Thu. Oct 22nd, 2020

Fashion: The Accent’s on You | 1980-1-9

For years, fashion editorials have told us: chic is…style is, is…fashion dictates…fashion commands…what’s in.,.what’s out…what’s hot, what’s cool, what’s cold…what’s good and what’s bad….

As if that weren’t enough, slick magazine articles have besieged us with the beautiful people…the radical chic…the now people…the trendy…the upwardly mobile…and quiet quality. It all sounds like a hard sell.

With so many do’s and dont’s, so many radical changes and so very many rapid transitions, the consumer understandably becomes quite confused.

Now that fashion no longer changes in seven-year cycles, it appears that the arbiters of fashion are floundering. Check out the Paris collections of all the established designers these past four seasons. One need only look at the pages of Vogue, Essence, Women’s Wear Daily, Men’s Wear, L’Uomo and W to learn that even the hippest and richest are catching hell trying to find out what is in!

Perhaps it is time for the individual to take a good look at the individual. Perhaps we will then discover what is right for us. It is time we began to regard fashion and style as not dictated, predicted and demanded by others but rather in the light of our own tastes, lifestyles and physical attributes.

Allow me to reiterate that more money than taste prevails as often as does more taste than money. I opt for the latter. Just look at pacesetters like Josephine Baker, Gladys (Mrs. Lionel) Hampton, Lena Horne, Diahanne Carroll, Dionne Warwick, Leontyne Price, Bill Bojangles Robinson, Cab Calloway, Ron Dellums, Billy Eckstine, Billy Dee Williams and Bobby Short to witness the results of knowing what works for the individual. These stunners have had as much savvy to know what to wear as what not to wear. If these folks were ever afflicted with midriff bulge, cellulite, knock knees, unsightly legs and/or ungainly feet, they were never emphasized, if ever seen! Dressing well has never been directly related to following the trends completely.

Follow the example of the pacesetters. Discover you! Make fashion work for your body, face and lifestyle. Remember: the best barometer is when you are told you look great and not “Thats’ a great outfit”.

Keep reading this issue – next article

See a list of all archived Routes editions