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Culture & Religion

When in Paris, Never Wear a Pink Cape

Fashion historian Caroline Weber will never forget the time she was riding the Metro in Paris while wearing a pink vintage cape. “Within five minutes I was incredibly uncomfortable because every other woman on the train was wearing either a navy blue, a tan, or a dark green quilted barn jacket. They were all wearing the barn jacket. And they all looked great, and they all had the little Hermes scarf, or Hermes equivalent scarf tied around their necks, and they all had the neat little skirt.” Why are French and American women so different when it comes to fashion? Weber explains.

She also speaks about the political consequences of dress: for Marie Antoinette, it was serious; for Michelle Obama, things are bit a different. But still, Weber makes the point that fashion is integral to the political study of an era, the present one marked by a constant need to change– and quickly! So while the 80s might be in style today, the 60s will be back next week, as designers rush to release as much as they can in as little time possible. 

Pretty soon fashion week will be a parade of instant gratification, as viewers will have the opportunity to buy items from collections while they make their way down the runway. Is this sudden haste of purchase a smart idea for fashion companies? Only time will tell.


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