Oct 25, 2009

Extravagance, and Hating the term Recessionista.



I was perusing the posts by the superfly and ever eloquent ladies at Fashion for Writers and one of Meggy Wang's most recent posts was about this vintage wartime poster and a faux fur coat that she owns.  This issue has actually been on my mind a little bit lately and for more on what FFW thinks check out there Heart to Heart: Wearing a Cocktail dress to the Grocery Store or, the Implications of Overdressing. 
I for one dress up when I want, and how I want.  I'm kind of rebellious like that.  Its a gift and a curse really, been doing it since I was little, can't help it.  Although when I was 6 it took more of a chaotic mismatched form, and now that I'm older its, um, well still chaotic and mismatched but a little more mature.  More importantly though, they are speaking to fears and concerns that a lot of us have.  While, yes I like to rebel with fashion, I'm still aware of say what my boyfriend's sister in law thinks, or my professors and fellow classmates think. 
I feel that fashion 'proper' meaning the definition that the majority of the populous applies to the word fashion, (i.e. runways, glamour shots, Photoshopped perfection, unwearable stylings, underfed models, and unrealistic price tags) is being challenged by bloggers.  In fact it is our duty as Fashion bloggers to challenge the perception that Fashion is purely superficial vanity.  While it is true that concern with one's looks is, by definition, superficial (existing or occurring at or on the surface) for us, it is also much more.  It has been stated by blogstar  Liz of Late Afternoon that fashion can be something akin to fantasy in that we make ourselves whomever we want to be for the day based on what we wear.  It is at times a psychological ploy that we have with ourselves.  You might think that I'm over analyzing it but I think that it is necessary to do so in order to be taken seriously.
In relation to the concerns that I occasionally have with what people think about my three inch heeled boots as I clamor noisily up the Cathedral of Learning steps, is the issue presented in the above poster.  This country is slowly coming out of a recession, we're in a war abroad and engaged in an open ended war on terrorism among other things.  Its almost as if people consider fashion to be purely selfish.  But its actually more of a community now than ever before.
On the issue of the economy, although I work very hard for my money and I am careful to spend it wisely, people might generally make the assumption based on how I dress that I spend extravagantly.  Untrue.  I thrift, shop on ebay, shop vintage, wear my sisters clothes, and buy from other bloggers, and also limit what I allow myself per paycheck.  Such shopping habits have become signifiers labeled by the retched term, recessionista.   I detest this term because it implies that I shop this way because of the current economy, when in fact I shop this way for a myriad of other reasons.  I find more eccentric pieces, I don't feel the need to spend a lot of money on clothes all of the time, it is convenient, it is inspirational, it promotes recycling, and it supports small independent designers/stylists.  I would call it being responsible to be honest.  Because what it really is, is participating in an ever burgeoning grassroots creative community, which in turn is fostering a more intelligent way of thinking about fashion, a competitive drive for start-up fashion entrepreneurs, and a more transparent and honest form of media coverage for the industry.
Alright, I'm done ranting now...I should probably be doing homework of some sort....later gators :)
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