For the 2009 woman, fashion is vast, varied and most importantly – accessible. Our high streets are overflowing with department stores, fashion chains and independent designer boutiques. In more recent years, the internet has offered us choices and opportunities like nothing we have ever known before and the ability to buy new or used clothing from anywhere in the world.
Gone are the days of carefully selecting your favourite dressmaking pattern, gathering the right materials and spending hours creating the most up to date look by hand. Does anyone even sew any more? The most we have to do is pull out the laptop, browse our favourite sites and wait for the perfect outfit to land on our doorstep. Heaven forbid it takes longer than 2 days to arrive. But is it really that easy?
Firstly here's the eternal array of different fashions on offer... What flock we follow? What icon we worship? There's goth, hippy, vintage, emo, casual, glam, indie, rock chick, sporty, trendy, retro, skate, surf, burlesque... need I go on? Whatever we choose we can be sure there are plenty of retailers both on-line and on the high street, all fighting for our business and offering everything we could possibly want or need.
But of course the choices don't end there. You couldn't possibly just buy 'a dress'. Is it mini or maxi? Shift or smock? Boob tube, halter-neck, strappy or wrap? Floral, striped, block colour, monochrome, neon or checked? Then there's fabric – cotton, silk, nylon, linen, denim, chiffon, satin, lycra, viscose? And maybe a little extra detail – beads, sequins, lace, diamanté, buttons, bustles and zips. And not to forget length and shape– mini, midi, knee length, maxi, a-line, pencil, swing, full or straight? It's enough to give the most laid back amongst us a headache.
But it's not just clothing we need to consider – footwear, jewellery, hair, make-up, nails, skincare, handbags, watches, scarves, hats, glasses and perfume – each one a single piece of the jigsaw that makes every woman so unique.
Each element of our image is so carefully considered and so dramatically influenced. The music we listen to, the books and magazines we read, the television programmes and films we watch and the circle of friends we keep. As well as a million other financial, seasonal and climate driven reasons.
Our fashion is fast paced, relentless and ever changing but we love it to pieces and it just keeps growing. Recession or no recession, fast fashion is here to stay – the love of shopping is in our genes!
All things considered, it's surprising that we manage to get dressed every day (never mind look so fabulous) but these exciting and dynamic decisions are what most women clearly thrive on. Spoilt for choice? Absolutely not – anything less simply wouldn't do...
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