There was a time, not that long ago, that the one-piece jumpsuit was considered by some to be risque - an option only for the young and fashion-forward. And while certain women look great in them, perhaps you've resisted the style for years.
Now is the season to try a jumpsuit. The current fervor for the garment might be that it's suitable for almost every occasion - work, play, even black tie. For once, body type doesn't matter, as sizes run from petite to plus in an array of silhouettes that can be extremely flattering.
"I see the jumpsuit as the next way women of all ages are getting dressed up ... and dressed down," says Cheryl Feld, owner of Impulse Boutiques in Port Washington and Greenport, N.Y. "We always had, like, one in the store, but it was a little bit of a tough sell. People didn't accept it as the norm. Now, it's like they come in and the first thing they ask is, 'Do you have jumpsuits?' I bring them in and they go out."
There's a popularity surge at Lane Bryant, too, where jumpsuits come in sizes 12 through 28, as well as petites.
"We've definitely seen our customers gravitating toward jumpsuits more and more," says Malissa Akay, a senior vice president at the company. A typical Lane Bryant customer is, she adds, looking for "more trend-focused statement jumpsuits that can be dressed up or dressed down depending on her mood or plans for her day."
The appeal? "They are a fantastic alternative to a dress. Jumpsuits are easy to wear, they're comfortable and they look amazing on everyone."
Feld agrees, "Jumpsuits are the perfect combination of a replacement for the dress and the ease of wearing pants. And today, there's a versatility to them and that's why they've taken a huge leap."
JUMPSUITS THROUGH THE DECADES
There may finally be mainstream acceptance of the jumpsuit, but it has taken a while. The style is almost 100 years old.
1919: The one-piecer was actually created for parachuters and skydiver jumping (yes, really) out of airplanes.