Faster Fashion: The Media’s Influence

FashionFashion Inspiration

Faster Fashion: The Media’s Influence

Throughout middle school and high school, I took my fashion inspiration from the red carpets at awards shows, the OMG! tab of Yahoo’s website (now Yahoo Celebrity), and my subscriptions to Seventeen and Teen Vogue. Thirty years ago, when my mom was in high school, she read Seventeen and Glamour weekly, but obviously could not access the constant stream of information everyone with a smartphone possesses today. It seems like in the last several years, even, the ways in which we get our knowledge about fashion has changed exponentially. I pick up a physical copy of Vogue when I’m on my way to the airport, or in the summers for beach browsing, but on a daily basis, I stick to the Internet, following several blogs each week, browsing online shops, and reading online versions of my favorite magazines.

Trends of 2015

Nearly 80 years ago, fashion historian James Laver established a timeline for trends, arguing that 10 years before a trend’s time, it was seen as “indecent,” one year before, “daring,” the year of, “smart,” and 10 years after its time, “hideous.” His careful calculations were drawn after observing long-established tendencies. Today, however, “trends” become popular instantly, with something as small as a post on Instagram—and they fade just as quickly. Big-name celebrities, i.e. Taylor Swift, Blake Lively, and Rihanna, can be photographed in nearly anything, and overnight, it will be sold out online.

Trends can no longer be forecast years in advance, and brands that cannot speedily manufacture designs struggle to survive. Zara, for example, produces over 10,000 new designs each year, with designs going from production to storefronts within just two weeks.

The concept of a “trend” has shifted entirely. With the speed at which they change, it is hard to differentiate where one trend ends and the next begins. One photo goes viral on Instagram or Pinterest, and instantly a new craze is born. This year, we’ve already seen fringe and florals erupt with popularity; what will be next?

-Katherine Littel

Images courtesy of: Harper’s Bazaar.

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