I am intrigued and entertained by the DIY (Do-It-Yourself) upcycled movement which has saturated the web and popular culture. An example of the movement’s influence is the recent incorporation of upcycled craft-driven items by fashion designers into the Fall 2013 collections. Fashion has always been known to push the boundaries for shock value and theatrics. Conceptual art is often a great influence. Designers work with used materials which are prosaic and rarely recycled by the average person. With a sense of irony and humor, the brave and confident fashion aficionado is able to pull off these looks. I am entertained and dazzled by these entertaining and fierce fashionistas. This fall season, designers have added mundane household objects such as masking tape, tin foil, rope, and garbage bags to their fashion and accessory collections. The finished looks remind me of projects from the DIY site “PS I Made This”. An accessory or garment is either created or embellished using household items and craft store supplies. Designs, inspired by the latest runway trends, are crafted using step-by-step directions which require the minimum of skills. As I have written before on this blog, fashion is always reinventing itself. However, today, it is struggling to cater to the needs of the contemporary woman while being profitable. Designing an edgy, modern, one-off and daring collection is not as viable as it once was. The market has shrunken thereby edging out those who seek to push the envelope. I want fashion to continue to be fun, outrageous, colorful, and humorous without looking comical, clownish, or tastelessly literal.
Women’s fashion designer icon Elsa Schiaparelli drew inspiration from conceptual and surrealist art to create garments which were ironic yet tasteful. These daring styles were appropriated by Miuccia Prada and Italian fashion brand Moschino decades later.
Elsa’s “Tear dress” (1938) reached the highest standard of art. (Photo: http://e-schiaparelli.tumblr.com/) Love Moschino “Face” blouse. Photo: Moschino online.
Designers continue in this vein but the irony and construction is often contrived. I’m confused as for whom they are designing. Most women I know wouldn’t be confident enough to wear some of the designs that have made their way down the Fall 2013 runway. Still, I want to embrace the season’s trends, even if the items are out of reach price-wise. I intend on recreating these looks myself and confidently roll into the sunset wearing them, exclaiming, “who cares what fashion looks like? Be bold, have fun, be ironic to the max, and use humor in everything.”
Craig Green has masterfully managed to design this stark look for men, which reminds me of the plastic bags that get caught in tall trees lining American highways. I need to know what material he used and how he got those permanent wrinkles in that garment. In the meantime, Craig, I am begging you to recreate this look for women. If you don’t, so help me I will tighten this Hefty bag around my head and accidentally asphyxiate myself.
I really struggled to complete my fashion “Pot-Head” look, so I channeled design inspiration from none other than Elsa Schiaparelli. I recently read that AT&T upgraded and expanded their broadband network into heaven. This enabled me to text Elsa who was busy strumming an aluminum foil mandolin with Salvador Dali.