By Brittney MacDonald, Life & Style Editor
It is that time now—the end of this column. Normally I would find some way of summarizing all the complex and shocking facts I’ve laid out in these articles. However, I find myself at an impasse because fashion and trends are never-ending. There is no conclusion to what we’ve examined—it will continue to cycle as it always has. If that seems unsatisfying to you, then you’re not the only one.
Many of the things I find fascinating about fashion also annoy me. The biggest peeve is that it will continue to make the same mistakes it always has. As a society we can expect to see the truly hideous revivals of some of the worst decades of trends—everything from ’80s fanny packs to ’60s vinyl and plastic fabric replacements. Currently we exist in a ’90s revival, which isn’t so bad, but imagine when we eventually cycle back to the goth’d-out direction of The Cure and Siouxsie and the Banshees.
With our current focus and conservative trends, I’m hoping for a revival of ’60s mod culture and the British Invasion. All we need is another Beatles—but I digress.
As cringeworthy as it is to see some of these trends again, that issue pales in comparison to the real crimes that exist within the fashion industry. The industry perpetuates mass production that does irrevocable damage to the environment. Many companies promote outsourcing, sometimes resulting in poor working conditions and child labour in other countries. There’s also the constant and encouraged theft of ideas from small independent design houses and designers by big label moguls.
It becomes difficult to ratify enjoyment of such an industry—but here we are, carrying on and following along.
I’m not here to judge anyone or to tell you you’re a horrible person for fawning over that Prada bag or those Dolce & Gabbana sunglasses. I love fashion and probably always will—but I do so with an awareness of where fashion comes from. Not just who makes it, but an honest and true attempted understanding of how it comes to be. Why is this popular? Why is that so cheap? These are questions you need to ask. The answer could mean the difference between ignorant support of bad practices or supporting industry leaders attempting to change things for the better.
As another bonus, paying mind to the evolution of trends is a great way to gain insight into the cultural and economic status quo. All it takes is a little critical thinking and some keen observation skills.