Is High Fashion on the Verge of a “Less Complicated Point of View?”

Concerning the last episode of Project Runway, Tom and Lorenzo, creators of the successful fashion blog by that name, write:

“. . .this was about Nina and Michael and in many ways that judging session was representative of an ongoing conversation in the fashion industry in light of the collapse of the economy. Namely, should the industry move away from a focus on theatrical high-priced luxury goods and fantasy clothes and should it embrace a more downscale, less complicated point of view?” (underlining and italics mine.)

http://tomandlorenzo2.blogspot.com/2010/10/project-runway-congratulations.html

This is the first I have heard of high fashion possibly moving away from complex and sometimes bizarre concept shows, and contemplating something more like the early twentieth century when high fashion designs did not include strange curiousities like felted wire headdresses and thigh-high fur boots.  When I see photos of haute couture clothing from before 1950, I respond to it immediately, often with a desire to own and wear that lovely garment.   Though I love watching today’s runway show videocasts, I can’t say that I have the same response.  Most often I find the models to be cluttered with a lot of accessories and layers.  So much so that I have a hard time evaluating the garments.  And the garments often appear to be purposefully unflattering to women, though they are made by people who claim they love women and want to dress them beautifully. 

What would be a “more downscale, less complicated point of view?’ (Though I slightly resent the assumption that clothing devoid of overweening theatricality, which I, a regular consumer might like, is considered “downscale.”)

Not a scientific measure of our economy, but over the last few years I have noticed that shopping carts at Target are a lot less full than they used to be.  Though I am told by media sources that it is technically no longer a recession, it is clear that something has shifted both economically and culturally for Americans. 

Is this change going to be played out in fashion? 

 Are you already seeing some changes?

Or do you think Nina and Michael were just filling air time and that high fashion will never change?

Home-sewers are keenly aware of the fashion world and

 I would love to hear from my readers on this topic.

If this topic sparks a thought or idea, please post a comment. 🙂

Next Post: Friday, November 12, 2010: Stash Bash Update

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Ellen
    Nov 11, 2010 @ 16:17:07

    I’m a big fan of Project Runway, and quite disappointed when my favorite didn’t win. Nina and Michael made what I thought were some odd comments about the trend of fashion heading toward the kinds of things that Gretchen made.

    However, the thought that less complicated would be considered “downscale” is a confusing one to me. I expect now that the fashion runway shows are just that… shows… and what becomes RTW from these (or even couture) may only slightly resemble the garments on the runway. But less complicated can still be beautiful, flattering, and yes, even “upscale”.

    I’m happy to see that fashion designers are actually reaching out to the masses as well, as evidenced by the designers that work with Kohls and Target. I loved the Liberty of London tie-in this past spring at Target.

    Not sure where I’m going with this but just wanted to say that I still want beautiful, flattering clothes, even if I want to spend less.

    Reply

    • Sewista Fashionista
      Nov 11, 2010 @ 16:30:47

      Ellen,
      Great comment. I agree with you that RTW garments often look much more upscale than a lot of what I see on the runways.

      Reply

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