By: Amelie Mag
In our ever changing society, fashion can not be left aside. Everything alters and modifies to satisfy an increasing demanding variety of customers. This is the reason why traditionally manufactured clothes and items are now mass produced, suffering transformations from one season to another to become fashionable. Two representative examples are Guayabera shirts and Hawaiian shirts.
Guayabera shirts were worn for the first time in Latin America, being very popular among men from Mexico and Cuba. Hawaiian shirts on the other hand have their origin in the island from where they borrowed their name. Both Guayabera shirts and Hawaiian shirts can be now found worldwide, from United States of America to different regions in Asia and even Africa. But what makes the Guayabera shirts or the Hawaiian shirts so popular? One logical explanation would be their originality and the freshness they bring in our dull lives. The extravagant colors of the Hawaiian shirts and the unique designs of the Guayabera shirts - this is what attracts an increasing number of persons to buy them.
Originally, the Guayabera shirts had four pockets, two lower pockets and two upper pockets, each with its own button. Some other particular characteristics of the Guayabera shirts are the two rows of alforzas which run on the front of the shirt, over the pockets and on the back of it. The original color of the Guayabera shirts was white, but the customers' desire of new things influenced the style and now there is a multitude of colors that you can choose from. Another modification brought to the Guayabera shirts in time was the number of pockets on them. Nowadays model shirts have two pockets, since the former role of the pockets to carry as many belongings as necessary has been replaced by wallets and bags. The Guayabera shirts have been adapted this way to the present requirements of the customers or transformed by the fashion designers, but the original form with its model and color can still be found in the areas where it was invented. In Latin America, the Guayabera shirts are worn on a daily basis, at the office, while shopping, at a party. However, in the rest of the world, they are still an extravagance proper for special occasions.
It's the same with the Hawaiian shirts' case. The bright colors, the interesting printings make the Hawaiian shirts something to be proud of, something that differentiates you from the rest of the people, but the initial printings of the Hawaiian shirts have been modified. The truth is you can not find an infinite combination of sunny beaches and palm trees, the two symbolic images of the shirt so, in time, this kind of drawings has had to be replaced with others, not that "Hawaiian" but still bringing a holiday note specific birds, faces, sports related with the beach and with the summer time. However, the distinctive element remains the same as it distinguishes the Hawaiian shirts from others: the powerful, exotic colors.
Even the fabrics have changed: initially, the Guayabera shirts, as well as the Hawaiian shirts were 100% cotton. Of course, cotton has its own advantages as it offers coolness, but the shirts' price decreases once the cotton is replaced with polyester, linen, polyester-cotton blends or some other fiber combination. Sometimes these fabrics are preferred to the original cotton specific to the Guayabera shirts and to the Hawaiian shirts, money not being the only reason. The polyester shirts are easily ironed, easily cleaned, sometimes they are even more comfortable.
Celebrities wearing Guayabera shirts made the journey to popularity easier for this sort of clothing because these high profile persons had a major influence on the public manifested not only in opinions, but in style as well. People like President George Bush or the basketball player Shaquille O'Neal wore this kind of shirts showing the entire world their uniqueness. For the Hawaiian shirts, things were smoother. The Hawaiian shirts were specifically designed for the visitors of the island and they became popular because the locals encouraged people to wear them.
No matter your style or your personality, these kinds of shirt shouldn't miss from your wardrobe. You never know when you may have the opportunity to wear them. There is always a specific time and place where the Hawaiian shirts (for example) can be appropriate. Besides being very comfortable, their easily recognizable style can transform your attitude, influence the persons around you and make you feel better about yourself, prouder to own such an original item. You don't even have to worry about the shirts becoming obsolete. Old original Hawaiian shirts for example are now sold for hundreds of dollars, so who knows? Maybe these shirts will value a fortune in time. Anyhow, they are just the right investment: you cannot go out of style wearing Hawaiian or Guayabera shirts. These are only two examples of items traditionally worn in specific parts of the globe, but they are not the only ones. You just have to search, explore and invent your own style.
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