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NYFW S/S’15: When Consumers Direct Fashion

Fashion is one of those industries that is considered frivolous, self indulgent, and highly disconnected from the real world. People call it fake, superfluous, and something not for the masses. But what they forget to look at, is that fashion is so much more more than sparkly clothes and spotlighted threads. It’s about the much ignored part of everyone’s lives; growing up. And if time has shown us anything is that fashion has grown up to be something much much more than a grasp-able thing for a select few. Now it is for everyone. Now, everyone can contribute to it.

With so many fashion weeks happening across the globe, and so many new things coming out, it is only natural to feel that fashion has come to a point where saturation of ideas and cuts supersedes the idea that fashion weeks will churn out something new, something exciting, and something that will blow our minds away; fashion is expected to wow the audience. And with the recently concluded New York Fashion Week, it was very obvious that innovation has been taken over by wear-ability, needs of the masses, and the mundane. NYFW came to a point where every other collection seemed forced and one could not help the feeling of having seen it before. It reminded me of the Lorde song Tennis Court where she says “Well, I’m bored.”

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Since I have quoted Lorde’s song here, the song also goes on to say “because I’m doing this for the thrill of it, killin’ it, never not chasing the million things I want.” Looks like the designers are doing the exact opposite of this verse.

What we saw at NYFW was an ode to the consumer. The dresses/clothes shown were highly wearable, even if they were not price compromised, but the runway looks would be the kind of looks one would see “people” wearing. While coming down to the needs of the customer is all good, and feeding the trend of normcore seems like a good idea in a country where on the basis of consumerism thrives companies forward, it should not come as a surprise that innovation got lost along the way. Sure, a few handpicked designers put up beautiful displays of their creations, but fashion week is supposed to be about the clothes and the focus should not be taken away from it. Some of the theatrical designer presentations did have great clothes (Thom Browne for instance) and should not be dissed along with the general shows, but there was so little of what these good clothes and innovative ideas, that NYFW left a really bad taste in the mouth. And it seems so hard to recover from it.

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http://petermcnierneyart.tumblr.com/

Fashion, is first and foremost, a form of art; and I think people, and designers alike, have seem to forgotten that. It is not just about creating clothes that sell – it is about creating art, wearable art. Innovation in fashion is a must if one needs to see new ideas being born. But I think that in the world of street style, and personal style blogging, people seem to forget that there are people out there for whom fashion means more than just looking good. Fashion is an embodiment of our ideas, our beliefs, and our senses. Fashion is supposed to evoke emotions (good or bad), fashion is supposed to make one feel special. Where’s the specialty in wearing high priced logo-ridden clothes that are worn just for the sake of them being the “it” item nowadays. There is no Thrill in it. There is no fun in it.

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A lot of menswear shown at NYFW felt like one had seen all of this before on some ramp somewhere. Yes, sportswear and gypsy urbanite is a trend that seems emerging all over the world, but what I don’t get is why every other designer would want to get lost along the monotony by doing the exact same thing? This need to hop on the trend-specific bandwagon is what drives art away from fashion. We are so blinded by the idea of trying to make it in the world, that we forget that making a mark and creating a collection worth noticing is about not being lost in the crowd but about being able to stand out and think individually, and on one’s own.

Wear-ability accounts for this loss of innovation in fashion. People are so consumed by the idea of looking like something/someone they saw that they forget they have the ability to be an individual, and individuality requires on to think out of the box and be a pink dot when everyone else is wearing black. And designers are feeding this need of the people.

There used to be a time when people would follow designers. But now, in this world of instagram likes, freedom of tumblr reposts, twitter hashtags, and facebook shares, it seems the masses are being the driving force behind fashion; and while to a certain degree it is a good thing letting designer know what you want; but how will we be able to find someone who tells us what we don’t want, or what new things we can have, if fashion weeks keep directing their ideas according to the people’s needs?

9Lines Sunnies – A Unisex Appeal

I think 9lines is one of those brands that you just gotta have because it’s so unique and speaks volumes about one’s taste (read more here). It’s like, if I’ll have 9lines, i’ll be able to stand out from the crowd, and feel like I’m wearing something made just for me.

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That’s the effect 9lines apparel has on me. And their stationery is worth flaunting at school too.

But photophobic people like me, and sunglasses lovers alike, can rejoice because 9lines have come out with their amazingly fun sun glasses range. The sunnies are to fall in love with. They’re stand out material, and will make you feel the special that you are.

You just gotta have em!

Another factor that makes the 9lines phenomenon tick is the androgyny and unisex-iness of the brand. Not many people have delved into unisex fashion in Pakistan, and with 9lines doing something much needed, it comes as no surprise people have fallen in love with it.

Does this mean the audience is warming up to the idea of unisex fashion, or is the whole being different phenomenon that is taking 9lines to new heights? You tell.

While I drool over the glasses…

Here are my favorite picks from the collection

You can order them online on the 9lines page here or the website.

Orange with Black Rim Mirrored Round Sunglasses Group Shots (6) Retro Steampunk Sunglasses Round Striped And Letter Punk Sunglasses for women Light Green Mirrored Round Sunglasses (4)

Photography Credits: HSK Studios

Chameleon by Deepak&Fahad – A Story in Review

There was a time when the sun ruled the world. The trees grew, the fruit was was fresh, and the grass was amazingly green. I used to get up in the morning and feel the love radiating from the earth. Everything was so bright, so beautiful, so love-filled. And in turn, i fell in love over and over, and with everything i saw; Love at every other sight. Love at first sight is overrated. You learn to fall in love with everything every time you look at it. It’s the harmony of the disoriented colors, they fit together like a puzzle meant to fall in love with.

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The puzzle pieces; the people who i am, the personalities I adopt, they make me who i am. And the best thing is, this world where I am, everything fits. My mind, body and soul. All of it.

I danced in the wind like a flower. No. Let me rephrase it. I danced in the wind, for I was a flower.

But then the world changed. Concrete took over. Winds were blocked. And the sun was never seen.

But I didn’t give up. I braved the harshness of the skyless rain, the exhaust air, and the dust of the plastic. I wasn’t going to give up.

I stood tall, stood strong. And I survived. And i might be withered and broken, I still live. I walk on…

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Deepak and Fahad’s  Chameleon collection shown at Fashion Pakistan Week Dubai was a colorful affair that one couldn’t help but stare at, and in a good way. Usually the camo print is associated with army and some may call this military pattern so 2008, Deepak and Fahad put a whole new spin on it and incorporate the color loving man of today’s needs in to the collection by making the prints full of color.

With picket fence, puzzle pieces, and tetris patterns in the collection, it was a breath of fresh air for the kind of person who just wants to have fun with his clothes and wants a breather from all the dapper being spread around..

Deepak and Fahad have stuck to colorful patterns for this collection and it’s safe to say that that is their signature; putting a colorful spin on menswear. The collection will appeal to the younger lot more than it might the older audience, but I think it’s time to make exceptions.

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Outfit – Bow Tie

InstagramCapture_05ee95e4-e28e-42be-8c1a-d52edf1bd407_jpgHere I am wearing the STONEAGE JEANS’ bowtie. It’s a woven bow tie I had been contemplating showing to the world, but how. I had known for long that I wanted it to be this shirt. So I just went along with it. And the brown woven belt is such a look/life saver.

In the back, you can see my room. Will do a detailed post on that once I get the time to set it. You know, boys will be boys, and our rooms will be messy!

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OUTFIT – AIR TIE

BvhQjGKCUAAUY9kIt’s hard to have a formal look and stand out. I really like this shirt for it is plaid, and plaid is such an amazing pattern for this fall. And the air tie is the perfect tie to be sporting in order to look preppy, but not too uptight. If you’re going sans tie, make sure you either get a pocket square or a waistcoat with your jacket, otherwise the outfit would look really incomplete.

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Fickleness of Weirdness in Fashion

cd31edc830e3f3fa785cdcff688de32cIt scares me how self absorbed everyone is becoming. I think a lot of it stems from the fact that our generation wants every one of them to be special. We want to make history. Every one of us wants to leave a mark. And this makes us self absorbed to a a point where it just becomes unbearable.

I have been observing a lot of people like this. Specially the people in fashion. In fashion, everyone aspires to be “some thing”, something so different and unique. Uniqueness is what a lot of individuals in fashion strive for. And in this quest of trying to be different, there’s some personality traits of the people that get washed out in monotony. And that monotony is how they try and break the stereotype, all of the guys, and in turn end up creating a new stereotype that I sometimes question if it is the right way to go about it. Being unique is awesome, but somewhere along the way of trying to be different we get lost in the uniqueness, we lose ourselves.

It devours us. It makes us different, yes, but somehow it alienates us from the rest. It steals our identity. People cannot see past it. I think the ability to relate with others matters a lot. And if one cannot relate beyond the desire to be unique, and not achieve some sort of purity in the process, I think that  one’s being different is of no use. Fashion is supposed to inspire, and evoke feelings, emotions and thoughts that other forms of art cannot. And if a person is so oblivious to the rest of the world, i think the art just fails to leave the mark. That’s one of the reason the cohesiveness of the collection matters so much.

It’s only cohesive if the people staring down the runway see the cohesiveness; the cohesiveness is not just for the designer him/herself, but the ones who see the piece of clothing, and the ones who wear it.

Yes, being weird will get you noticed, and I firmly believe in the quote of Andy Worhol

In the future, everyone will be famous for 15 minutes

Yes, you shall get your fifteen minutes, after that, what? What will you do after that? Who will you be? Will you be someone so deluded by the weirdness and the fickleness of the industry that takes micro seconds to change?

But if you think about it in terms of art, i think it is very necessary to be different and think different. Because a person’s art is an embodiment of who they are and if one is not different, does not think different, how will one create something different. But it does not justify being a self absorbed diva. I think people think being a diva is going to accredit them in front of others. What it does, in turn, is just cone off as very crass and bitchy. Confidence is also something that matters, but it doesn’t mean to diss people. I think a lot of people just think their word is the final verdict, for themselves. But if one thinks that way, how will the mind open up to experiencing and absorbing new things. Its like one needs to be vulnerable to a point where the vulnurabilities become strengths. Get what i mean?

You just need to see deeper than the shallowness projected by fashion. You need to look deep into yourself, regardless of what the fashion makes you believe. You need to find you, and embrace what makes you unique. Not be unique for the sake of being different. What if you are just like the rest of us? What if one is not that unique? You don’t need to be a diva to get far. When Tyra Banks says Fierce, it means embrace the weirdness of you. Not what other people think of you. You can only be fearless if you are true to your roots.

Can you still survive? Yes. You can. Just be you. Do what you love and be who you are.

Superficiality is very transparent. One can see right through it. Be opaque. Be deep. Be who you were meant to be. Be skin deep.

Outfit – Going Tribal

tribal menswear t shirt tee navajo mensI have been in love with the navajo/tribal print for so long, I had been craving for it in some of the menswear brands here in Pakistan. So I was surprised when this shirt caught my eye randomly walking outside my college, which happens to be in a very commercial area. I think this shirt was a steal.

I chose sandals to go along with it to complete the whole tribal look, i mean, i can’t wear shoes to a tribal event, right?! *bad joke*

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Outfit – Grunge

grunge menswear

I think I’m just going through one of my phases where I just wanna be left alone to contemplate about things. So it just fits the whole brooding and moody feel i am going through nowadays. The faded grey jeans, the black tee and my combat boots.

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lalam0814

3rd Feature at IFB Links à la Mode: What Really Matters

I am honored to have been selected the third time by IFB for the weekly Links a la Mode section of Independent Fashion Bloggers. It’s a big deal to be selected out of so many submissions, and having over a 60,000 members i’m so humbled to be among the lucky few to have been selected.

This time, the post selected is

Bareeze Man S/S’14 – The Dapper Road Trip.

My previous posts that made it to the feature were

1. Existentialism and Fashion in Pakistan

2. 5 Innovative Collections from London Collections: Men + Trends off LCM

You can read the posts by clicking on their names.

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Here’s the link up to the feature:-

lalam0814

What Really Matters

This week has been rough for a lot of us. The news is full of terrible things. Sometimes it’s hard to focus when the world seems to be descending into chaos. But, at the end of the day, we all have to show up to our regular lives. Family, friends, work, creating the best life possible. Sometimes fashion seems, well, not the highest on the list of priorities, so sometimes you just have to return to the basics, the classics to work for you while you get your life on track. It’s not all about the clothes.

Links à la Mode: August 14

SPONSOR: East Dane Codes Mackage Bags, Deadly Ponies, Campomaggi, Karla Spetic, Veronica Beard, KG London, Nocturne, Joa, Schnayderman’s, Faithful & Demylee

Want to be featured in Links à la Mode?

1. Read the clarified rules and submit your links on this page: Links à la Mode.
2. If your link was selected and you need this week’s code, visit this page: Links à la Mode Code.

Bareezé MAN S/S 2014 – The Dapper Road Trip

We’ve had a dearth of sartorially lovable menswear brands in Pakistan that cater to a westernized approach to clothing. But latelly things have been changing. One of the game changers to enter the really really shallow waters of Paki menswear is Bareeze MAN. They’ve been active for over two years but now they’ve gone bigger than before by actively showing their Spring/Summer 2014 collection not only at PSFW but also at the recently held Mercedes Benz Fashion Week at Amsterdam.

GIF!!

The collection, obviously is themed around the modern traveler who likes to look good while going on the road trips. The earthy tones of sunset orange, brown, white and blue make it obvious that it chose to hit a spot close to nature, for a road trip through the city is never really a road trip. It stems from the glorious mountains you pass through, the cross roads that confuse you, the waters that seduce you, and the roads that lead to nowhere.

This collection is a homage to the modern man that has the ability to not succumb to the concrete. This collection is a journey of innocence, that connects man to what made him, and in return, falling in love with one’s self all over. It doesn’t hurt that it’s a very masculine collection, too. It’s a basic collection for every man to be worn every day. From work to partying, to hitting the road, it has it all.

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The one at PSFW featured menswear staples that are a must for every man to have in the wardrobe, maybe even the jumpsuit, since it’s making waves everywhere. But what differed was the details this time.

The leather, the suede, the white pants, and the shoes; everything was distinctively modern and spot on!

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The orange camo print jacket/waist coat was heartbreakingly amazing. I loved the leather accents through and through.

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The styling, I admit, looked better than at PSFW. Somehow, the collection seemed more enticing this time, thanks to the styling.

And once again, we look forward to the progress Bareeze MAN will bring to the Pakistani Menswear.

Here are some of the backstage images.

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Images Courtesy: Bareeze Man Facebook Page

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