Most people, including me, watch Gosick for the heroine Victorique. Indeed, some of my favorite things about Gosick are Victorique’s gorgeous dresses. The flared trims, the fitted cuts, and the pretty waistlines—every detail on her is outfitted with cuteness and elegance. However, for a girl with such refined clothing and lovely looks, Victorique is certainly not fashionable. In fact, she is about a decade or two behind on her fashion sense.
Set in 1924, Gosick incorporates many elements of a world emerging from World War I into its overall flavor. However, Victorique, along with most of Saubure, seems to still be stuck in the past regarding fashion. It is a bit ironic that her fictional home state largely draws on French culture.
Take for example Victorique’s favorite outfit. It is mostly late Victorian—especially past 1890s when bustles fell out of use. The general cut of the skirt is a bell shaped A-line popular in the mid 1890s. The top features some common elements of Victorian era fashion: leg o’ muttons sleeves and a chemisette with fancy tucks.
Here, we have my favorite attire of Victorique. It is a cute petite top draped over a large looped puffy bottom. In addition to the overall silhouette and wasp waist, the tightly fitted pagoda sleeves with opera length fingerless gloves again indicate heavy Victorian influences.
These are a few other shots of lovely outfits that include popular late Victorian elements: puffed sleeves, leg o’ muttons, high necklines, draped and looped cloth, flares above the knees, skirts that brush the ground, top hats, hat-like bonnets… etc. While there might be small elements here and there that deviate from the general fashion sense of the 1890s to 1900s, they are unmistakably pre-1920s, and most definitely not 1924.
Glamorous, lovely twenties. The roaring twenties that brought about radical changes. Indeed, not only fashion, but styles, art, and attitudes of this era are all far cries from those of earlier times. For example, the curves of art nouveau were replaced by the geometric art deco.
Likewise, fashion underwent major revolutions as well. In fact, 1920s is often considered the beginning of modern fashion. The strict, exacting Victorian styles fell out of favor for more comfortable and loose clothing. The S-curves, frills, and puffiness gave way to chemise, tubular dresses, and columnar lines. The women’s rights movement also inspired shorter skirts, more open clothing, and more masculine looks. The changes were so extreme and so rapid that by 1924, the new styles were widely adopted, especially by those more aware.
So where are the bob cuts, Marcel waves, cloche hats, Flappers, Jazz, and all the wonderful things of Gatsby?
Perhaps Victorique should pick up a copy of La Gazette du Bon Ton, because what she is wearing is so yesterday.
All kiddings aside, this begs us to question Gosick’s authenticity and the author’s integrity. Is this an example of lazy research? Or is Gosick changing history to cater to the mostly oblivious anime fans obsessed with gothic Lolita?
Whatever it is, Victorique is super cute!
- Post focuses almost entirely on women’s fashion.
- Gosick (gothic) has little to do with the 1920s or with Victorique’s clothes. (A distinction should be made between Victorian, Gothic, and Lolita fashion. Still, I have at times referred to Victorique as a gothic Lolita. It is just simpler sometimes.) That the title does not reference the story’s era, but instead a modern fashion popular with anime fans may suggest something.
- Victorique is not the only one out of tune with the twenties. Everyone else is a step behind as well. While not as Victorian and more Edwardian, the other outfits in the series mostly date to around the 1890s – 1910s. We see nothing of the radical change in fashion.
- Gosick is very big on its historical context. To have something so major off is abit reminiscent of Romeo + Juliet (1996), the DiCaprio version—a jarring disaster. It is hard to take the post-WWI politics and mysteries seriously when the flavors and cultures of the era is so obviously missing.
- Victorique could probably rock any style, even a falsely dressed kimono. I just want to eat her!
- Gosick Review