Postmodern Fashion

Postmodernity is the world view that comes after modernity. Its an evolution on the modern world view and is a vital step in the growth of human ideas. Postmodernists are deconstructionists and pulling apart the aesthetic and purpose of fashion is most definitely a good thing. To a point. Like all deconstruction if you keep going and do not stop, we are left with nothing. Fashion deconstructed is there for all to see in the latest trend to hit the fashion pages, the jeans with only seams. Japanese designer Thibaut has taken deconstruction to another level with the cut away denim. The practical purpose of fashion has been stripped away leaving the bare minimum needed to still make it a garment. Will anyone wear these? Absolutely yes but there appeal will definitely be limited to the interested in the very cutting edge of fashion. Us mere mortals will continue with the slightly less deconstructed ripped jeans, a trend that was also postmodern in its approach. By rescuing a pair of jeans with holes in from the bin and elevating them to fashion trend the ripped jeans poked a tongue out at the modern fashion of smart.

The collective rebellion against modern happened most distinctly in the 1960’s with the birth of the hippy or flower power movement. Fashion, and indeed much of culture had, up till then been stuck in a functional dip, along came the summer of love and changed everything. Now what we wore said something about who we are as people. Different values and an objectionable war in Vietnam coalesced into a movement which changed the world. With out the hippy era we’d still be in 1950’s suburbia, and sartorially at least, no one want to live there.

Except of course some people do. Vintage is another postmodern phenomena making its mark in the fashion world. Yesterdays fashion is todays style and as the deconstruction continues expect to see much much more individuality and jeans with no seams. Perhaps one day we will see naked model on the fashion catwalks of the world. Like I said if you deconstruct anything enough you end up with nothing

.¬† ¬†Another facet of postmodern fashion is the man skirt. Its 35 years since Jean Paul Gaultier put men in skirts and it still hasn’t caught on. Skirts are traditionally women clothes and wearing one is not an easy thing for a man to do unless he conforms to the norms and tries his best to look like a woman. As gender norms are increasingly challenged expect to see more men breaking out of there trousers and into a skirt.

Postmodern has a dislike of all things traditional. Traditions are the antithesis of deconstruction and in it’s attempt to break free of everything the postmodern ideal will trash tradition as and when it can. Its a small point but for me an important one and that is the postmodern take on the kilt. The kilt is the traditional dress of the Celtic people, the Irish and the Scots and is currently being touted as the next big thing in man skirts. This might not seem like a big deal but if you ask a Scottish man if a Kilt is a skirt you’ll soon find out that it isn’t. Hopefully politely. A kilt is a kilt and while some skirts might look like kilts there are differences. Calling things by there proper names is important to Traditional as well as Modern world views but alas not to Postmdern. Skirts are skirts. Skirts are varied beyond belief. skirts can be made out of any material and can be many different shapes. Kilts are different. Kilts are kilts and while I’m sure we can deconstruct the kilt and make one out of Paisley silk if we want to there is still a difference.

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