Fashion, the Dirtiest Word in Fashion
Fashion really is the dirtiest word in fashion
It has been used in every up-down echelon, left-right-diagonal-front-and-back of the field. What Jean Paul Gaultier does for Hermes is fashion, what Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernendez do for Proenza Schouler (and then Target) is fashion, what the Olsen twins do for The Row (and prior to that, Walmart) is fashion, what Beyonce Knowles do (or doesn’t do) for House of Dereon and Giorgio Armani’s Diamonds perfume is fashion, what Usher do for his cologne is fashion, what the African-American guy down Broadway & 6 Av’ in NYC hawks for 75% off a Cerrutti suit is fashion, what Jane Magazine and Flirt cosmetics do on The Fashionista Diaries are fashion, what Tim Gunn of Project Runway does is fashion, what American Fallen Idol Jennifer Hudson does for Avon’s Imari Seduction is fashion, what Naomi Campbell does for Dunkin Donuts’ ice tea is fashion … …
Okay, maybe not the last one.
So should fashion mark a return to its original form, its one true essence? Or should fashion’s evolution – and its infiltration to the masses – be treated as natural and even encouraged?
The latter for sure.
Fashion is no one man’s (or woman’s) chattel.
For a lesson in fashion democ-anarchy, take a look at one of fashion’s oldest and most seminal histories. Until the 6th Century AD, silk-cultivating techniques were kept as top a secret as Jim Morrison’s cause of death. Information for human betterment – and in the case of fashion, the accessibility of clothes and the knowledge to achieve the look of your choice – was never meant to be contained. A Christian monk, under the pretext of evangelism, smuggled silk-worm caterpillar eggs out of China. And what happens next, is that we don’t have to wear cotton or spandex to the Costume Institute Ball, though Rudi Gernrich and Norma Kamali would be jumping for joy at that.
The issue is more a matter of nomenclature.
Rather than cluster everything on the same comb and call them a bunch of bananas (i.e. for those not used to my spiel, “to call everything that is threaded fashion”), rendering all within fashion’s ranks cheap and nondescript, I prefer another term.
I call it Clothe-dom.