What is it about the ancient world and its mythology that continues to inspire? Ever since Shakespeare took Greek and Roman tragedies and translated them into iconic plays, high and popular culture has been littered with references to the ancients, from cinematic blockbusters like Troy and Spartacus, to the Greek lettering and toga parties of an American frat house.
The fashion of the ancient Greeks has also provided ample inspiration for designers. The ‘Greek Goddess’ dress (empire line, pleated and floor length) has been replicated on the catwalk and red carpet for seasons now (it’s a super-flattering silhouette, especially if you’ve got a baby bump!), and we can’t remember a summer where leather gladiator sandals weren’t a chic alternative to flip flops.
Maybe it’s the abundance of strong, fierce women in Greek mythology. For every simpering beauty like Helen of Troy, you have Artemis, Goddess of the hunt, who demanded to her daddy (head God Zeus) that she wouldn’t be married off, and Athena, the goddess of wisdom, a great beauty known for her role as judge, diplomat, and mediator.
Omani-born designer BodyAmr (a regular on the London fashion week circuit) continuously uses Greek style draping, designing glamorous eveningwear for ‘goddesses and warrior women’. It clearly works – Juliette Lewis, Claudia Schiffer and Kylie Minogue are all fans.
Plus, ancient women knew how to accessorize. Who hasn’t spent a history lesson or trip a museum poring over the incredible jewelry when they should be focusing on battles and dates?
So how do you unleash your inner Greek goddess without looking like you’re off to a toga party? Look to some of the most stylish interpretations of the Greek myths on the big screen – the late Elizabeth Taylor in Cleopatra, Diane Kruger and Angelina Jolie in Alexander the Great (forget the film!) all pull off the goddess look without looking fancy dress.
Modern day warrior women can stay chic by choosing jewelry inspired by ancient designs. For day, you can’t go wrong with a quirky ring – we love this design from Talgal, which replicates a Greek copper coin.
Favoured by stylish stars like Natalie Portman and Victoria Beckham, the Grecian gold headband is an easy way to make an updo look elegant. Wear Eddera’s leaf headband over a messy bun, with loose waves on the beach, or with a slick ponytail for the office.
If you want to play up a more delicate look, Liz Law’s Olympus necklace is perfect with a maxi dress, day or night.
When night falls, an antique style gold cuff necklace looks glamorous paired with a strapless top. Gemma Redux’s Eos cuff is inspired by the goddess of the dawn – making it the perfect piece to wear on a wild night out!
Feeling fierce? Eddera’s Medusa cuff takes its name from the snaked-haired Gorgon – wear at your peril!