For many women the spirt of masculine dressing is epitomised by the wearing of a man’s shirt; it symbolizes independence, sexual freedom and gender equality.Since we launched Nui Ami we have been inundated with requests to create a Nui Ami sleepshirt. In terms of nightwear, we think the sleepshirt is chic, classic and supremely comfortable, with a more subtle cool girl sexy appeal. And we were intrigued to discover where women's universal love for the sleepshirt comes from.Maybe it started in 1950’s and in particular Hollywood. Immortalised in the movies, the wearing of his shirt “the next morning” became a trope for an intimate night before. “It is no surprise that when any woman sleeps with any man in any film, the likelihood that she wears his shirt in the next scene is so high, it’s almost expected” wrote Andrea Cheng for CFfashionbook in her exploration of the subject.When Jane Fonda and Robert Redford sleep together as newlyweds in the 1967 comedy Barefoot in the Park, she wears an oversized men’s pyjama shirt the morning after.Style icon Audrey Hepburn as style icon Holly Golightly preparing for another rendezvous in the 1961 movie classic Breakfast at Tiffany’s.Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie in Mr and Mrs Smith 2005, she wears her post-coital button down.
During the sexual liberation movement of the sixties and seventies…the wearing of your man’s shirt or the post sex shirt "gives the impression of independence because she came (without) a nightdress or a nightgown and she doesn’t have her stuff there,” and she is comfortable with that, Moya Luckett, media historian and Professor at New York University.And before long, the ad men started to take note...although not always depicted from a feminist viewpoint. In the 1980s, shirt brand Van Heusen capitalized on the trope and launched a campaign to sell dress shirts with the tag line: "For a man to wear. And a woman to borrow." In the commercial, a series of women go about performing mundane activities, like brushing hair, drinking coffee, or eating an apple—all in men’s shirts. “If you think I look good in this Van Heusen, you should see Jeffrey—after all it’s his shirt." It’s an overtly sexual ad and certainly of its time, these women are, nevertheless, seen under the male gaze. They are objects of desire and aspirational to both men and women.When designing our women’s nightshirts we wanted to recreate the feeling of putting on a man’s shirt but with a sophisticated Nui Ami spin. We chose a classic Nehru collar and sleeves that are elegantly finished with curved cuff details and iridescent shell buttons. As with all our collections our new sleepshirts are hand-stitched in Europe in finest breathable fabrics; super soft cottons and luxurious silks that feel good against the skin and do not cling to the body.Kyoto Silk Sleepshirt £185 XS-XLBordeaux Cotton Sleepshirt £95 XS-XLWe think sleepshirts are the perfect weekend transition piece, taking you from bed to breakfast and stylish enough to be worn as a beachside coverup. We wear ours with our bestselling Nui Ami sleep bralette crated in Wales in a luxuriously soft carame French leaversl lace; this bralette is available in up to 10 cup-sizes 30-40 A-F and delivers some gentle support and a flattering silhouette. The versatility of the sleepshirt makes it ones of the hardest working garments in your wardrobe and that is why it is everyone's bedtime favourite.
For A/W19 we have three new cotton sleepshirts launching: Roses White, Roses Pink and the Delphi stripe. Hand-stitched in Portugal in sizes XS-L and available online from September at www.nuiami.com