Monday, March 23, 2009

Prom time!

Ok I have to cover this topic...PROM! its prom season for those high school seniors. Its an exciting time of year for them where the anticipation of new chapter kicks in and the nostalgia of the previous high school years is in the air. And for one night, they get to have their last HOORAH! before the depart high school and enter a new phase of life.
This one night is filled with various dynamics that almost everyone since freshman year has been thinking about. Some include, prospective dates, getting some, after parties, and of course the dresses for he girls and tuxes for the boys. I remember at my prom, the boys definitely sported some unique choices that were definitely eye catching. Its kind of nice to know that people are letting loose and allowing all of their inhibitions out the door.
I still think that girls are definitely far more cognizant and attentive to their clothing options. After all, prom is a bit of a "red carpet" event for some high schools. I mean at mine it definitely was. Everyone looks and judges. Ok so you might not have Joan and Melissa Rivers critiquing your clothing options, but teachers and fellow students alike, are all weighing in with their opinions.
When i was shopping this passed week, I noticed all the tweens and teen magz were splattered with prom specials on their front pages. I even saw girls getting their hair and make up done as a trial before their proms (intense i know). Actually now that I think more about my prom days, I recall a dress that this girl made out of ducked tape. Yup, I said it. You want unique and different, there you've got it. But, honestly whatever floats their boat. But back to the prom specials, I saw a lot of the typical bright poofy ball gowns and also elegant pieces as well. I think that the recent black tie fashion that was presented on the red carpet from all of the award shows, definitely inspired many of the prom dresses. I also saw many elegant, slimming, straight dresses that were very figure fitting. Also, the shorter look is also becoming more popular. Instead of ballgowns, prom dresses are being cut shorter and shorter, which is more of the west coast look than the east coast. Also, prom styles are not universal, but it rather depends on the area that people live in. As I had mentioned before, in California, prom styles are a bit less black tie and more formal/casual (short summer looking dresses). But still guests look very festive and ready to party. And as for males, the tuxes are still great. There isn't much to add about them. The only thing I would recommend it to try and match with their dates. They make the couple look collectively put together. Not tacky, but cute.

Here are some links to prom styles for the ladies and the fellas!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Shoes, bags, bracelets.. O MY!

I know how I always talk about clothes. After all this is an analytical fashion blog. But, fashion does not only encompass articles of clothing. It is the entire package that makes up the exterior look on a person, the clothes, hair, make-up (for females...ok sometimes males too), shoes, and accessories. I have never mentioned anything about jewelry, bags, shoes, hair styles, etc. and I think its about time that I review some of the accessorizing trends that will be popular this spring.

I was in the store the other day (Nordstrom to be exact) and I noticed a lot of HUGE bags. I have no idea why bags went from being miniscule to being gianormous but it seems as though this has become the fashion norm among most fashion trend setters but. I personally like medium sized bags, so that I can actually find my phone when it rings or my wallet when I am about to pay. Otherwise, you kind of look like a tool when you are looking for your wallet and there is a whole line of angry people waiting to pay. are so lucky you don't need to carry bags with you. It is actually ridiculous if you think about it. Some women are bag CRAZY, they have to have a different kind of bag to match their shoes and their finished pedicures. I am becoming a little bit more obsessive about bags myself ( I can't help it they are SO cute...and pricey might I add). But back to the males for a second...remember when fanny packs used to be your dad DEFINITELY used to have one back in the day, I know mine did. And I have nothing further to say about that.

Another thing hot this spring...are big bulky colorful jewelry for the ladies. Green, blue, red, even pink gems are a hit! they are fun, flirty and fashion fun. Just be careful...don't pick out the ones that look trashy on ya, that won't be good. Shoes are important. Gladiator sandles are coming back in all sorts of trends and styles that go SO nicely with a long flowy dress. Also, strappy sexy heels are just the right touch for a girls night out! Make-up is also another thing that is incredibly important for this spring and summer season. DO NOT FAKE AND BAKE!!!! I know everyone is coming back from spring break all tan (or burnt-that sucks!), but keep a nice healthy glow, don't work on the same tan from spring break you don't want to look tanorexic, please. Apply some jergens natural body glow and walla! you are good to go until the summer. By the time the summer comes, you can jump back into natural tanning action by catching some sun rays (by of course wearing protection-sun is very damaging for your skin). But overall, the most attractive look this spring and summer seasons will be a healthy, youthfully fresh look that will make you want to be young forever.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

cheap and chic? or just cheap?

Upon skimming through the celebrity fashion news I came across the following headlines: “Mariah Carey in a $36 American Apparel dress” and “Frieda Pinto walking out of H&M.” Ok, so what? For those who do not know, H&M is a low priced clothing store with very cheap but stylish clothing and American Apparel follows the same description. So as I had mentioned before, so what? Who cares that these multi-million dollar celebrities who are earning big bucks, shopping at such low costing, non brand retail stores….could it be the economy?…well I am highly doubted. I personally think that perhaps the economic recession has awakened them and led them to realize that spending an outlandish amount of money on a Gucci purse or a Chanel headband is simply absurd. Overall, the American population has gotten a kick in the butt with plummeting economy to finally realize that money spending and investments should be handled cautiously. Celebrities and non-celebrities alike now understand that the value of money is incredibly potent for their every day lives. So rich celebs spending money in relatively cheap stores is actually very smart. Everyone benefits, the consumers, producers, and retailers.

To have a price ranged wardrobe gives people variation and flexibility in their personal shopping habits. I think that tabloids mentioning that celebs are wearing cloths from such stores, is simply an advertisement to help those stores get recognition and hopefully rush shoppers to purchase what the hottest celebrities are wearing. It is way more appealing to know that celebs are actually buying from the stores, so that girls and boys could go and buy that clothing item instead of trying to copy it.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Society shaping the world of fashion

I tend to believe that fashion is an underestimated social force. Society looks over the idea of fashion and dismisses it as something that only pertains to those who care about it, i.e. people who have nothing better to do with their lives. They only enjoy adorning themselves with items that no one else can afford. Children in third world countries, would be considered rich if they have more than 3 items of clothing and an entire meal to last them a day.
It is a web of consumer tastes, personality identity, and habits. Various fashion critics in the nineteenth century, analyzed the origins of expensive tastes and fashion hierarchies. They concluded that upper classes distinguished themselves in terms of clothing to separate themselves from the classes below them. Their styles and practices were emulated by the middle and lower classes, which left the upper classes to reinvent themselves. So is this why the whole notion of brand names and expensive tastes came about? if you notice there is a variable price hierarchy that exists. With brand named items priced at a minimum of $400 a pop (exaggeration of course), and generic brands sold at Kohls and Wal-mart creates a huge a price gap.
I am going to investigate the stigma of brand names later on. But this was just a small overview about the history of fashion and its origins.

Sunday, March 8, 2009


SPRING IS IN THE AIR...everywhere I look around! even in Ithaca, NY. :)

I love the spring. Its a beautiful time of year that blossoms with
flowers and joy seen across the country. The chill of the creeping cold
will pass and then spring will arrive and cover us with color, warmth
and happiness. With that in mind, now that its warmer out (ok 40
degrees is not THAT warm but in according to Ithaca's weather standards
its well...a heat wave). This notion is supported by our dear students
on Cornell's campus struting their stuff in flip flips, shorts,
tshirts, sun dresses ( I am not kidding). But, common now, its not
summer can wait.

So anyway, spring...what will be
popular this spring season in terms of clothing you might ask? well
upon doing some research, I have noticed a common trend of floral
prints, bright bright colors, flowy attire, geometric shapes and well
PURE BEAUTY! (you can probably tell I am in a good mood because its 40
degrees out). As for the males, don't forget that I forgot about
you...floral prints also seem to be the hit. I know that many men do
not view this as very "manly" but it makes you stand out and defies
what the standard trend of fashion for males should be like. Also, a
lot of light colors (not bright per se) but rather whites, beige and
even pastels. Some would even note that pinks and bright blues are in
for men. I didn't really see that on that runways during fashion week
and usually I tend to follow that ideas that the bigger designers
present to the public.

I truly hope that some of these
guidelines can help. Even celebs have been out sporting these trends. I
mean, LA is always in spring mode so those on the far far east coast
can have some fun with the bright springy clothing. ENJOY!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The Dynamics of fashion and the Avant Garde Theory

Although this blog is mainly about analyzing the fashion that is carried out by the elite crowed in LA an NY (to name a few), I want to shift gears a little bit and talk about the word fashion. In particular, its dynamics and what makes it stand out. Author of the Dynamics of Fashion, Elaine Stone defined the word fashion as " the very word conjures up excitement and interest in all of us. Fashion is the ultimate F word! It is faddish, familiar, fantasy, form, fatal, feasible, festive, finite, fit, fresh, and fun. Fashion is the most dynamic of American businesses. It thrives on change, and change is the engine that fuels it” (p. 3). I believe that there is a lot of truth to what she is saying, however I tend to think that fashion is more than just something familiar. It is actually unfamiliar which makes it stand out and fit the category of ‘fashionable.’ According to the theory of Avant Garde in respect to fashion, is once you wear something and
make it fashionable, it is no longer fashionable. Just to give you a background about this term, Avant Garde means “advance guard” and it is derived from the French language. When it is used in the adjective form in English, it refers to people and works that are innovative, pushing the limits or boundaries, particularly in a society’s culture, art, and politics. This term was created by modernists who opposed conventionality. It basically means, appealing the status quo and thinking unconventionally in the cultural realm. With that in mind, the theory of Avant Garde would oppose what Stone is saying in a sense that fashion is familiar, because Avant Garde sets the tone for what is unfamiliar and different. The juxtaposition of both of these ideas stimulates a lot of debate when it comes to thinking about the dynamics of fashion. To me personally, fashion should be heavily emphasized on being unique and unconventional, just as the theory of Avant Garde suggests. However, since fashion is always evolving and constantly changing it never fails to appeal to almost every type of individual who enjoys fashion. So there is a constantly moving trajectory that fashionable items follow. There are certainly people who are trend setters, and when everyone else copies them, they set the tone for the Avant Garde and everyone else follows. In which case, the Avant Garde loses its meaning but something new would usually follow after that.

Monday, March 2, 2009

From Graffitti to Fashion

I am going to attempt to keep this short n' sweet and talk about where people get their fashion inspirations from. As I had noted in an earlier blog, much of fashion's trends or styles come from politics, music, environment, etc. and I was wondering what inspires people today to dress in a certain manner. Is it music? or is it copying what they saw someone famous wear in a magazine? do most people dress with meaning behind their daily clothing options?
One of the most prominent designers, Marc Ecko, who is the founder and chairman of Ecko Enterprises, found his designer calling from painting graffiti on t-shirts. He was very much into art, and expressed his craft through doing graffiti. Many people noticed and he established his small side business of making authentic graffiti t-shirts, which then grew into hats, jeans, jackets, etc. Graffiti is commonly seen spray painted on old walls in impoverished parts of cities. He took that and spun that art out into fashion.
Ultimately, his success grew and he founded his own clothing brand, ecko in 1993. Something as small as graffiti and t-shirts can get you a long way apparently...who knew? So Marc Ecko was inspired by this simple task, so what inspires you? do you think you would be able to create a clothing line from something that has personal meaning to you, it might not even have a personal meaning. However, with this small example, the sky is the limit for fashion inspirations.