The new collection overturns the codes of elegance, by playing with fashion staples in a provocative way. Weaving together graphic touches, geometric lines and large, classic shapes, stylistically reinterpreting the silhouettes. The new Prada Mod glasses flaunt an elegant design, highlighted by a sophisticated construction with acetate detailing framed by metal profiles. A creative mix of s inspirations and contemporary notes.
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It is hard to identify a fad until it has fizzled. Perhaps the timespace nexus associated with contemporary fashion cycles is at issue: Nevertheless, a case can be made for interpreting the concept of fad for its historical, heuristic, and analytical significance.
Issues of time, identity, stylistic detail, expression, and emotion all come into play in contemporary life, regardless of what we call the phenomenon in question. Historically, the term has been used to characterize collective behavior that may range from an article of clothing or an accessory or how it is worn to a hairstyle or other way of grooming.
Or, it may describe toys or gadgets, or even activities or practices that do not require consumer purchase. Fads tend to be: According to the Oxford English Dictionary the term is related to the earlier concept of fidfad short for fiddle-faddle.
It is interesting to note that the Oxford English Dictionary has not added new entries for the concept since its edition. However, it has generated related concepts that deserve careful attention: By the s, the concept of trendy had become well-entrenched in everyday speech.
Dating back to the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, the concept of a trend implied divergence from the mainstream—initially in the context of physical or geological manifestations for example, streams, currents, or valleys. By the s, the idea of trend analysis had taken hold in the social context as well.
The former appear and spread without the involvement at least initially of an entrepreneur or business. Usually a spontaneous fad can be pursued without an extensive monetary commitment; it tends to be behavioral in nature.
Although there may be heuristic reasons for making distinctions between spontaneity and sponsorship in fads just as there might be similar reasons for distinguishing fads from fashionsthe two often become inextricably intertwined, especially in a commodified, branded, and celebrity-oriented consumer culture.
First, it is difficult to ascertain in advance what will endure. Second, most fads or trends seem to include a commodity in some way, even maybe especially if it is somewhat affordable. Apparently, some analysts were able to spot or hunt trends so as to capitalize on them in some way.
Subcultural style, in particular, is open to such appropriation. In the mids, British working-class youth experimented with safety pins as accessories, with the use of Vaseline to spike their hair, and with ways of ripping their clothes.
These looks were soon appropriated by top fashion designers and the apparel and beauty industries. Similarly, the hip-hop styles of inner-city often African American youth in the United States in the late s became mainstream even in the suburbs of white, middle-class youth populations.
Both of these examples were innovated by limited segments of society and then became more mainstream. But the time factor does not quite fit the classic definition of a fad.
Whereas some adults might describe this look as a fad, younger people might simply characterize it as a longer-lasting fashion that resonates with some individuals and groups their age.
The approximately year-old concept of fidfad reminds us that a fad is likely to be in the eye of the beholder.
For example, when does the tendency to be trendy or faddish merge into that of becoming a fashion victim? Not surprisingly, the concept of fashion victim is usually used in a diminutive or depreciative way.
The concept of a fad is frustrating and difficult to distinguish from fashion in general. Issues of time, identity, fun, commodification, appropriation, looking back, and moving forward all relate to the concept of fad as it has been used historically and analytically.
None of these issues is without its own ambiguities. Still, fads, by any name or duration, are likely to remain a part of how we live and change. See also Fashion Advertising; Trendsetters.
The End of Fashion: The Mass Marketing of the Clothing Business. William Morrow and Company, Ads, Fads, and Consumer Culture: Rowman and Littlefield Publishers, Inc.Harrington Collection Case Analysis.
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