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Is Fashion a kill joy ?

A parade of SAD girls, stylists on the verge of BURN-OUT, dark colors, stark shapes… Why is fashion often the VICTIM of chronic neurasthenia? Is despair a saleable commodity? HAPPILY there are those who successfully advocate another vision of style that is sunnier, happier and more POSITIVE.

Disembodied. In both the real and figurative sense of the term. Ever thinner and ever sulkier, girls on fashion runways and pictured in magazines almost all have the same profile today. No question of stealing the show from an item of clothing or a bag! It is a far cry from the time of supermodels such as Linda Evangelista, Stephanie Seymour, Naomi Campbell and Cindy Crawford. A whole era that is well described in the biopic released last summer on John Casablancas, creator of the Elite agency. The paradox is that everyone remembers the spirited imagination of an Inès de la Fressange or the anti-conformism of a Kate Moss, but today? Times have changed and fashion has become a veritable business in which the product is king and the model an interchangeable accessory. We have shifted from “look pretty and be quiet” to “be sad and model” as if a disillusioned arrogant expression made brands more desirable due to greater inaccessibility


One might make the connection between a civilization and a desire to retreat towards dark colors, minimalist shapes or even grunge temptations. Maybe. There is unquestionably a cultural side to fashion trends. The Belgian school embodied by La Cambre in Brussels and “Les Six d’Anvers” in the 1980s as well as the Japanese wave during the same era reflects the frame of mind of a society at a particular moment in time. However, this dark side has spread a lot further than that and set the tone for collections over most of the world. One simply has to stroll through the streets of New York or Paris to notice that black is unquestionably the new black, with a very few exceptions.

Par Anne-Marie Clerc

Adopting a certain futility

Often accused of futility, fashion deserves a lot better. As Christian Dior said: “There is no greater futility in the world than in poetry or song.” The current look that is reinvented every season has the virtue of a certain carefree attitude and futility in terms of taking refuge in black so as to compensate for a hypothetical lack of seriousness. Let’s demand the right to a bit of fun, to taking things lightly. While fashion is a billion-dollar industry and enables valuable expertise
to be perpetuated, it is also a game. Let’s be daring and indulge in a bit of
daily frivolity…

There is joy…

At least there is hope! Certain designers have demonstrated with great talent that chic does not only come dressed in black. In this regard, big names such as Jean Paul Gaultier, Dolce & Gabbana, Moschino, Chloé and Miu Miu have long advocated another, sunnier, brighter, more colorful vision and have not forgotten a touch of humor. Tribute is also due to Sonia Rykiel whose finale at fashion shows was always festive, with girls roaring with laughter. So why not find a bit of joy in the dressing room? Don’t forget the popular adage: “You are what you wear!” Food for thought as a wave of bubblegum pink and glittering spangles is being touted as a top-rated trend for fall-winter 2016-17!


Final du défilé Sonia Rykiel Printemps-Été 2009
© Getty images - K. Prouse/Catwalking

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