Sunday, October 13, 2013

Guardian Life Article 13/10/13 - No Country For Trends

This is a rebuttal to the article I wrote last week on the hot new trends. It is my prerogative to contradict myself.

Fashion trends are a farce.

An astute eye would notice exactly how fashion editors, blogs, photographers, stylists, magazines; in other words, spin doctors; attempt to convince us that each year, each season brings something new. When in actual fact it’s just trends from the year before; bigger, better, shinier…on younger and newer faces.

The fashion calendar is broken up into two seasons; Spring/Summer and Autumn/Winter, with each season having its own distinct trend which we must all, on pain of being unfashionable, adhere to.

In the Spring, starting from around February pastel colours come back into fashion; Lavender, Mint, Apple, Cerulean, Ivory, Blush etc, making it seem like we’re trying to atone for the ostentatiousness of the previous holiday month.

As Spring/Summer gains momentum and we start moving forward to the wedding months, starting from April, floral becomes the order of the day. Suddenly everyone just HAS to have something in floral or they’re not on trend at all. Every wedding in this season will have at least 70% of the female attendees in floral dresses or separates.

As the weather gets warmer and layers start coming off, the colours amp up into vibrant technicolour and suddenly neon is the “it” shade. If your yellows, blues and oranges aren’t blindingly fluorescent you might as well move back to the boondocks.

The gloriously hot months of July and August dictate that everybody must be in barely there clothing, with not exactly toned down, but warmer colours. 2011 took that to a whole new level with the trend that refused to die and has apparently become a mainstay; colour blocking; the deft art of intentionally clashing colours as far away from each other on the colour spectrum as possible.

Autumn begins unofficially in September and as the days start to get a bit chillier the light-heartedness of the summer months are suddenly persona non-grata and colours start to get a bit more muted, now instead of a glorious Scarlet, designers churn out identikit clothing in Burgundy, instead of screaming Orange, we get subdued Rust, instead of acid Green, we get Forest. As the leaves fall from the trees the colours get darker and darker, the prints become increasingly sinister, paisley, animal prints from leopard to python to pony to giraffe…….we’re all suddenly serious minded people again.

Then the apex of it all, the month long party that is December, everybody is suddenly draped in sequins and glitter, trying to one up the next person, all culminating in the party night to end all party nights; New Year’s Eve, where you must don your shiniest, most outrageous outfit, a combination of all the trends that made an appearance that year.

After this climax of course comes January, the month of austerity and the cycle begins again.

Think about it, this rotation repeats itself without fail, every single year. There are a few variations on the trends and they are tweaked a bit to show some originality but nonetheless every year we start off with pastels, then florals, the neon, then brights, then muted colours, darker prints and climaxing in glitter.

Therefore, fashion trends are a farce.

As human beings we all believe we’re different from the next person yet strive so hard to look exactly the same. There’s nothing stopping you from wearing animal print in April or sequins in August, or wearing a black jumpsuit and a croc fascinator to a summer wedding.

Now why I love Nigeria and Nigerian fashion is because we have 365 days of summer, we are not constrained by the dictates of Ms. Wintour, Nigerian fashion designers luxuriate in the fact that their designs are not hidebound by changing seasons and therefore have the artistic freedom to churn out gorgeous frocks regardless of what time of the year it is.

After all it’s a party every day in Nigeria.

Fashion rules say otherwise but the only rule is that there are no rules.

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  1. You hit the nail on the head. We keep recycling the same thing year after year. The only down side of our everlasting summer for me is we don't get to wear coats,layering of clothes and other nice winter dressing I love and admire on people.

  2. Nice write-up and I wholeheartedly agree!

    I also miss layering, sweaters, boots and fall/winter clothes like dazzy.

  3. That Rihanna's picture got me bending my back! Whaaaa..

  4. Okay now I've actually read the article.. You aren't even lying..

    Lol @ 'It is my prerogative to contradict myself.'..

    What's actually funny is the seriousness at which we even talk about and take on these trends when the wheel spins up on us again. The industry is so much if you can't beat them...


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