As any young freelance designer in Paris will tell you, you must approach design houses in Europe with an answer to their plea for something new and different, innovational and having never been done before. It makes one question weather beauty and wear-ability is no longer important so long as the press makes a comment or two even if those lines in the press are unflattering. After all, there is no such thing as bad press, right?
Interestingly enough, it seems the streets resonate a different attitude as reflected on the bodies of the people who are actually buying the clothes. By in large, it appears people want to look attractive and feel comfortable even as the fashion houses struggle to give the public exactly what they don’t even know the want yet. In fact, society may never want it.
The profession used to dictate what the public will wear. But the times, they are a changing. The public will not bend to fashion rules set out by creative directors tucked away in their ivory towers. The power has shifted, and the educated masses are interrupting a long held pattern. They want us to listen. They know what they want. They want to be surprised each new season, but pleasantly; as a thoughtful lover who remembers you love yellow roses, not an angry slap in the face from someone who is trying to convince them that they “love it”.
It is our job to find out where the key to their hearts is tucked away, find it, interpret what we find inside, and then entice the fashion disciples to choose what they will define as the look of any season. The trick is to interpret the social energy and create a fashion philosophy which reflects the wearers own. That means designers and trend reporters have to tap into every trend from music to the economy to politics with a global perspective. Clients are no longer buying into the “emperors’ new clothes” doctrine; “just trust the experts and wear it weather you like it or not” philosophy. They want real clothes, and they want their attire to reflect their beliefs without having to utter a word. They want their garments to live in synchronicity with their core values.
It is a big job, and finding the synchronicity between the trend setters and the old-school fashion houses is not an easy fit. Luckily, as people begin to discover and trust their own intuition, there are more choices for shoppers to adopt a personal representation. With the interesting new “non-trends” emerging on the horizon; consumers will have even more choice as their buying power increases.
As fashion creators in the world, it is our job to do more than cover bodies so they don’t get arrested in countries where garments are required. It is our duty to listen, hear, and let the public know we understand them and care about what they think. Not just in words, but through our gifts and offerings to them each season.