All posts filed under: ISSUE 3

“About Fashion”, by Nicole Clinton

The Oxford English Dictionary’s definition of the word ‘fashion’ is “a popular trend; producing and marketing styles of clothing etc.”, only barely verges on the true meaning and potential of fashion. While it often finds itself unjustly dismissed as a subject of frivolity, this is a grave misconception. Fashion’s function is in fact so complex that it is rooted in paradox as it operates on the basis of the amalgamation of opposites. Its effects can mirror the cathartic power of any good piece of art, ranging from awe to tragedy to comedy. It performs as a reputable tool for the sociological study of any given era, race or gender and also acts as both a physical manifestation and stimulus of psychological feelings. Fashion is a soldier of great valour, honoured with the task of executing its duties in opposing territories. It possesses the ability to serve contradictory purposes through its paradoxical functions. For example, fashion is a means through which one may stand out from the crowd by exemplifying a unique sense of style. But …

“Georgia O’Keeffe” Exhibition Review by Ludovica Colacino

Georgia O’Keeffe. It’s part of the human nature to try and categorize a subject in order to understand it in depth. Though, there is an exception to this unwritten rule of human behavior: rationalization, however, it may increase the separation between a subject and its viewer – which will inevitably lead to only a projection of what we think it’s real. Georgia O’Keeffe was an artist that critics have struggled to put in a determined artistic movement – today we refer to her as the American icon of modernism, even if it covers over one hundred years from the 1850s to roughly the 1960s. O’Keeffe’s extensive archive and studies show how she kept herself distant from the majority of the artistic movements and groups, but only channeled her true self in company of her partner, the American photographer Alfred Stieglitz. Alfred and Georgia’s intimacy is reflected in the works of both of them: Stieglitz would often ask Georgia to pose for him and focused his attention on her hands, face, or her body as whole. …

“Repeal the 8th”, by Nicole Clinton

Repeal the 8th: A Matter of Choice. Nicole Clinton discusses Ireland’s Repeal the 8th movement. * “Currently sold out, our store is opening again soon, thank you for all the support so far in making this issue seen and heard.” This is the message that one was greeted with when after clicking on to view Irish website, repeal.ie in mid-October. The much sought-after product that the message refers to was the visually striking REPEAL jumper that saw political statement meet fashion statement in an innovative and blatant manner. The simple black creation with the word ‘repeal’ plastered across it in white capital letters, may look like a slogan sweatshirt that crept out of a nineties style revival, but it is actually a way of creating awareness for an issue that has triggered heated debates throughout Ireland in recent years and has just about reached boiling point. Its popularity is a testament to the overwhelming support for the ‘Repeal the Eighth’ campaign which seeks to allow free, safe and legal access to abortion in Ireland. The ‘Eighth’ …

“Gender by Design”, by Emily Stoker

Gender by design. Fashion is a new way into the feminist conversation. With designers such as Timur Kim, and Grace Wales Bonner, furthering the new feminist agenda by creating clothes that unite rather than divide. Their designs elicit a sex-positive strength that reinforces the gradual dissolution of gender binaries in the fashion industry. Supporting their efforts are independent publications such as The Gentlewoman, and Riposte, who encourage the application of feminist thinking in all areas of the arts, both online and offline. The growing support from the editorial industry is crucial, as it motivates artists with similar principles to create enduring, referential and self-explicating work. Moving our culture and communities towards a shared value system based on equality and helping gender bias to dissipate. The aforementioned designers are in good company, as they work with their teams to ensure equality is maintained throughout the entire design process. Using feminine and masculine reference materials to plan and develop concepts for their collections. Filtered into pattern cutting and construction techniques which give greater flexibility in shape and silhouette. Unisex brand …

“Body Honesty”, by Abi Buchanan

Body Honesty. I’m going to say it. The word that has women quaking in their boots, living off black coffee and cashew nuts, gulping air for lunch. Fat. The word that’s the strongest weapon in anyone’s arsenal, the insult that’s guaranteed to hit where it hurts. This is the word that taught us a BLT is ‘naughty’, and that allowed a diet industry worth 2 billion pounds to flourish. In February 2016, I attended London Fashion Week. I wandered spellbound around presentation after presentation, seeing racks of beautiful clothes in a size I usually reserve for my feet: a tiny 4, contrasting starkly with my cumbersome 12. I could probably fit one thigh in the dresses, one arm in the trouser legs. Women this size, had I not seen them in the flesh, could be creatures of myth. My self-consciousness was further exacerbated at a show I attended one afternoon, where I, the event photographer, was mingling and snapping the guests. I knew no one and so was sitting by myself drinking a beer (a …

“Loving Your Lines”, by Amy Jackson

Loving Your Lines. For centuries, women’s bodies have been under scrutiny, and society typically focuses on a perfectly smooth, hairless, curved in all the right places female body, resulting in surprise and often shock when faced with the true human form in all its spotty glory! In recent years, however, there’s been an increase in people’s acceptance and honesty towards their bodies, and amongst other breakthroughs such as body diversity, stretch marks are finally being celebrated. Stretch marks are an inevitable part of life that almost every person encounters in some form. They can happen for lots of different reasons, such as weight gain, muscle gain, weight loss and pregnancy, and to people of all shapes and sizes. Chrissy Teigen hit headlines last month after posting a Snapchat that revealed her post-childbirth stretch marks, proving even models aren’t perfect, and just as human as the rest of us. This celebration of stretch marks has been an artistic inspiration for many. Photographer Chloe Newman, has created a series of images that highlight the beauty of the …

“The Art of the Second Skin”, by Nicole Clinton

The Art of the Second Skin. Nicole Clinton examines the perception of makeup and how it affects our use of the medium in an essay written for Fashion Philosophy. * The mentality surrounding makeup and the reasons behind why it is worn are extremely multifaceted. How we view makeup personally, as an individual, or collectively, as a particular group or society, is significant in how we employ the medium and in our consciousness of our decision to create a given look. While a cloud of misconceptions is known to follow it, makeup plays a lead role in style, creative expression, and self-image. We’ll be exploring whether this misunderstood medium belongs to the realm of fashion, body or art and question the relevance of its criticisms. Makeup could be viewed as an extension of fashion and thus as an external entity that we add to our natural form. If it is perceived from this angle, then yes, it is an artificial object by nature (in the same way that a dress or jacket may be) but this …

“It’s in the Jeans”, by Nicole Clinton

Nicole Clinton charts the evolution of the world’s most popular trousers and their relationship to history. * It is almost impossible to envision a wardrobe, in fact a world, without jeans, yet it is also quite shocking that they were first invented in 1873! While the denim pants are a ubiquitous symbol of modern dress, their creation by a Bavarian-born Jew, Levi Strauss, came way back in the late-nineteenth century. The opportunistic Strauss produced and sold his first pair of jeans to a Californian miner for six dollars in gold dust after the man complained of the difficulty he experienced in finding a pair of stiff, rugged pants that could withstand the rigours of digging. Fast forward over 140 years and jeans have become both a style statement and a fashion essential in the eyes of the Western world, but not without going through a series of physical and social transformations over the decades. In the 1930s, jeans were mainly seen on the big-screen as the cowboys of Hollywood western movies made the pants a …