as they are a little prone to paint chipping.
One of my particular favourite brands in the growth of Star Wars fashion is of course the Australian company Black Milk Clothing. First getting attention for their cosplay-style R2-D2 swimsuit, their later licensed collection included many bodycon dresses, leggings and body suits.
This collection really stood out to me because it was completely targeted for women and really showed that women’s Star Wars fashion could be more than T-shirts, and could be sexy and figure-hugging. I was quite sad to see the end of their Star Wars collection, I would have loved to have seen what else they could have done.
Rock Rebel released a range of Star Wars necklaces and bags in 2012. These were very popular at conventions around the time and you can still spot their bright and fun glitter handbags at conventions today. Their Rebel and Imperial symbol necklaces were bolder than a lot of other designs available at the time. One of my favourites is the rhinestone Star Wars logo necklace, I still wear it quite frequently.
Of course it wouldn’t be a history of women’s Star Wars fashion without mention of Her Universe. Lauching in 2009, they started out with t-shirts primarily, but have branched out into a massive array of fashion styles, including sweatshirts, dresses, skirts, bags, jewelry, and leggings. At Celebration Anaheim they released the gorgeous Hoth and Bespin themed pinup style dresses, which are some of my favourites. I also have a soft spot for Star Wars fashion with sequins, as it really distinguishes them from printed men’s tops (plus it sparkles!). I couldn’t possibly fit in all the photos of Her Universe items that I would want to here, but stay tuned as I’ve included more in my later slides.
To be continued in Part 3: The rise of companies producing women’s Star Wars fashion items.