Fashion is a sort of autonomy and self-expression in a given time and place and at a given context, typically of clothing, shoes, life, accessories, cosmetics, hair styling, and personality. In its broader usage, the word also means a style determined by the fashion industry as what is fashionable. It can be defined as a set of ideals that influence the creation and distribution of fashion-related objects, such as clothing, accessories, adornment and other goods and services for personal and institutional use. It also includes the social aspects associated with fashion, such as those associated with beauty standards, ideals, styles, fashion trends and other aspects of the visual arts. This article discusses the history of fashion, examines the varied applications and fundamental elements of it, and traces its evolution over time. The paper is organized into chapters focusing on each of these aspects.
In the history of fashion, the influence of culture is discernible in its objects, materials, processes and ideas. For instance, in early times, cloth was the ruling fashion material, indicating class and social status. Fashion can be understood as a process of producing a product according to existing cultural standards. Aspects of culture are seen in objects, fabrics, patterns, images, customs and modes of dress. It is also influenced by how people of different cultures interact with one another. As an example, in many societies, women are the ones who are allowed to enter into the home dressed formally while men are the ones who enter in suits, tuxedos and other formal clothes.
The history of fashion is incomplete without the stories of the people who created it, worn it and experienced its ramifications. One of the most significant early figures in the history of fashion is the French artist Victor Hugo. Hugo was a pioneering Parisian artist whose illustrations helped establish the principles of modern design. Others who played an instrumental role in the development of fashion are Diderot, Balmain, Fauve and others. Throughout the period of history, fashion shows and publications have given detailed accounts of various fashions, giving consumers a vivid idea about the available options for them.
The history of fashion is often intertwined with that of history and culture, as both are rooted in the interactions of men and women. Fashion designers try to depict what is currently fashionable or what is considered absurd through their works. They use costumes, hairstyles, jewelry, make-up and other materials to portray the latest fashion trends.
From a broad perspective, fashion designs are seen not only as mere devices used to create a new appearance, but also as representations of societal roles and norms. The modern world is full of extravagant displays of wealth and splendor, causing some to compare such trends to the fashions worn by past generations. While some people see fashion as a mere diversion from what’s truly important in life, there are others who view fashion as a way of expressing themselves, conveying their culture and expressing their value system.
Today, there are many stores that specialize in providing clothes with different patterns, designs and colors. These stores usually have an in-house department that curates fashion designs from around the globe. Online shopping for fashionable clothes has become a norm for many people, especially for those who don’t live near a boutique. There are many fashion-forward people who take modern fashion to a whole new level by dressing like celebrities or by taking on a completely unique style.