Sunday, 2 October 2011

Fashion Victims

Apparently the term Fashion Victim was coined by Oscar de la Renta to describe "a person who is unable to identify commonly recognized boundaries of style". (Well this is what was passed on to me by Wikipedia...)

The Urban dictionary is less elegant yet far more to the point in its description. According to our street-talking fluent friends "The fashion police should arrest all such persons...Instead of looking chic they will look "over the top" because they have no real taste or style." They take the look from "glamorous to ridiculous". Oh Dear.

So, what exactly are the characteristics and symptoms related to such vile behaviour?
  • A fashion victim's clothes are covered in designer logos.
  • A person who tries to draw admiration through the purchase of expensive brands.
  • A woman who alters her look too much from season to season. (Versace)
  • Someone who adopts the latest trend regardless of whether or not she or he can pull it off.
  • Someone who tries WAY too hard to look hip. 

One thing I noticed while searching for images is that modern day society has labeled Lady Gaga as a major  offender. I disagree. Yes, Miss Gaga searches for and gains a great deal of attention regarding her red-carpet choices however, she is above anything else a perfomer in every sense of the word therefore, it is her job to cause a stir or an impact.
I find it difficult to picture her flipping through Vogue to see what this season's new colour is. Nor can I imagine or have I actually seen her wearing an outfit directly off the runway. Lady Gaga, in my opinion, is not a fashion victim, she is a fashion freak: everything is over-the-top, outrageous and in some cultures most probably considered politically incorrect.

Yes, she brings about the element of the ridiculous, but at the end of the day, I don't think her intention was ever to be glamorous. Let's take a closer look: 

I have no idea who designed these shoes but the person who did obviously hates women.

Avatar inspired, clearly.


Cat Woman Inspired.

I don't think anyone will ever forget this one: the Meat dress.


Homage to the Sun?

All of the above is just mostly appalling, but it is also incredible and takes costume design to a whole other level.

If I had to add my own bullet point regarding what defines a fashion victim it would be:
  • Someone whose choices are unoriginal and based upon what Vogue and designers have decided to label as "trendy" during a given season in time. 

But it's still ok to: 
  • Buy items that are the hit of the season. (Gold is just everywhere in stores right now)
  • Wear clothes that are slightly irreverent but that define your sense of style.
  • Purchase designer labels.  

The point I wish to make is that Fashion is NOT a Discipline. You do not need a magazine to know what looks good and what does not. You can see what's in style, but if it doesn't look good on you please, don't go out of your way to buy it.
P.S Lady Gaga did in fact follow one of my favourite trends: The Bringing Back of the Bow. 

But even then she made it her own: 

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