Fashion and music movers are humming the same song
by: Victor Basa (The Philippine Star) Updated October 21, 2011 12:00 AM
MANILA, Philippines - It’s an affair that’s lasted through the ages. The current relationship of fashion and music is stronger than ever, just like those real life on-screen love teams but without the tabloids or shocking news reports about breakups and third parties. It’s an interdependent relationship, and it is mutual admiration at its most unmistakable. Together, they can create imagery that shapes movements and kickstarts trends that can transcend into classics. Take, for instance, the decade-long resurgence of slim-cut suits, nobody else could have started that except for Hedi Slimane. (There are a few arguments on whether Helmut Lang came first.) But it was Karl Lagerfeld who dubbed Slimane’s work as “pure genius” and even lost a substantial amount of weight just to wear his stuff. It’s a prime example of how trends can transcend and eventually find their way into one’s wardrobe. His exit from Dior Homme shocked many. He then decided to focus on photography — coincidentally his images mostly feature musicians, exploring aspects of fleeting youth and festival outtakes.
We all know how closely intertwined, hand-in-hand, symbiotic, and downright chummy fashion and music are. You cannot deny the facts (complete with pictures) of those seated (or standing, i.e: Balenciaga S/S 2012 show) at the major shows’ front rows of the various Fashion Weeks. In Paris, we have Kylie Minogue at Yves Saint Laurent, and Ciara at Givenchy (which has the starriest rows of the week, Jared Leto included). In London, you have Peaches Geldof sitting front row at Sass & Bide, and of course we have Beyoncé present at the House of Dereon (she’s the company’s figurehead). The list goes on.
We can even go from runway to print with the unending number of musicians who are, or have been, on the covers of the more famous fashion magazines. Just this month we have Lady Gaga baring all for Harper’s Bazaar, Adele on the cover of British Vogue (followed by Rihanna in November). It seems every time I see a monthly or quarterly with a musician on it, I imagine that the people behind it are humming the same song “entice the buyer, connect with their sensibilities and be current” then they offer buzz-worthy band remixes of said tunes. Of course I’m only guessing, who knows what those clever magazine people have up their sleeves?
Music itself has such a strong influence when it comes to people making personal choices on what brand/s to buy. Brands closely associate themselves with genres and various artists (if even just for an isolated campaign) hoping to inherit or increase their credibility among their potential and existing clientele (and perhaps a few or many aspirational hopefuls).
One noteworthy personality who has been commissioned before by French luxury powerhouse Louis Vuitton isn’t too keen on just sitting by and letting all the action happen without him. Getting up off of his front row seat, Kanye West recently launched his women’s wear collection dubbed “Dw by Kanye West” (Dw stands for Donda West, his late mother) I can only imagine and wait in anticipation now that a much-sought menswear line is well under way. In spite of all of his detractors, you cannot deny the impact he has made in hip-hop’s choice of staples. (T-shirt exodus, and venturing into sometimes dangerously dandy territory.)
Lady Gaga sees viral marketing opportunity very clearly and collaborates with top designers and artists alike to fulfill certain specific visions she has that are perfectly ripe for social media and the mainstream press. Designer Alexander McQueen and English artist Damien Hirst (infamous for his animals, mostly huge, preserved in formaldehyde) are just a couple of names on her illustrious list of successful fraternization. I’m sure most people are at least very familiar with the imagery that Gaga co-creates even if they aren’t so well-versed with the exact designers or artists. Meanwhile nobody can deny Justin Bieber’s influence on how tweens and some young adults dress. He singlehandedly brought throngs of high-top Supra-wearing kids, complete with colored hoodies and flat-billed, fitted baseball caps. I can still remember my nephew’s requests for “limited-edition dunks” when I asked him if he wanted to check out a toy store. This alone shows the impact music has on people’s choice of clothes. Kids want to look like their idols. This fact hardly ever changes. Fast-forward to years from high school and it’s still the same, music is still as particular to an individual as it’s ever been.
I’m usually in raw denim, an oxford shirt rolled up at the sleeves and various ensembles that wouldn’t disturb the sensibilities of the local maitre d’. Still, I often find myself getting bored of wearing a uniform day-in day-you get the idea. So I decided to mix it up a little bit with a fabric I’ve never really worn (corduroy) Just a few pieces that can easily blend into your current wardrobe and retain your personal style.
So simple, and elementary. The collared shirt and jacket combo can be traced back to the 17th century or even earlier! (okay maybe just the shirt collar) I’m no expert in history. The point is, it has survived this long with very little change so you can rest assured that what you’re wearing has some sort of history and pedigree.
here’s a quote from German writer and poet Goethe that Karl Lagerfeld himself maintains as his personal mantra for Chanel: “Make a better future by developing elements from the past.”
Alright, so cords and a jacket. Found below is how to wear both effortlessly without looking inappropriately overdressed. I personally don’t think men are supposed to look like peacocks anyway.
corduroy pants (cut like jeans, slim and very flattering) with a check shirt and dark gray single breasted jacket, with tassel loafers add a little bit more to this otherwise basic (yet effective) combo
dark gray patterned slacks (like straight cut jeans) and corduroy trim polo with a navy blazer. oh, and a plaid neckerchief. something slightly different from the ubiquitous pocketsquare sighted around recently. chukka boots lend some grown up charm to this outfit.
relaxed and confident, a corduroy jacket plus a check shirt matched with light pinstripe walking shorts and plum suede loafers is the most casual look among the three. so i decided to pair it with a chrono watch to dress it up a little bit.
watches need not be expensive. choose something personal and distinctively yours, like I choose this calculator watch that my dad used to have in silver.
and this no fuss, no winding watch from swatch that couldn’t look shabby even if it tried.
*all clothes from Penshoppe, shoes from various brands.