|"The Great Gatsby"fantastic apology of 20's fashion.|
I’ve got an epiphany! One epiphany that has made me understand everything in a much simpler, clearer, easier way. Don’t get me wrong, I’m talking about fashion, it’s not like I found the recipe for the world’s peace. But being honest, we, the majority of mortals, feel lost regarding fashion. A lack of self-steam attack hits us whenever we go out. We ask ourselves if we were on the wave. Being in fashion is a constant challenge. It requires a lot attention, time to search and money to buy. Ideally, what makes you a brilliant fashionista, worthy of admiration, is mastering that fragile balance in between being one of the first to wear some trend but never one of the lasts. You need to find the right moment between neither being that clown who wears some weird stuff in first instance, nor being one of those who is up for the mainstream when even your mother is wearing it. It’s not an easy work.
Let’s go to the crux of the matter: my epiphany. I call it the twenty minus twenty rule (20 – 20). As you can see it is not a complicated algorithm, (that’s all my maths can give). The concept is the following: everything from 10 years ago is crap but if it’s 20 years ago it’s very cool. So the 20 years back fashion is now mainstream again. But there is a trick here. If now it’s in vogue what was fashion twenty years ago it means that, twenty years back, the trend was the fashion of twenty more years back so – 20 – 20. That is to say, fashion is actually a repetitive recycling of designs. I’ll give you an example: right now, 2016, the fashion is 90’s but also we have some seventies hippy features. However we’ve been living an overwhelming success of the so call vintage fashion, which is basically the 50’s fashion. So again, 20 – 20 – 20. 90’s, 70’s and 50’s. Why is like this? Well, it’s simple: fashion is a huge industry and designers and manufacturers don’t want to take any risk.
By repeating designs and styles that were successful in the past they ensure their profits. This has been like this since the start of the ready-to-wear factories (AKA prêt-à-porter) around 60’s and 70’s. Before that it was all about tailored clothes, more expensive, though, but better quality. Nevertheless, the ready-to-wear industry was a revolution. People could afford to buy new clothes more often. But how to stimulate them to expend more? By creating new trends every season making people feel the need of buying new clothes, not because their old ones are damage, but to be à la mode. This marketing strategy has been so effective that now we have 52 mini seasons!!
|Spice Girls 1996|
|"Romeo + Julieta" 1996|
With this rule in mind, now it’s very easy to predict the future trends. Let’s do an experiment. We are in 2016 so twenty years before… What was going on in 1996? Voilà! Spice girls just release her first album “Wannabe”! “Friends” was in its thirds season and the movie of the year was “Romeo + Juliet”! Well, just check out those pictures, they talk by themselves. The fancy coloured hairs and those horrible platform boots, which I used to love when I was teenager, will be back again for sure. Talking about platforms, what period were they a typical feature? Oh, yes, it was 70’s.
Let’s carry on with the experiment. I subtracted 20 more so I googled 1976 and we found that the Charlie’s angels was aired on TV that year, “Rocky” was on the theatres and Abba got an overwhelming success with ‘Fernando’.
Going further back I have checked what was on in 1956. That year Elvis Presley impressed the whole world with his performance of “Hound Dog”. It was also the year that James Dean summed up fans with “Giant” and Marilyn Monroe was having the time of her life. I’m just going to say one thing: Look at those shoulder pads that Elvis wears in the picture. What other period do they remind me…?
|Elvis Presley "Hound Dog" 1956|
Well, if my rule is 100% right the prospects for this year fashion is a bit scary. Luckily this is not pure science (not even pure maths) and the proof is that some times it appears some anomalies in the fashion world. For instance, that timid but wonderful trend, that has been showing up here and there, inspired by the twenties fashion. It’s not like is fully successful but it’s there. The showbiz soon echoed this fashion, like Baz Luhrman with ‘The Great Gatsby’ movie (2013). This fact is very encouraging. It means that still there is space for creativity and real originality for the designers.
After my lately discovering I’m thrilled to find out what fashion will bring us. However, I’ll keep applying the 20 – 20 rule to be easily sure I’m not démodé, just in case.