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The importance of fashion shopping

The importance of fashion. I’m not sure if many of us ask the question of the importance of fashion or if many of us have an answer to respond with. Do you dress to feel better about yourself, or is it about your status? What does it mean to you to wear designer clothes. Designer clothing is expansive, and can be time consuming, staying on top of all the trends of the day. In the United States, its very typical to hear an American say, “time is money” and that’s why if you ever visit New York, everyone is very motivated to get to their next destination.
Fast Fashion, brands as Zara, H&M, or Forever 21 seem to represent pieces that are very similar to some of your favorite designers. And these stores provide the latest trends almost 6 months sooner than many of your favorite designer. Zara, for example, is a company which is almost impossible to hear about in the United States even if you only took a single business course. Zara, has the best chain line management in the world. Within two weeks they can meet with designers and have the product on the shelve. Most companies take at least 6 months. So why pay more?
Recently, I was discussing fashion with my flatmate in Beijing, we were with a group of students from all over the world, who were shopping like madmen. They were going to places like the Silk Market or the Pear Market and bartering like their life depended on it. Kanya, just dropped Yeezy season three before fashion week in New York and has been trending in street fashion all over the globe. Many of our class-mates where buying boxes of fake Yeezys and thinking they were kings. I asked, Jack, my flatmate, why he was not participating in the festivities, and what he said was truly profound. “Thomas, if I were to buy fake Yeezy’s it would discredit my wardrobe”. Everything that he had invested into over his short 20 something lifetime would lack value because he sacrificed quality for the perception of something that wasn’t real. It’s not that he was afraid someone would find out that he had purchased an artificial item as much as the fact, for him, personally he was a man a principle. And his closest was consist to the man he was. This was the role of fashion for jack, a reflection of his values. He didn’t want to wear his Rolex watch with a pair of fake Yeezy’s because that didn’t reflect who he was. For me, I can feel quality, and I think you see it, even in the way someone carries oneself. I try to curate a wardrobe which reflects my values in life, represented by a
thoughtful sense of beauty. For me, fashion doesn’t stop there, I don’t support fast fashion brands for more than just quality. It’s ethical problem for me. As in, when you are paying such low prices, someone is not getting their share, and the practices are guaranteed to be sub-par. The fashion industry is the second worst cause of killing our plant, and I believe in investing into people who want to change that. And that is the importance of fashion for me.

Thomas Jordon Raybell

Challenges for Fashion

On Thursday, Britain made a move that made history, to leave the European Union, this will be a topic for years to come as the world watches to see how this event will unfold. The situation was difficult as those who wanted to remain in the E.U. would be challenged with the fear of “economic catastrophe” including depreciated pound and higher taxes. While on the other side, there is the fear of crime and terrorism that was seen to be linked in the increasing immigration to Britain. It’s important not to fear the unknown as Jonathan Anderson of Loewe and J.W Anderson said the next day, “Fear is just a virus”. However, there are still challenges from this departure from the E.U.

One of these challenges would for Burberry, a British luxury brand, who buys fabrics and produces clothing in Europe. A weaker pound has a likelihood to send manufacturing prices soaring, the results are going to be passed on to the consumer or the brand will have to absorb all those extra costs. The Wall Street Journal stated, that this might create an opportunity for French and Italian fashion brands to increase their market share which is already half of luxury goods in the world. Another challenge with the outcome for Brexit is increased volatility in a market that is already volatile, will hurt British citizen’s ability to purchase luxury goods. As Mario Ortelli, senior research analyst at Sandford Bernstein, told Business of Fashion. “This is not good for luxury goods companies and if we look at the trading of the shares of the luxury good companies, probably this Brexit decision will increase the pressure of the market going down”. Or even the world’s ability to buy luxury goods as the import and export to and from Britain are left unknown. Currently, shoppers have the ability to get some good deals from sites like Net-a-Porter as products can be picked up for a cheaper price due to the flex in exchanges rates. London-based designer Christopher Kane told New York Times, “The Fashion industry is not going to know what hit it. It’s quite scary”.

Thomas Jordon Raybell

Street fashion

Some say streetwear is a dirty word, others say it’s merely a subculture in fashion and finally, others say those titles are demeaning to designers all over the world. Either way streetwear has been trending for the last 30 years, so it might not be a trend as much as a lifestyle by now. Brands like Off-White or Fear of God have made streetwear more sophisticated in the recent seasons. However, the problem lives on when it comes to lists. Lists of the greatest streetwear brands, lists like Complex’s list of the 50 greatest streetwear brands, “Most of them are known for little more than printing graphic tees” Says Aleks Eror writer at High Sobriety. It’s hard to invest into a piece and have it be labeled as something equal to a graphic tee. Or to be a designer and have the world see your work as simple as that- it becomes a sensitive issue. Bobby Hundreds, cofounder of archetypal old skool streetwear brand stated, “Every line on this list with a few exceptions, has built their brand off T-shirts”. Streetwear is more than that.

Yoji Yamamoto, an influential Japanese fashion designer, who is a master tailor alongside those such as Medeleine Vionnect, who has won dozens of awards as Master of Design by Fashion Group International understands the importance of streetwear. Since 1981, Yoji Yamamoto has been a part of high fashion, recently collaborated with Adidas in Y-3. Yamamoto is only one of dozens of fashion designers in Pairs participating in collaborations in streetwear as Raf Simons and Rick Owens both have worked with Adidas as well.

In 2014, GQ labored John Elliott+Co as the best designer of the year. John Elliott designers range from hoodies, thermals, and raglan pullovers richly fabricated in gauzy French terry, flannel, or leather patchwork. His latest collection described in Vogue as, “the fabrics were complex and textured- one in particular, a wool bonded aluminum made into flight jackets and shorts, enabled the wearer to bend and sculpt them if he so chooses. Only exhaustive research could result in something like that”. In the same issue of GQ, the other designer of 2014 was a suit-and-tie specialists Brooklyn tailors, lines are blurring as other magazines as J.Crew and Aime Leon Dore both have a strong cross over between the two worlds.

Designer, Gosha Rubchinskiy are walking his models down Pairs fashion Week in FILA’s paneled sweaters and Tennis Classic sneakers that were given a post-Soviet makeover topped with oversized rave-ready sunglasses. Streetwear, working class fashion, sneakers, call it what you may, but I would say streetwear is a part of the fashion world or maybe, it’s always been there.

Thomas Jordon Raybell