A Kunstkammer of Current Trends

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Disclaimer (edited 22/2/2017): Although the overall style of this article may come across as abrasive, it wasn’t written to humiliate or laugh at anybody, nor to preach about how clothes should or shouldn’t look. As an admirer of art I respect fashion as an art form, too; if it wasn’t creative, we wouldn’t speak of trends or styles or anything like that at all. Nevertheless, everybody have their own taste and beliefs, be it in art, fashion or design. We are lucky to be able to wear whatever we want, as well as to express our opinion whenever we want. This is mine.

One of the reasons why the production of such trends irritates me is the environmental one; huge amount of natural or other resources is perpetually invested together with human labor in making of clothes. And then, whenever trends change (style elements, materials, designers who are “in”, etc.), they are donated and/or thrown out. 

But this article is more focused on the aesthethical and functional side of  clothing. It consists of rants of one girl who is fully aware that her taste may be hopelessly conservative.

(Thank you to SA of Dear Beautiful World for inspiring me to share the trends that make me scratch my head.)

Messing-up the shirt: Off-the-shoulder, tied-up, oversized flared cuffs

For me, the beauty of shirt lies in its tailoring. Trying to make an off-shoulder top from it seems to me aggressive with all the wrinkles and hems cutting into skin. The worst version is that with a tied-up knot at the bottom of the shirt.

Stumbled upon few sites and blogs who praised the mentioned elements as a “fun twist on the classic button-up”, recommending them to be worn in office or formal environments instead of the ordinary shirts. Well, not really. I can’t imagine wearing such shirt to work and not feeling cheap. And can somebody explain me how am I supposed to write, to type or to do something in general with these ridiculous cuffs that will get in my way every time I try to do so?

Overly oversized

Can’t stop thinking of tents when seeing things like this. Is the purpose to hide oneself? Or to emphasize his or her small figure?

Pyjamas and slip-ons

Why don’t you stay at home if you want to wear your PJs and furry slip-ons so badly? I haven’t seen anything so hideous like the Gucci slip-ons in aesthethical sense. Also, they just ask for catching so much dirt from the streets on the fur and back of your feet.

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Sweatpants with anything and anywhere

I shivered when I saw this trend creeping in our streets, reaching even the university. So many guys wearing their ugly gray sweatpants paired with a t-shirt and a jacket that was supposed to dress the whole ensemble up but guess what – it didn’t. Putting the jacket on doesn’t make you look more formal or polished if you have those baggy sweats stained with your lunch on. When I saw the guys sitting in the auditorium, I just expected them to take out a bag of popcorn to crunch on while the teacher delivers a lecture.

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This is the nearest picture I found to what I mean; imagine a dinner jacket instead of the coat. This guy actually looks fine compared to the street reality.

I noticed it’s a part of the sport-inspired trend, going-to-the-gym-and-doing-my-business-after-in-same-clothes but it doesn’t really have such an impact when the person wearing it seems to have done everything except for that gym part.

But don’t worry, our country was (hopefully is not anymore) long time typical for its inhabitants sporting hiking boots, soft-shell jackets and other gear everywhere – to work, school, restaurants, universities, theatres… Hiking and going to mountains is a favourite activity here so it somehow leaked in everybody’s wardrobe. Seeing the sweatpants around shouldn’t shock me that much actually.

Local trends:

Michael Kors everything

Michael Kors became here a mid-class synonym for exclusivity with a hint of elitist attitude, therefore quickly losing the meaning when everybody started to hunt for him. I don’t understand the hype around him; his bags are nothing special regarding both design and quality and they are of course overpriced (like Starbucks). It seems to me like he just copied some ideas of other fashion houses…? But he does invest a lot in marketing, paying some of the most influential personalities to advertise for him.

O Bag and its bizarre variations

Not sure how widespread are creations of this company but one day, suddenly a store named “O Bag” appeared on the main shopping street in my city, offering plastic bags with some options to personalize them. Those who noticed divided into two camps: the O Bag enthusiasts who praise their original design and practicality, and those who, well, don’t. Guess in which camp I am?

This is the bag version of Crocs. If you have ever dreamed of carrying around the shopping basket, then I have good news for you! I owned a plastic bag when I was a kid but never thought of it to be so in few years later. Should have keep it… or not.

Ok, to be honest, I appreciate some color on the streets so it doesn’t really bother me to see them if they are of other colors than beige, gray or black; and the basic shape is quite nice and unusual. Looking at variations like these, however, make me want to burst in laughter.

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Source: velvetstyle.it

By the way, has anybody ever understood the purpose of fur (of faux fur) lining on bags?

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8 thoughts on “A Kunstkammer of Current Trends

  1. On one hand, I recognize fashion as art and a form of expression (albeit often art that makes me scratch my head or sneer in disgust), but the trend cycle that begins upstream is pretty despicable. Even if those hideous shoes were a deliberate statement of the absurdity of fashion, the message they communicate is of consumption. Maybe my aversion to highly visible trends is because they represent the breakneck pace of capitalism. Who knows?

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    1. As an art lover, I try to view fashion as an art form, too. Not only the extravagant side; even the simplest garment made well is art. It’s possible that while kind of “progressive” (meaning I can take a lot when it comes to contemporary art) in art I’m hopelessly conservative in fashion. I am an advocate of functionality and clean design but have no problem when everybody else isn’t. When I think about this deeper, the thing that annoys me in stuff I posted here the most is not their ridiculousness or ugliness but mainly the consumer aspect in them. That they come and leave so quickly and somehow, many people believe that to own them is better than not. And that many resources are put into this stuff (like Archana mentions with baby kangaroo in those ugly slip-ons) and often not used up, rather thrown to rot on waste dumps.

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  2. I see it in a different light. I like that designers can be creative and go tangential to the classics. I need that sort of thing in any industry. I don’t necessarily dislike it when I see Victorian blouses and off shoulder shirting. Office jobs are becoming less dogmatic. I can go to work on shorts and a tshirt. And nobody would mind. We have sleeping bags next to our desks for naps. And I know creative industries have this sort of freedom in dressing too. So if someone finds it appealing, why not ?

    Some creations go viral and become trends. Some don’t. Fine.

    If you are looking for say heels with ankle straps, you are more likely to find a pair when they are trending. Or if you want block heels, you could only find them in vintage shops till MNZ made them trendy. I want oxblood to become the color of the season again because I am looking for a garment in that color. I don’t mind waiting and taking my pick when the cycle happens.

    I would like to think I wear all the things I purchase. I got those flats with lace up ties. I wear them today and can’t wait for spring/summer. I could find them because they were tending two years ago. Everlane and most companies are making loafers because the Gucci ones are trending. It was really hard to find them prior from American brands in good make.

    The only thing I dislike is the disposal or permanent storage of trendy items after the next thing comes along.

    But in my everyday life, I hardly see anyone following trends. It’s only on the blogs that I see fur slippers and what not.

    Since I blog, I see a lot of trending items. I do mock them when I see lot of people jumping on bandwagons. I also congratulate myself for resisting it at the end of the season.

    I dislike those fur loafers though. Aesthetic wise and a baby kangaroo died for that ? No thank you.

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    1. Thank you for sharing. Yes, I didn’t mean to criticise creativity itself; I’m still at an exploration phase with my English so some more abstract topics are harder to formulate. I will edit the article so it is clearer then, I hope.

      Workwear: Really depends on the specific place you’re working at. At your work or in creative industry, why not. But in my place wearing that tied shirt? Impossible. My workplace isn’t that conservative like law firms, banks, etc. but looking like that would be inappropriate, even though we work with young clients.

      I live in rather conservative country when it comes to clothing but every season there is a trend or two (however not too extravagant like that furry bag or slippers) that gets repeated almost on everyone. When sneakers a la Isabel Marant stopped being trendy, a lot of them appeared on the second hand sites and in the second hand stores themselves. The same now with suede skirts, etc.

      You have a good point with that availability of goods. It’s true that until they were in, I couldn’t find any decent chelsea boots here.

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  3. Oh I stopped tolerating “street style” and “fashion week” ages ago. There were people like Anna dello Russo that did it well and with panache and then all these other fools starting trickling in that it seems like a competition of who can wear the most ridiculous thing but to each their own. Surely they are laughing all the way to the bank. Some people like the solo lady in the “pajama look” can carry these more head-scratching looks, others just look like alcoholics.

    And the “wear to work” suggestion you’re right!, is mostly inappropriate unless one works in a creative environment.

    MK is also ubiquitous in the US too. Some stuff is quite nice esp. under the main line, but they kill the diffusion lines with the logo,overt branding and over producing them that any discount store is chocked full of it. But I can’t hate MK because I remember thousands of years ago when he put Celine on the map.

    Your sweatpants thing is hilarious. I wear sweatpants (minus the working out!) out in public now. I like to think I look quite chic. But the dirty sweatpants and the popcorn cracked me up.

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  4. Thanks for an interesting information – didn’t know MK was in Celine! I will look up now some of his creations from that era.
    Well the sweatpants were sported here mainly by the guys, at least what I’ve seen. And they wore them to lectures or to exams. They were baggy with huge brand name on. And some of them were dirty. 🙂 But Im not hating on sweatpants at all! The guy in the picture looks quite okay, Ive seen not that good examples in the streets. I actually bought a dark skirt from the same material, a kind of sweatskirt if that word exists, haha.

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  5. Oh Zia! Thank you so much for writing this post. I laughed reading your picks and couldn’t agree more. Those Gucci loafers and pjs – if people wanted to give that slept-in vibe, why don’t they just stay in bed? You are right about that fur catching all the dirt.Very impractical indeed!
    This is the first time I am reading about the O bag. I am curious to know more what it is all about. Yeah, what is the point of fur in bags? No idea at all! Michael Kors is so over done. I was so tired of seeing those big blingy MK emblems on each and everyone’s bag in the last few years. I think they are toning it down a bit now. But, I am still not sure of the quality of Michael Kors bags. Apparently, there are so many “tiers” in quality within the brand (outlet store, mid-range, for teens, high-end) etc. I am in no hurry to explore though. The brand is so over done and I cannot stand the choice of their colors! 😦

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    1. Thanks for stopping by!
      I think O Bag is an Italian brand. It suddenly appeared here and I don’t know how widespread in the world it is. I can imagine that these bags can be very practical if you also like the unusual design and material. But I’m still not sure what to think about them. They’re just stirring my emotion but I guess that’s what also art does…? 🙂
      Yeah, I also feel that the MK hype is slowing down now. I’m curious what the next “big thing” is.

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