Fashion A-Z

From applique to zippers, a comprehensive dictionary with definitions and
meanings of key fashion vocabulary, written by Camilla Morton.


Bolero here does not refer to the slow-tempo Latin music, but rather a shrug or short jacket. Typically open-fronted, it is collarless with long sleeves and characteristically stops above the waist. It originates, like the music, from Spain. Before the 19th century, it was more commonly referred to as a Zouave. Although these two jackets share all the same features, a Zouave had a military influence, while the bolero had been inspired by dance and sometime even a toreador, Ole!

Box Jacket

Box Jacket (or a box coat) has a straight, unfitted back that means it hangs loosely from the shoulders. It has evolved from the coachman’s heavy overcoat, but became a status symbol during the power dressing 1980s. Since then, the jacket become a wardrobe style staple and has been adopted by several high profile female politicians and leaders — think Chanel tweed coming to the White House.