Day-to-Day Unearthing of 2nd-Hand Finds & Style Ideas
Wednesday, 6 May 2015
FOUND - Sincerest Form of Flattery?
I find ethnic-inspired fashion captivating. It engages my imagination and sets me off wondering, probing, researching. Whether a mock jade necklace or a tartan scarf, a java print blouse or Native American beaded bracelet, I'm drawn to styles that tell a story other than my own. I'm well aware that "the story" is highly managed and edited by the Fashion Industry. Very few of my ethnic fashions are authentic - made AND worn by the cultures they claim to represent. These 2nd-hand finds are a re-telling, a fashion adaptation. But is there anything entirely original? Influence can be subtle but it's unceasingly influential. In fact it seems to me the Fashion Industry would self destruct if it weren't able to call on the creative output of other cultures. That said, non-Western manufacturers, large and small, are producing ethnic fashions for a real and virtual tourist market CLICK HERE. They're adding their own twist - often an act of subtraction - to their own culture, Westernizing their fashion output to suit our perceived tastes. And what of designers like Yohji Yamamoto and Issy Miyake? Rather than capitalizing on the stereotypical exoticism of their culture, they travel a very personal creative road, in an effort to navigate their idiosyncratic vision rather than ethnicity's preordained path. My fake jade necklace - made of stone - was £4.99 at Oxfam in Ealing. A fiver for your thoughts on ethnic-inspired fashion?