The Business of Fashion
Fashion is a term used to describe the styles of clothing and accessories worn by people at any given time. It can also be used to refer to the business of fashion, which is a multibillion-dollar industry devoted to the business of making and selling clothes.
The history of fashion can be traced back to late medieval times, although changes in clothes styles have been around longer than that. Historians generally believe that the start of continual and increasingly rapid change in clothing styles can be dated to about the middle of the 14th century, when the Western outline of a tailored top was first introduced into men’s over-garments.
Today, the world of fashion encompasses an incredibly diverse range of industries and services. In many countries, the fashion industry employs millions of people. It includes the design, manufacturing, distribution, marketing, retailing, and advertising of all types of apparel (men’s, women’s, and children’s) from the most rarefied and expensive haute couture to ordinary everyday clothing–from couture ball gowns to casual sweatpants.
Some observers distinguish between the “fashion industry” (which makes “high fashion”) and the “apparel industry” (which makes “mass fashion”), but by the 1970s the boundaries were blurring.
Fashion has a huge impact on society and culture. It can create a sense of identity and tradition, or it can be a way to express one’s political beliefs.
A person can be considered fashionable if she wears clothes that are currently trendy or en vogue. This is what people usually mean when they say “fashionable” or “trendy.”
The fashion industry is a major contributor to the economy of most developed nations, and it employs millions of people worldwide. It is the largest single sector of the global economy, and it generates billions of dollars in earnings every year.
There are many different kinds of clothes, but some are more popular than others. The most popular type of clothes is what is called “ready to wear.” These are garments that are made in large quantities and sold at malls or markets. These are typically cheaper than designer fashions and they are made from inexpensive materials.
Other clothing can be considered fashionable because they are made by designers with a high level of skill and creativity. Some of these designers are well-known and they make clothes for a very high price.
Unlike ready-to-wear, designer fashions are produced by a number of people and often are created using more expensive materials and fabrics. They are designed for a specific market and have the name of the designer on them.
Style can also be a way to distinguish yourself from the rest of your group. For example, a teenager with green hair and multiple piercings may be perceived as “goth” or a “skater.” This is a way of separating yourself from other groups who have more uniform looks.
Historically, fashions have often been used as political weapons. In nineteenth century England, for instance, laws prohibited people from wearing clothes that were produced in France. During twentieth century communist revolutions, uniforms were often used as an attempt to abolish class and race distinctions.