Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Whatever happened to fashion ?

Thoughts range from the assassination of fashion to the walking dead of fashion. We have those who only know how to copy each other, stay on trend and offer variations on someone else’s themes or we have those who think that anything that can be sewn and put on a runway is fashion. We have fashion that bears the names of some of the greatest designers of the 20th century and sadly their reincarnations have not a hint of the great artist who created them nor what made them great.

We have designers who think that the pedestrian is the end all do all and we have designers who can’t conjure enough wet dreams to try to stand out from the pack… in essence we have polar opposites, neither of which is acceptable. Clothes for the sake of clothes with absolutely no thought process involved when it comes to their eventual destination which is in most cases is the markdown rack.

I have termed “design whisperers “who seemingly amount to yes men who just don’t know squat about fashion and have these ill-conceived notions that it is all about hype and nothing at all to do with the actual business of fashion. We have a dilution of a designer’s responsibilities while we have this job saving all-inclusive title of creative director which tests the limits of a designer. Designers should be designing with the aim of selling clothes and marketing people should be supervising advertising, store designers should be doing just that while designers should be casting their own shows not casting directors and most of all we have stylists who seem to think it is their show and their vision on display. Without question these brands are cases of “too many cooks spoil the stew” since it’s rather farfetched that so many ancillary people are literally of like mind when in fact I believe each one wants to put their imprimatur on each collection…. Not to mention the lack of fashion knowledge that is rampant.

Before fashion became this source of entertainment via the internet highway, shows were reserved for those who had a direct link to the world of fashion/designer meaning buyers, magazine staff (editors, reviewers etc.), stores, loyal clientele and prospective clients at every level. The audience dressed for the occasion and remained decorous and a supporting and supportive cast to what appeared on the catwalk. Now when attending these so called fashion shows we are faced with groupies, bloggers, "influencers" who have no clue about fashion history, iPhones, reviewers who attend pre show press briefings and do nothing more than regurgitate press releases which have no relevance to the clothes that are shown, this brings me to the subject that if clothes have to be explained and justified in excruciating detail, then, well, for the most part they are worthless and usually just plain ugly. As I have said a million times clothes hang on a rack, no romance cards, no justifications for their design… just inanimate pieces of cloth on a rail with a brand name emblazoned above them.

The days of “signatures”...other than heinously ugly have pretty much disappeared the same way that perpetuating the DNA of a heritage brand has disappeared; the DNA aspect has been pushed aside in the quest for theoretically new and modern which usually translates to clothes that are over worked, over designed, try too hard to be trendy and whose audience is 20 something and can least afford what is presented.

Whatever happened to the business of fashion? Today, these brands are far more interested in selling a tube of lipstick, a vial of nail enamel, a scent or any accessory. The clothes have become nothing more than a bad and sad punchline in quest of hype and reviews written by those who have the least knowledge and background and are far more worried about advertising dollars or swag than they are about fashion.

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