Sunday, January 10, 2010

Trickling Down...

My friend asked me what my New Year’s resolution was the other day. The number one resolution listed each year happens to be saving money/spend less, but my shopping habits have continuingly thrown that out the window. It is only the second week of January, and this year’s resolution proves to be no different, a disappointment. I could not help myself and went shopping at the mall yesterday. Once home, I looked at all the goodies I purchased earlier and suddenly realized something: the Compact Challenge. This is definitely harder than you think!

While reading a celebrity gossip website today I thought of Kawamura’s observation of sociology discourses in fashion. So, is fashion a ‘trickle-up’ theory or ‘trickle-down’ theory? The trickle-down theory assumes that “fashions are supposed to trickle down from the higher classes to the lower classes,” (19) whereas the trickle-down theory suggests that consumers influences the construction of fashion. In a society that preys on celebrity gossip and fashion, the trickle-down theory does not seem out of reach. Fashion designers persuade the public (celebrities) of their new designs, celebrities wears them and the mass public goes crazy. But once everyone adopts the fashion, it is no longer desirable. As Perrot asserts, there is nothing more social than clothing (6). Consumers are constantly purchasing the next “it” thing; falling for a company’s marketing tactic or which celebrities are sporting/endorsing it.

As Perrot states, “Clothing reveals aspects of the structure and functioning of societies because it both supports and proclaims the hierarchization, regulation, rigidity- or mobility- of social groups” (16). How credible is the connection between clothing and hierarchy? Everything is mass-produced nowadays so everyone can get their hangs on faux mink.

With clothing being important in social environments, celebrity representation of a company’s brand is also important. Will consumers stop buying Hanes if the company did not take Charlie Sheen off their advertisements? Perhaps. Maybe I'm the only one who thinks this... or is the advertisement with Sheen and Jordan for Hanes LOUSY anyway?

Maggie Chui

Entry # 2


Kawamura, Yuniya. Fashion-ology: An Introduction to Fashion Studies.New York: Berg, 2005.

Perrot, Philippe. Fashioning the Bourgeoisie.Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1994.




No comments: