What Is Fashion and How Does It Affect Society?
Fashion is a mode of expression in clothing, footwear and accessories. This form of self-expression can influence social and cultural change in many ways. It may be seen as a way to show off status or individuality, or simply to keep up with current trends. It can also reflect changes in culture and the environment. It is a huge industry with a wide variety of pros and cons.
Fashion has the potential to be a tool for positive change in our society and our health. This can be demonstrated by the work of designer and educator Frances Corner OBE who has collaborated with scientists to produce fabrics that absorb and remove pollution from the air. She also has a project called ‘Herself’ which toured female prisoners, mental health units and care homes to enable people who cannot leave their homes to tell stories in the comfort of their own clothes.
This type of work is gaining increasing support and momentum. In addition, designers are increasingly using their platforms and influence to promote a political stance. This was especially evident during the 2017 fashion weeks, where designers reacted to the US Presidential election and Brexit, and also took a stand on gender equality and the refugee crisis.
However, it is important to remember that fashion is not a choice, but a social phenomenon. For something to be considered fashionable, there must be widespread dissemination and a large following. This can happen through traditional media such as magazines, TV and movies, and more recently, social media such as viral memes.