It has been remarked upon that Hellenics don’t particularly have preferred fashion in clothing, which I found to be a bit of a strange remark since most polytheistic groups don’t seem to express a particular orientation in fashion with the exception of some costuming in reinactment (era-appropriate) clothes for particular events. Otherwise our tastes tend to be as individual as you would find among any religious group. Even those groups which have religious doctrines which determine how you dress, I have never seen any evidence of religious dress fashions.
There of course was a response to this in which modern dresses that were inspired by Hellenic design could be taken up as fashion if we consider the aesthetics behind the ancient preference of using simple drapes of rectangular cut fabric. This of course was very interesting for me personally because I do aesthetically prefer dresses of rectangular cut, specifically enjoying traditionally arabic styles in their caftans. I have several dresses in my closet of this style and very much enjoy the simple elegant drape of the fabric which is flattering on any body type in my experience. But not only is it flattering but it is comfortable!
Such dresses can be altered in material that are climate appropriate, where the fabric can be cut from thicker fabrics and layered for a colder climate or made of thinner breathable fabric for warmer places (much of which is employed in traditional caftans since they are coming from a desert environment). They are also practical being non constrictive in one’s movement, but can also be belted up for practical purposes when you need to clean or move even more unhindered without being any less attractive. Now I also layer loose pants or leggings under my caftans for extra comfort (and in the winter for additional warmth too) though in the summer I will go without when the heat is high. Therefore a simple rectangular (breathable) fashion is not only flattering and graceful, but it also serves greater practical purposes. And though I would be less comfortable wearing a traditional unsewn belted chiton, its more modern cousins and sewn adaptions can be a practical addition to one’s wardrobe that is not out of place.
To be honest I wear caftans all of the time with the exception of when I have to go to my day job. I even go shopping in them and have always been complimented on them. I even have a special one which I wear specifically for festivals because it is so pretty. Despite its Arabic decoration, there is little to persuade me to not wear it. I have sewn imitations of chitons before and when it comes right down to it, the style and feel of the caftan is very very much like that of the chiton, with its main differences in the decorative elements and patterns. Now if I ever get around to getting my own loom I would love to make my own fabrics for dresses. In any case the designs on the caftans are lovely and don’t speak of religiosity but of beauty of form (being largely geometric and swirling patterns). If I can get to weaving though I would love to develope beautiful fabrics with Hellenic themes. Someday anyway 🙂