What’s my line?

Posted on 4th May, by Colin Chapman in Fashion blogging. No Comments

After a recent comment that my blog of late is becoming “too industry”, and needs to get back to being “a bit wilder” I decided to get back to basics and pin my flag to the mast again. In the build up to a General Election where the personal freedoms of the last decade and a half are under threat there has never been a better time to express an individual view.

After a post on E.Tautz and last week’s meet up with Patrick Grant it may be assumed that I’m maturing into a perspective where tailoring is key. But for me what someone like Patrick does is all about a passion for quality and turning things on their head so that ‘establishment’ looks become edgy and cool. What people wear on the street and the concepts and ideas they evoke are really still key for me.

And what I’m really feeling right now has a lot to do with authenticity, about living it for real. I think that’s a big part of our current fascination with photo documentarists like Backyard Bill, Mr Mort and The Facehunter. Of course, their ethnography is very honed in on a certain lifestyle, with a certain amount of polish added, but they’re still showing real people living their lives in gritty, urban cities like London and New York where one has so much choice about how to live.

Authenticity is a thorny issue in fashion, a case in point being the band T-shirt. Once worn as a badge of pride, a commitment to an artist or tribe, the more worn and faded the better, its now mass produced and sold at Topman, often to a teenager who really doesn’t care who X-Ray Spex were. And I’m not suggesting he should care, just postulating about how ideas currently get recycled and reworn, into just dressing up ‘as’.

Music, art and fashion are interlinked. This might sound obvious but the people who are really looking great and interesting to my mind right now are mainly involved in doing something else besides fashion.

So that was a lot of words, which is another part of what I’m about, if fashion is worth anything, the idea has to be as important as the image.

To end, here’s some images I’m currently inspired by: gender illusionist and legendary doorperson Jeanette (from the Facebook page celebrating his eponymous pop-up boutique at Start), the late artist Dash Snow, a noted hair stylist in New York City (via The Facehunter), man at Tokyo flea market (The Sartorialist). Men living their lives all, with marvelous diversity and amazing personal style.

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