Thursday, December 6, 2007

Sometimes I wonder, what would happen one fine day, when a I wear a dress and go to a party to realise a fashion follower's worst nightmare – which would be worse than looking fat, more humiliating than wearing the same dress as another party guest -- it's the dread of looking anachronistic and totally out of sync with fashion।

Fashion trends, if you have noticed are referred to as fads, are disreputably fickle। The fashion industry is always on the hunt for what's new, what's hot. More than style and substance its what's new that seems to win. For every new, must-have handbag/sandals, there's another that gets tossed aside like, well, last year's trend॥and gets relegated to the attic.

The Fashion Cycle

  1. First, there's the emerging trend of products that are going to strike it big.You know this as when you see that great hat/dress/shoe on the runway, red carpet or music video. It's hitting you in the eye for attention and you make no bones about your natural pleasure towards the product.
  2. Next, comes what is called the emulation phase, where everyone wants a piece of the trend. You'll see it in fashion magazines, newspapers, internet and TV during this phase. This is basically a wave which every one wants to be a part of, to feel good. If the world is talking about Paris Hilton, then its just Hilton on page 3, thank god the stop press exists…. to jump into the wave at the right time.
  3. Finally, the trend becomes saturated in the market, usually at very low prices. With trendy items like a must-have designer handbag, the item becomes widely available as a knock-off. But you will be surprised to know that sales sometime surge during this phase depending upon the country. For instance, Harry Porter mania came a year late to the subcontinent than it did in the other parts of the world.
Most of us will buy it somewhere between phases two and three। Only celebrities and fashion industry types have access to fashion fresh off the runway that hasn't appeared in stores yet, like in the first phase of a fashion trend. It takes some one with an innate sense of fashion consciousness to spot the emerging trend and boldy make a statement about it, which then makes news to come down to stage 2.

At the second phase a look is often available in high-priced designer collections. Only in the third phase, when a look makes it to the mass market, does it become affordable for most consumers.
Twenty or 30 years ago it might have taken a few years to make it from red carpet to mass market, but today's manufacturers have put the fashion cycle into hyperspeed। Sometimes a hot trend makes it into lower priced retail outlets in as little as a few months and as the argument starts, 20 or 30 years back, we relied on magazines to get us the trends, then the television media came along with fashion channels and changed the scenario. But an even bigger media wave is splashing a click away from where you are in the form of social media trends. The biggest advantage in such a networked web 2.0 world is for us to eaves drop on conversations that happen through out the web on fashion.

One such network were high quality fashion discussions happens is Fashion Networks, a global portal having diverse influential people come and pour out their views on the fashion industry. Stay hooked on to the Fashion Networks Blog to know more about this new business networking portal and for trends in the fashion place.

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