My brother went to Paris, France a while back and I asked him if the people who live there really dress in the high priced fashion I often drool over. His answer was a resounding yes, they do, every day. Our conversation turned a philosophical tone comparing Western culture with European attitudes.
I have friends who have witnessed in Rome the centuries old stoned streets and skinny winding walk ways, where horses and bicycles fear to tread; only to be out done by the more fashion famous Roman women wearing super high heels walking those narrow and bumpy streets as if barefoot on the beaches of the Amalfi coast. In the middle east, Israel, a 63 yrs young, tiny country that offers mountains in the sands of time, metropolitan cities and beaches on lakes as large as small oceans also holds a staunch commitment to being sexy, current and fashion minded. The far East/ Orient would never be so insulting as to ignore the hard word of fashion houses and impressive designers.
America on the other hand is about comfort. Even when wearing the IBM blue suit, white shirt, blue speckled tie, Americans demand the fabrics and cuts be roomy. Gone are the majority who wore ascot wrap ties with skinny cut flat front trousers. Even the blue bloods who made Ralph Lauren a household name demand soft and durable off the rack, ready to wear.
Shoes come in all shapes and styles from around the globe but flats are the top sellers. Most American born and raised men look for the least expensive clothing they can legally obtain; often times wearing t- shirts for over 15 years. (Holes just mean its now a summer wear item.) Women also seek bargains and keep comfy shoes close at hand when footwear that should come with an insurance policy due to price and heel height are tolerated for a fancy night out.
It isnt that the European doesn’t want to be comfy, its a different definition of comfort all together. Just as Americans drive to the corner market is a mere fact of habit; Non Americans think of looking their best just because they can. Colombian women somehow know the secret to looking stammeringly sexy in any season, Mexican women will dress like run way models to visit the grocery store. Americans priorities are reflected in wearing athletic ready to wear as daytime casual, paying obnoxious sums for non custom (sneakers) tennies and carry a $600 handbag that will only be worn for a season or two.
I will take up the whispers of you Euro minded that the size of Americans is also to blame for the poor quality and commitment to fashion; to this I say no! THERE IS NO EXCUSE. Price may affect where you shop, but good sense of color, fit and some personal flair can be accomplished at any budget level.
Men and Women from other cultures dress to accentuate their assess and genetic gifts. In conservative America, being attractive is dangerous. Ultra conservative America reveres a crew neck twin set over bold floral patterns as being a respectful style. How a person dresses can not reflect their ability to perform a task or do a job but their clothing choices and style is often the first reason someone doesn’t get
Be you American or Euro minded in your fashion choices Fashion week coverage reminds us the variety of styles and how different cultures embrace the new and rekindles flames of Fashion. GO SHOPPING! Be part of it; Admire and embrace the artful display of fabric, fit and fun.