Friday, 9 March 2012

The Ever Changing Fashion Industry

‘Fashion should express the place, the moment... Fashion, like opportunity, is something that has to be grabbed by the hair’ - Coco Chanel.

We live in a society where it is socially acceptable to express yourself through your choice of clothing. But with the ever changing ‘look of the season’ fast coming and going straight back out of fashion, is the quick paced fashion industry ever going to come to a halt? 

As far back as we can remember, fashion has played a massive part in the way in which a man or woman chooses to dress. Everyone can picture the style of clothing from previous periods when asked, and the industry continues to not falter in providing for its consumer.

Coming into the 21st century with new looks coming out what seems to be every month; it appears the fashion industry is at an all-time high. To be ‘in fashion’ has started to become more popular in modern time. As people start to experiment with new looks, so does the fashion industry.

Fashion journalist Sofia Bak says; “There's a lot of pressure on designers to create something new. Influential fashion industry professionals, like A-list press, have seen it all, so it's easy to bore them and get a bad review. The consumer naturally demands something fresh, not many people want the same thing they're wearing now, only newer.

“New designs will be created every season, or at least a designer will attempt to create something new. Some trends leave quickly because they're too obvious and date easily and no-one wants to look ‘soooo last season’. However, more classic ones will stick around until another strong trend takes over. For instance, skinny jeans have stuck around for years, not seasons.”

Fashion continues to evolve, not only with the clothes that are brought out, but the way in which people have access to them. It becomes questionable as to whether the consumer will continue to purchase new trends at the fast rate that they come out, or whether the fashion industry has become too rapid and will start to lose people’s interest in following fashion, as it changes so quickly.

Sofia said: “Of course people will continue to follow fashion trends, they always have. Fashion is the fun part of life and a form of escapism for many. Trends are a dual phenomenon. On one hand they're hated because people don't like to think of themselves as fashion victims, and we do know that they're created by the marketing industry, rather than the fashion industry, to sell a lot of product every season - simply because it's ‘in’. But, on the other hand, trends are a form of inspiration and allow for creativity within your look.”

The industry opens up a huge gap for people to be able to be flexible with what they wear. What is classed as fashionable to one person may not be to another. So although fashion is constantly changing and evolving, ‘trends’ as such only play a part as a guidance if you like. They are there to help people create a look from a base idea.”

Sofia said: “London, especially, frowns upon trends. We are trailblazers, not followers. People who follow trends are already behind, because as you know by the time the trend that we've seen on the runway makes it into stores, it's already been worn so many times, it's almost like you're copying someone. The trend is - there is no trend.

“It's much better to wear something that flatters your body-type and skin/hair colour, something you feel confident in, something that you love and makes you happy, even if it is dated. It's your confidence that makes you beautiful, not trends.”

When looking at high street fashion stores, it is especially clear that there is a fast rotation with the stock that comes in. Providing new trends for customers, as well as key, basic items, which will stay in fashion as long as they are needed - will help to keep people interested. 

With the fashion industry constantly changing and moving in full circles year by year, it is hard to keep up with what is supposedly classed as ‘in’ or not.

As the seasons have started to change over, new styles for spring/summer 2012 are already hitting the shops. Key pieces are coming into play with the influences from the industry’s biggest calendar events of the year. With New York and London Fashion Week just completed, eager fashion lovers are looking forward to what the industry has to offer for autumn/winter later this year.

Like Coco Chanel said, ‘Fashion, like opportunity, is something that has to be grabbed by the hair’ – there is no point in worrying over what everybody else is doing trend wise; fashion is the opportunity for you to express yourself, not everybody else.

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