What is Fashion?fashionFashion is something we deal with everyday. Even people who say they dont care what they wear choose clothes every morning that say a lot about them and how they feel that day.
A little of what you call frippery is very necessary towards looking like the rest of the world.
It depends on my day, mood and whats clean. If I have an important meeting or presentation, I put more thought into what I will wear. But on my most days, I dress to my mood which can range from funky to retro to classical. Then again, there are days when my laundry basket dictates what I ultimately wear.
In the perspective of costume history, it is plain that the dress of any given period is exactly suited to the actual climate of the time. according to James Laver, a noted English costume historian. How did bellbottom jeans fade into the designer jeans and boots look of the s into the baggy look of the s? Nobody really knows.
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One certain thing in the fashion world is change. We are constantly being bombarded with new fashion ideas from music, videos, books, and television. Movies also have a big impact on what people wear. RayBan sold more sunglasses after the movie Men In Black. Sometimes a trend is worldwide. Back in the s, teenagers everywhere dressed like Elvis Presley.
Fashion is revealing. Clothes reveal what groups people are in. In high school, groups have names goths, skaters, preps, herbs. Styles show who you are, but they also create stereos and distance between groups. For instance, a businessman might look at a boy with green hair and multiple piercings as a freak and outsider. But to another person, the boy is a strict conformist. He dresses a certain way to deliver the message of rebellion and separation, but within that group, the look is uniform. Acceptance or rejection of a is a reaction to the society we live in.
Fashion is a language which tells a story about the person who wears it. Clothes create a wordless means of communication that we all understand, according to Katherine Hamnett, a top British fashion designer. Hamnett became popular when her tshirts with large messages like Choose Life were worn by several rock bands.
Musicians and other cultural icons have always influenced what were wearing, but so have political figures and royalty. Newss and magazines report on what Hillary Clinton wears. The recent death of Diana, the Princess of Wales, was a severe blow to the high fashion world, where her clothes were daily news.
Protection from cold, rain and snow mountain climbers wear hightech outerwear to avoid frostbite and overexposure.
Bayard Rustin, seen here in surrounded by young people before a demonstration, was a
Clothing can be used as a political weapon. In nineteenth century England, laws prohibited people from wearing clothes produced in France. During twentieth century communist revolutions, uniforms were used to abolish class and race distinctions.
How do you know what will be hot in the future?
Emotions we dress up when were happy and down when were upset.
Physical attraction many s are worn to inspire chemistry.
Abigail Adams, letter to John Adams, May ,
Fashion is a means of selfexpression that allows people to try on many roles in life. Whether you prefer hiphop or Chanelchic, fashion accommodates the chameleon in all of us. Its a way of celebrating the ersity and variety of the world in which we live. Fashion is about change which is necessary to keep life interesting. Its also a mirror of sorts on society. Its a way of measuring a mood that can be useful in many aspects, culturally, socially even psychologically. At the same time, fashion shouldnt be taken too seriously or you lose the fun of it.
Popular fashions are close to impossible to trace. No one can tell how the short skirts and boots worn by teenagers in England in made it to the runways of Paris, or how blue jeans became so popular in the U.S., or how hiphop made it from the streets of the Bronx to the Haute Couture fashion shows of London and Milan.
How do you choose what to wear in the morning?
The Museum of Costumetraces fashion from the th to the th centuries.
The apparel oft proclaims the man.
Religious expression Orthodox Jewish men wear long black suits and Islamic women cover every part of their body except their eyes.
Even folks in the s pored over fashion magazines to see the latest s. Women and dressmakers outside the French court relied on sketches to see what was going on. The famous French King Louis XIV said that fashion is a mirror. Louis himself was renowned for his , which tended towards extravagant laces and velvets.
High fashion is the of a small group of men and women with a certain taste and authority in the fashion world. People of wealth and position, buyers for major department stores, editors and writers for fashion magazines are all part of Haute Couture High Fashion in French. Some of these expensive and often artistic fashions may triumph and become the fashion for the larger majority. Most stay on the runway.
Fashion is a state of mind. A spirit, an extension of ones self. Fashion talks, it can be an understated whisper, a highenergy scream or an all knowing wink and a smile. Most of all fashion is about being comforle with yourself, translating selfesteem into a personal .
Identification and tradition judges wear robes, people in the military wear uniforms, brides wear long white dresses.
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Its easy to see whats popular by watching sitcoms on television the bare midriffs and athletic clothes of , the baggy pants of The Fresh Prince of BelAir. But the direction of fashion relies on pluggedin iniduals to react to events, and trends in music, art and books.
Fashion is big business. More people are involved in the buying, selling and production of clothing than any other business in the world. Everyday, millions of workers design, sew, glue, dye, and transport clothing to stores. Ads on buses, billboards and magazines give us ideas about what to wear, consciously, or subconsciously.
Cynthia Durcanin works for Elle Magazine
International Fashion Editor Cynthia Durcanin answers the question, What is fashion?
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The collections in Paris, New York and Milan, and now London, typically set the stage for the industry one year in advance. Though, I think the street is the real barometer of . More and more designers are drawing their inspiration from life on the street. So once again, there is a link to personal and fashion. A teenager can throw something together without thinking about it and it can trigger a new trend.