The runways and collections this season I am following on a daily or twice daily schedule are boring me. And I cannot tell if it’s my distance from the hype of fashion week. Or that in stepping away from the circus has given me clarity on the relevance of the runway. It just doesn’t seem cool or relevant anymore. The theatrics of fashion brought to us by McQueen and old 90’s/early 2000s Galliano seem dated now. Back then they were exciting, because every other catwalk was standard and straight edge and boring. The theatrics added an environment to the clothes and accessories, the show madness and sets and performances added ambience. Now you have brands who have no business even doing a runway show giving us an extravaganza ala McQueen, minus the beautiful clothes. It has become a distraction from shitty commercial clothes that should not be wasting our time on a catwalk. I don’t mean to sound cynical, but I just don’t think the runways are inspiring any more. I am finding “real” people far more inspiring than any collection on VogueRunway.com. My pinterest feed of “real” people and my real life run in with people (OFF THE FUCKING SOCIAL MEDIA) is providing me more inspo. What world is this? I have been inspired by the shows for the past 20 years. I have been following the collections with a keen fascination and love since I was 15! Is it my age making it feel boring? Is it my past 15 years of working in luxury fashion where I now know what is happening behind the scenes that is causing my cynicism? The clothes on the runway usually don’t make it to any store. Most of the clothes and the accessories are never produced, these precious (or wasteful?) items are shot by magazines ad nauseum, and then the customer (who is most likely by numbers the average age of 45-50 years old) tries to buy these things she has seen in the relic known as a mag and cannot find them. It seems useless to look at collections that will only be knocked off by Zara, H&M and Forever 21 made in some sweatshop for college girls to buy for $40. Am I bored of the collections because I am not interested in buying these clothes anymore? I have beautiful suits, shirts, knits from Celine, Bottega Vennetta, The Elder Statesman and Chanel, which will never need replacing. I have my designer wardrobe built, and to be honest I feel like buying much of anything else is just part of my shopping addiction (more on that in another post). With my reality revolving around living between three cities (two of which are freezing most of the year), my wardrobe and inspiration for it is driven by utilitarian values, quality and simplicity. My wardrobe purchases now are inspired by supporting small, independent, artisanal brands made with love. For my styling work, I find this conundrum even more perplexing. When someone asks me what I would like to shoot for a story, I hark back to artists, photographers and pop culture or real life people who inspire me, not the runway. So my real question here is: Is the runway still relevant? My immediate answer is NO. But I need to stew on this further. Maybe a batch of designers will pop up next season that will change my mind. But for now, the runway feels like a rehash of every reference fashion people love with nothing new or exciting to change my eye. It feels like a media circus for instagram likes, that don’t lead to anything substantial! For the fashion business or the customer! Again, I am PMSing and maybe I am just moody as fuck, but I have been thinking about this since NYFW reared it’s ugly head.
Anyway, I still love fashion, now I need a new inspiration.