fashion-journalism

Like The Boys Do

Incorporating a masculine sense of strength and stature into your wardrobe may seem like a sort of femininely destructive attention seeking act. But with a few classic staples, you’ll be Woody Allen’s 70s Manhattan Mystery solving, androgynously gorgeous, Diane Keaton of a character… all before you can say pants suit. All you will need are few wardrobe staples…

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How hard is it to hire POC models?

It’s funny how we showcase our collections a year early, advertising to the world what fashion will look like in two seasons’ time. It’s particularly funny in this case, because Gucci appear to be showcasing what high fashion looked like 50 years ago (and I’m not talking about the glasses). Funnily enough, it’s not funny at all. It’s time the fashion world addressed the perpetuation of white racial ideals and allow people of colour to be represented in an industry they so heavily influence.

Above are some polaroids of the models at the Gucci Menswear SS16 show, which was presented today. It’s so easy for people to ignore the importance of visibility for POC in the media, and it’s easy to see the token POC model walk down the runway and then pretend that’s representation. Thankfully, for my point’s sake, Barbara Nicoli (one of the casting directors for this show) was stupid enough to forget to include even the token POC model.

I’m not here to tell you why representation is important, I’m here to highlight the fact that the fashion industry isn’t doing enough. Gucci is one of the biggest brands in the business, and you would have thought with the labels sales falling another 7.9% in the first quarter of 2015, they’d be trying to advertise their clothes to a wider market, but they’re only showing us white people in their clothes today; there’s a lesson here somewhere.

It seems Alessandro Michele took the 60s/70s trend way too literally. In case Gucci need reminding: It’s 2015. It’s not difficult to hire POC models.

Why There’s No Good Writing About Fashion

Anne Hollander, author of Sex and Suits (among many other things), recently passed away. She penned this really good piece for Slate back in 1997 on the dismal state of fashion writing. An excerpt:

Fashion now seems like a club with a private jargon that leaves no room for the play of sensitive literary exposition. And good critical writing about clothing hardly exists at all. There is no tradition of clothes criticism that includes serious analysis, or even of costume criticism among theater, ballet, and opera critics, who do have an august writerly heritage. This fact may be what makes the fashion journalist hate her job–the painful sense that real work cannot be done in this genre, that it would be better, more honorable, to be writing about something else.

There are heartening exceptions. One is Amy Spindler of the New York Times, who seems to take clothes seriously without excess or apology, deploying a quick imagination and an interest in detail that give her writing a fine attentive sting. (A Versace show “opened with razor-sharp bias-cut asymmetrical navy dresses, stern except for a frill at the hem and a swatch of black lace that masked eyes.”) There was Kennedy Fraser, late of The New Yorker, whose witty essays on fashion published in that magazine during the 1970s have since, happily, been collected. Holly Brubach, who succeeded Fraser at TheNew Yorker, kept the standard high during her time there. A big exception is the fashion journalism of France, where a noticeable respect for fashion has been a standard common attitude since the 17th century. Fashion is as acceptable in France as any imaginative work, and criticism about it has certainly flourished there. […]

But fashion has been without honor in the English-speaking world for so long that we are afraid to take it seriously–solemnly, yes, as we take so many things, but not with ordinary seriousness. When we are not in raptures, or disapproving in the name of female realities, we are likely to wax sociological and psychological about fashion, to weigh it down with quasiscientific meaning–out of some ancient fear, perhaps, of its obvious debt to Eros.

It’s well worth a read, and you can see the rest here

(Thanks to Ivory Tower Style for the link)

Introductions

The prospect of finishing your degree will either come as a welcome relief, or a dreaded finale. Regardless of where you fall, we will all be faced with the same question: what do I want to do next?

Fortunately I have a plan. It’s been that way since I was seventeen. Study fashion journalism. Graduate. Get a job at a women’s glossy magazine. Buy a house. Get married. Become editor (?). Have a baby. Freelance. And live happily ever after… 

But many of my fellow soon to be graduates will be undecided. Rushing into the world of work could be your biggest nightmare, and travelling could seem much more appealing. The options are endless.

After three years of keeping you safe, (or 4,5 or 6 – I applaud you doctors, architects and lawyers) your degree is coming to an end and life-changing decisions lie ahead. Not to mention a hell of a lot of packing!

This is where I step in (not with your packing sadly). With only 8 months left of uni, the overwhelming feelings that come hand-in-hand with this highly anticipated change have left me filled with panic – and reaching for a cakey-delight as a means to calm myself down. I dread to think how many graduating-related calories I have consumed!

So here I bring you my diary of thoughts, preparation and advice for the ominous and ever looming day that is graduation.

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Levis first reached the East Coast in the luggage of rich vacationers who had seen them on dude ranches. Since then, the lust for “authenticity” has proved to be a lucrative contagion. Middle-class kids spend billions to project street cred; supermodels weigh as little as famine victims; designers channel the swagger of nomadic tribesmen; convicts set the standards for body art; the guerilla uniform of aviators, camouflage, and a knitted cap is a perennial favorite for celebrities incognito. Thus do the least oppressed citizens of the world express their imagined solidarity—expensively, in one respect; cheaply, in another—with the most marginal. You invert an hourglass when the sand runs out, and the fashion world inverts the social hierarchy when the trappings of privilege lose their glamour.
—  The Global Business of Sartorial Slumming by Judith Thurman for The New Yorker 
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The Worlds Original Face. T.W.O Face 

T.W.O face is an urban street brand hailing out of London whose meticulous fixation on detail is shone through the different designs, fabrics and fit of the hat. To me their brands represent urban royalty. Here is what they are about:  

T.W.O Face ( The World’s Original Face ) was established in 2012. Urban culture serves as the major inspiration for the inception of the London born, underground brand. 

T.W.O Face is underpinned by the founder’s belief that : the clothing should embody premium quality alongside a consistently strong identity; aiming to epitomise an understated style. 

The vision is that T.W.O Face will acquire respect through it’s dependability to offer a range exuding clean cut original design; permitting the brand to compete and excel against international labels with a British product for the first time. 

T.W.O Face signals the emergence of a campaign to truly deliver a timeless street uniform; hailing out of London, England.

I understand that there is an abundance of urban wear brands out there right now such as Obey, Supreme or those on Karmaloop that are trying to reshape the way urban wear is seen but those brands only offer the world a monolithic perspective on urban wear.  So my criteria for new emerging brands is innovation, which is what I found when I first saw T.W.O Face’s 3rd edition Forest of Gold 5 panel. My mind literally went into a frenzy that almost paralyzed me. As a fashion deviant who does not abide by gender norms, I have a sweet spot for hats so their regalness really spoke to me.  As I did further research of the brand I learned that what I thought was a snapback is actually called 5 panel hats that have a rich history that can be read here. Another reason why I liked their brand was their elegant presentation on their social media platforms, exuding regal hoodness. The team behind this brand understands that presentation goes hand in hand with the prosperity of a brand: their looks also are modeled by people of a different swagger than adds another depth into international urbanwear.  So check out their regal take on 5 Panel Hats. Support Independent Brands!

Their Links….

http://www.theworldsoriginalface.com/

https://www.facebook.com/TheWorldsOriginalFace

https://twitter.com/twofacelondon

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I cannot consciously say that I am an avid shopper or fan of American Apparel or their products, but I do believe the company has started a revelation. 

American Apparel, a clothing manufacturer and retailer, is widely known for it’s provocative and often controversial advertisements. Many would describe these billboards as racy and distasteful, others view them as natural and honest. 

Nowadays, you hear “body image” and “self acceptance” thrown around everywhere. It has become apparent that America, specifically women and teenaged girls, is surrounded by the idea of obtaining the perfect body. American Apparel’s newest campaign allows one to seriously question their idea of beautiful. 

Jacky O’Shaughnessy is a 62 year old model who has posed for AA in years past. While she has modeled basics for the label, her previous work for AA was clothed, and her new campaign is, well, not. That being said, O’Shaughnessy is the newest face of AA’s lingerie line. 

The long legged beauty, sporting endless white locks even has her own tagline; “Sexy has no expiration date”. The idea behind the campaign is priceless and pressures women of all ages into loving their body. 

Even though American Apparel has created a lot of ridiculous campaigns in order to make a statement - like over sexing their models by barely clothing them - this idea is definitely one I support. 

I hate pretentious fashion writing and can’t bear fashion clichés – I’d never entertain any young writer who used the terms ‘iconic’, ‘must-have’ or ‘it-bag’. As in design, you must have your own voice, and when it’s authentic, people will listen to you. I’m always most delighted when people who don’t care about fashion like my work.
—  Sarah Mower, i-D i-Profile