Another interesting article from the newspaper that lands at my front door: Vintage Vestments: The Philosophical Threads Woven into Papal Garments. Here's an excerpt:
You thought the cover of Vogue was influential. Many of the vestments Benedict has been wearing are in the Roman style, experts said, as opposed to the Gothic style that became more popular after the Second Vatican Council. However, Pecklers has written, sometimes Benedict picks items that combine Gothic and Roman, like the chasuble he wore on Ash Wednesday -- longer in the front than the so-called "fiddle-back" chasuble of the Roman period (named for its violin-like appearance) and wider at the bottom.
"On his mind very clearly is concern about growth of secularism in the developed world, loss of faith, loss of religious conviction," Pecklers said. "So there is clearly a sense of his returning to basic foundations, helping his flock return to what is foundational."