Fashion is an umbrella term for a variety of styles and fashions of dress that are popular today. Fashion is a creative artistic mode of self expression and individuality in a certain cultural context and at a certain time, in a certain location and with a certain social purpose. The word itself indicates a style defined by the fashion business as what is trendy at a given time. The history of fashion is a long one, having originated from the ancient Egypt and Persia period.
Early fashion shows (such as the ones organized by Louis IV, duchess of France) were characterized by lavish display of wealth, ostentatious costumes, exotic decorations, grandeur displays, expensive gifts and “unfair” practices such as skin grafts. Such shows were the fashion show of the times. Later during the Renaissance, fashion tended to be more influenced by the religious viewpoint of the day, with the Church wanting to discourage licentiousness, pornography and immorality. In order to please the Church, the wealthy and powerful wore elaborate and costly clothing. In some ways it still applies to the present day with some designers focusing on luxury and extravagance to gain attention from a demanding customer base.
Fashion has also taken into consideration the effect of the materials being used in clothing. In fact, fashion design is also known as the study of how different materials affect the human body in order to create clothing that is comfortable and practical. This is not to say that fashion designers do not take into account the effect of colors on the human body, or of textures on the skin. But they also know that effect and understanding of human anatomy can help them create clothing that compliments the individual’s body and skin type, thus creating a harmonious whole rather than a collection of distinct pieces that are designed to flatter certain features.
Throughout history, fashion designers have produced clothing for kings and queens, politicians and commoners. The fashion industry works closely with all of these people in order to influence their views and choices in fashion. Through fashion shows, designers are able to display their work before a large audience and influence the public’s perception of a design. Much like marketing, fashion shows serve to introduce a product to the general public in an effort to gain sales and build a company’s reputation.
Because fashion trends are so visible, it is important to view fashion as a business. The success of a designer depends on the ability to predict fashion trends and successfully act on those trends. Successful designers must work with their clients and design clothes that can easily be worn and are fashionable. The process of designing clothes begins with selecting fabric, embellishments and patterns that will be appealing to the target clientele. Once a collection of clothing is selected, fashion designers must then begin conceptualizing the designs, taking into account such things as color, fabrics, patterns and the ability of the individual garments to match each other.
As you can see, the fashion industry uses clothing to influence societal views and the way people dress. Clothes designed by skilled designers can often make or break a business. People who fail to dress properly will not only put their business at risk but their own moral compasses. When wearing clothes that are poorly made or simply uncomfortable, people may become irritated or even angry. For this reason, it is crucial for anyone who wishes to enter the fashion world to know and understand the many aspects of the fashion industry.