Confession: I Love Sample Sales But Hate The Fashion Industry
Fashion in its purest form? Love it. Assembling an outfit is an art form. It’s my creative expression of choice. But the industry that surrounds fashion—that packages it, labels it, sells it—is a sick one. Even more so than other creative mediums, the fashion industry is particularly poisoned with intrinsic hypocrisy.
Shocked I’m not here to give you shopping advice today? Hey, sometime I surprise myself. I’m feeling particularly fiery today, so I want to step up on my soap (shoe?) box and state that retail is honest but the fashion industry is not.
The fashion industry doesn’t care about models or influencers or even consumers. Its political views are not spontaneous dialogues but rather carefully curated campaigns that match the societal trends of the moment and are carefully choreographed to lead to money in their coffers.
There are some recent events that led me to this observation… and to binge-watching two seasons of The Good Place. By the way, I really hope with this article I am moving the needle towards guaranteeing me a spot in The Good Place.
Transgender models are the talk of the industry, with some publishers going as far as to say: “The Future of Fashion is Transgender Models.” I am grateful and thrilled for these courageous men and women who fought hard to be where they are. I can’t imagine how much harder life must be for them. On the other hand the fashion industry bigwigs seem so abruptly “woke” that it makes one wonder how selfless their motivation actually is. An industry insider admitted after all “And not to be cynical, being inclusive and being diverse is actually in fashion right now… ” Mm-hm. That’s what I was afraid of.
Terry Richardson is finally cast off by Condé Nast. Now, everybody in fashion knew that “Uncle Terry” was a pervert, the same way everybody in Hollywood knew that Harvey Weinstein was one. Not only have there been countless allegations about Terry but the man himself is pretty open about who he is.
Just open his book, Terryworld, and feast your eyes upon full-frontal nudity and (both simulated and actual) sexual acts. The timing of the Condé Nast awaken moment makes me doubtful again of the real motivation behind the industry move. They’ve always known the truth, so why do something about it now? Because it is trendy to do something about it now.
Computer-generated fashion influencers… exist. The latest darling of the fashion industry, Miquela Sousa, or @lilmiquela on Instagram, does what any influencer does: shares her outfit-of-the-day, goes to events with friends, touts her political opinions, and counts her followers—pretty successfully, I might add. She’s amassed over 545,000 followers in a short period of time. Miquela is a 19 year old model and musician, probably well off since her outfits are of the Chanel, Proenza Schouler caliber. And while those labels are real, she herself… is not, at least according to the Business of Fashion. Does it matter? It does to me. Wasn’t it bad enough labels were bribing influencers to wear their frocks and take pictures so we all feel we have to have what the cool kids have? Now they create imaginary cool kids that we have to copy too. They’re not just too cool for school… they’re now too cool for this plane of existence. Um, not cool if you ask me.
What is cool? Well sample sales are good, honest opportunities to bring some guilt-free joy into your life. Here are some you don’t want to miss this week:
Long live fashion. But the industry? Meh...