I read an interesting piece on BoF the other evening and it really piqued my interest. Well, firstly I was shellshocked that all that James Laver reading we did at University meant this was an article I had a genuine and grounded interest in and understanding of. It discussed what has become of fashion trends as we once knew them. A seasonal thing - at one point annual - but the sudden spike in social media fritterings and the instantaneous nature of an industry that is irrevocably influential sparks a question: do traditional fashion trends exist anymore?
Having seen the social media and blogging world completely explode over the past few years, I just had to share my two cents. The fashion industry was once infamously private, reserved for the media elite and, I would go as far as saying, something that plenty of people coveted to be part of. There's nothing like closed doors to pique one's interest, it's human nature. Whether you live and breathe fashion or you 'just wear clothes', a secondary thought instantly leads you to realise that this industry? It's mindblowingly huge and powerful.
So you buy a cheap T-shirt from Primark? Its effects could be this. (Controversial so I'll save that for another day.) Or you're a High Street Honey and can't resist a Friday lunchtime splurge in Topshop. You're only human. Or you savour every piece as it's presented on the runway, admiring the creativity and ingeniue of, more often than not, a single designer at the helm of a revered brand. Iconic fashion houses that have withstood the test of time, become championed internationally and who are unmistakeable household names whether for good or bad. (PS. Can we talk about the rebrand of Maison Margiela plz?!)
What's interesting to me is seeing the social media involvement in the industry. In 2010 I excitedly skipped a lecture - ssh - skipped over to London and handed my Press Pass Authentication Slip to the British Fashion Council and got to experience my first ever LFW (SS11) as a budding fashion journalist: but as a blogger. Daisybutter, somehow, got me there. This was the beginnings of letting bloggers in, back when being a blogger meant that you were off the scale (in a bad way) of the fashion food chain. Fast forward 8/9 seasons and bloggers are professionals. Some of us are full-time writers for our own platforms, fully fledged businesswomen and men, and traditional press are giving up the day job to try their hand at it.
For me, as someone who once wanted to be a traditional fashion journalist, social media and my blog made me fall back in love with an industry that seemed to only push people out. It was, no is, fast-paced and all-consuming, you have to keep up or get out, go hard or go home. But at the same time, it's freeing. You can select as little or as much as you want to keep up with. Perhaps you only follow one super-Instagrammer who influences you to buy one item every so often, or you read over 400 blogs like me and your wishlist is longer than you are tall. The instantaneous nature and inherent relatability of social media - in that you could and can do it too - means that we learn from each other, singular pieces as opposed to entire looks and 'trend stories' from collections are trending and I think it's pretty exciting to that picked up elsewhere.
How many times have you seen a print magazine run a 'Get The Blogger Look' story? Or seen non-blogger gals shimmy Litas (remember those days?), ombre hair, disco pants and all the other fads into their looks? It's like when we used to match outfits with our best friends aged 14 but hugely blown up. The phenomena of things trending is quite literally leading to new trends and I like that. For the first time, bloggers and *cough cough* social media enthusiasts are influencing up to designers, across to our readers and all over the shop. Trends are a funny thing though, and there’s nothing less trendy in Blogland than a trend, amirite?
What are your thoughts on the concept of trends pretty much dissolving? Lemme know – I’d love to share your thoughts in a follow-up piece.