Apologies for my long absence, but I have been having some difficulties with my blog lately, and hence I'm afraid I will just have text in this post, considering that my photos refuse to jump over from my files onto the blog page. They are being extremely naughty, and will be dealt with severly (sooner or later!)
So, boys and girls, I will tell you a little story instead. Seeing as this is a kind of fashion-y blog, it is a fashion "horror story" (of sorts.)
Without further adieu, and/or excuses, I present to you:
IT SEEMED LIKE THE END OF THE WORLD AT THE TIME
There had been a complete universal disaster. No one knew how it happened, but overnight, denim evaporated. No trace of to be found anywhere. Every item of denim clothing gone. No jeans! Whole wardrobes were decimated. People called in to work sick because they had nothing to wear. And they genuinely were sick. Sick at heart that their denim crutch had been cruelly kicked out from under them with no warning. Many were left with only their underwear.
What would be the next new thing? Woollen trousers? Linen? Jodpurs? Lycra bicycle shorts? What?! People would have to find a new crutch—and fast!
At least the old folks, who were wearing denim in a deluded attempt to look hip and cool had some things in their wardrobes to fall back on.
Everyone held their breath that fleece and jogging pants wouldn’t be the next to go, but it looked ominous, as fewer and fewer things that could be classified as “comfy” were available. People began to stockpile leggings and jogging pants and hoodies. It was no use, of course.
One fateful morning, people woke up to another disaster. Their fleecy, comfy, baggy pants had followed the same fate as denim and disappeared overnight.
This WAS serious! What would be next? Surely to goodness, people couldn’t be expected to go back in time and wear the type of things available in “the olden days.” In other words, about the time of the wars: WW I and WW II. Dresses! Tweeds! What the heck was coming next? A return to wearing hats?
Naturally, this opened up a HUGE gap in the market. Vintage and retro were longer just a fashion option or statement. It was practically the only game in town until manufacturers could come up with some miracle fibre that they hoped to God wouldn’t also evaporate into nothingness whenever it took the notion to do so.
Suddenly, there was hardly enough vintage to go around and correspondingly, it became very expensive. Antique dealers and those who were by nature hoarders of old clothes were rubbing their hands in glee. People were paying silly prices for old clothes practically in any condition. People wished they hadn’t de-cluttered. Those lucky enough to have warehouses of clothes from house clearances -- stock that they thought they would never get rid of-- began to see these old clothes as their retirement fund or a brilliantly performing stock portfolio.
Because of the cost, people began to purchase fewer clothes. Gone were the days of “wear it once or twice and toss it out.” People actually learned to mend! It was a revelation to the younger generation, and took to signing up for classes in how to do it. It was “make do and mend” time again, only this time it was more than a slogan.
Eventually, new miracle fibres were invented, but surprisingly, people were not as keen to embrace them as what had been predicted. People seemed to have discovered individualism and were reluctant to get back into a universal form of dress. Maybe they feared that these new materials would also go the way of denim and they’d find themselves with the equivalent of the Emperor’s New Clothes, as they had when denim died.
For whatever reason, people began to wear their clothes with pride. They walked taller and didn’t slouch along like robots in an invisible chain gang.
Finally a fibre very similar to denim was heralded as the New Denim, but no one wanted to go near it: it was too stiff, too rough, and too much like wearing cardboard. It had no association with being young and cool anymore. Even people with long memories, who once wore only denim, could not be coaxed back. It was a complete flop and soon the manufacturers saw it as a financial dead donkey and stopped making it. What supplies they had, they pulped into roof insulation for homes.
More and more people fell in love with natural fibres, form fitting tailoring, and the whole notion of being well dressed. It became not only desirable, but normal to dress in that way. It seemed the Cult of Casual had lost its stranglehold on the nation’s psyche.