While at my dear friend RSW’s house last week, her daughter, ES, used the word ‘Fashionate!’ That one little word set off a flood of thoughts and memories that I simply had to write down and share.
First, a bit of a glossary…
Fashionate: (adjective) To be passionate about fashion and keep oneself in style.
Fashionista: (noun) A person devoted to fashion clothing, particularly unique or high fashion.
BTW: A person not to be called a Fashionista would be someone who obsessively follows trends. REAL Fashionistas and the truly Fashionate do not believe in trends.
Neither ‘Fashionate’ nor ‘Fashionista’ are, to my mind, derogatory words. Quite the opposite, in fact.
Neither of the above is to be confused with a…
Fashion Whore: (noun) A preachy know it all under a skin of designer clothing. The ‘Fashion Whore’ criticizes everything she considers ‘out of style’ or ‘tacky.’ This kind of bitchiness is, of course, in and of itself, tacky.
‘Fashion Whore’ is most definitely a derogatory phrase.
While I have often been described (not least by myself) as being on the dull rusty edge of fashion, I used to work in a business where I was in frequent contact with all three character types above. I came to love and admire the truly ‘Fashionate.’
I also discovered that you pick up an eye for these things over time.
You learn to spot the good, the bad and the ugly in fashion mighty quick. Example: Good – Heart-stopping styles; Bad – cringe-worthy fashion disasters; Ugly – stomach-wrenching runway tragedies.
There was a group of Fashionistas in law school who bemoaned the ‘student casual’ look (i.e. dressed like a young homeless person) and coined the term ‘fashion tort!’ How apropos!
Yes, I have a thing for Gucci. Sue me!
And in case you were wondering about the price bracket of the above outfits, let me just say that the little clutch purse the young lady directly above is holding… $1100, which also happens to be the price of that two pocket jacket. Oh, and that delicious long double-breasted coat up above… about $2400. The purse and bag together are well over that.
So, folks… Let’s try to look sharp out there this fall.