The Changing Face of Fashion

Welcome to my thoughts on the changing face of fashion and truths that we all need to be aware of.

 A Blessing and a Curse

Fashion. For many it is a word that uplifts and inspires. Fashion motivates thousands of people to dress themselves up with extra effort and planning, to look as good as they can. To spend and indulge so as to be acceptable in the fashion community.

For others, fashion is a depressing word. A word that brings up the idea of not-being-good-enough or not looking hot enough to be on Instagram.

Yes, the changing face of fashion can be scary. It can make shopping and fashion choices daunting. Why? Because a lot of the time fashion is like that flashy sports car that we just cannot keep up with  - It is always moving so fast.  The face of fashion is constantly changing, and trying to keep up can put you out of breath sometimes.

Whether we realise it or not, our daily decisions as to what we will wear are shaped at least to a degree by fashion. Then there is the fact that the forces of fashion largely determine what is available to buy. And this changes as so often as the decision makers change their view of what is 'the in thing'.

What do we mean when we talk about the changing face of fashion?

It is the idea that items we now take for granted were once the latest style. Public opinion of what is fashionable is repeatedly updated with trends thrown back and forth.

For many it may seem like their wardrobe is having déjà vu. With fashion's ever-revolving door, trends we thought were dead and buried in the back of our closets are back.

Here are some examples of trends we've seen again:

  • The Plaid Flannel - 90's grunge is back
  • The Perm
  • The Boot cut jean from 2004
  • 90's Overalls
  • The Choker necklace from the 90's
  • The 90's Doc Martens
  • Leather Biker Jacket
  • Big, Blown out Hair
  • Floral Skater Dress
  • Jelly Sandals- First Appearing shortly after WW II
  • Sky-High Platforms- Inspired by the Spice Girls
  • Scrunchies
  • Pink Streaks
  • The Denim Jacket
  • The Crop Top

Two things that help the changing face of fashion: Novelty and Conformity.

Two basic desires fuel the fashion industry- novelty and conformity.

Novelty- The need for newness

Nearly everyone likes to wear something new.  Many times we buy clothes, not because an older garment has worn out, but simply because we want a change.

Conformity - Fitting in

At the same time, we do not want to look out of place, so we buy clothes that conform - to some degree- to the style worn by our associates. Over the centuries the fashion industry has catered to and sometimes exploited these desires for novelty and conformity.

The Dark Side of Glamour

There are some problems that appear due to the  constantly changing face of fashion. Shoppers can become trapped in an endless cycle of replenishing their wardrobe. After all, the industry keeps churning out new styles.

The changing face of fashion, is no accident. Fashion companies make more money when clothes become obsolete quickly.

As designer Gabrielle (Coco) Chanel put it, 'fashion is made to become unfashionable'. What happens? The cycle of buying - The unwary consumer feels obligated to buy new clothes just to keep up to date.

The Snare In Advertising

Advertising also plays a massive role. Fashion companies spend millions of dollars promoting their products, sometimes making you feel that you NEED items. There is also a certain carefree life-style that those who wear the labels supposedly enjoy.

Nothing is more traumatic for teenagers that not having the 'right brand' of shoes.

Following the fashion trends sometimes boosts self-confidence and seems to make some people feel like they have an identity within their society.

Fashion can be  fun & exciting, but sometimes we have to be careful not to be dragged in and succumb to all the pressure.

There are many things we buy that should last us way more than we allow them to.  It normally links to the idea of being judged- and having to update our wardrobes way too often than we really need to.

Here are some things I think are important to keep in mind, things that the changing face of fashion has taught me.

Three things the changing face of fashion has taught me

1. Don’t be a Fashionista for the sake of friends.

In view of the transient nature of fashion, this is quite a handy tip to keep in mind. At best, the latest style of fashion will only last for while. So it is best not to make it your whole life. It is not a good idea to change the way you dress in order to conform to a particular group, or just to impress.

You should not feel like you have to always follow the trend. Good friends will neither force you nor expect you to keep changing just to keep up with the latest style.

You know you are in the wrong mix if you are being forced to re-do your entire  look to be 'fashionable'.

Don’t allow something that changes so often to control your life or you will likely lose your happiness.

You will be giving yourself a lot of unnecessary and tiresome work. True friends will love you to wear you are and not try to mold you to the Fashion World's expectations.

At the same time, you shouldn’t judge people because they don’t follow the fads

You meet someone who looks so 2013. So what? People can still look good even when they are not wearing the latest labels, contrary to popular belief / what the fashion industry tries to convince us.

2. Dressing is not rigid -There is no' right' or 'wrong' way.

The changing face of fashion has taught me this: What is considered amazing today can be shunned tomorrow, and vice versa.

Dressing is not as rigid as some fashion organizations make it out to be. Most times, there is no right or wrong.

In the end it is personal choice and you shouldn’t feel bad for doing it your way. Advertising often tries to make us feel that you absolutely cant do this, or you must do that. But that idea  is controlling and is often used to sell products.

The secret lies in learning to buy clothes that suit you, that are practical, that combine well with what you already have, and that won't quickly go out of fashion. Besides that, there really are no rules as to what is fashionable and what is not.

Sometimes you have to ask yourself: Am I a Slave to Fashion? 

Am I doing this just because it is the 'in thing' at the moment?

Will this outfit become redundant in a few weeks?

And  I allowing the Fashion Industry to dictate what I should buy?

3. Save money- dress for comfort

Trying to chase the latest fashion can be expensive. Let's be real. If you followed all the fashion trends as they come, you could likely end up broke.

You do yourself a favour when you do not allow yourself to be manipulated by the media, when you make your own fashion decisions.

If you dress in a dignified, modest way you will have more self-confidence and save a lot of money!

Thank you for reading my thoughts and tips on the changing face of fashion. Join the discussion, what fashion fads have you seen come and go, what are you tips?

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