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Love Island Champions a Sustainable Future

It’s June, which means that most of us have the familiar jingle of the Love Island theme tune playing
on a loop in our heads. Toned bodies, exclamations of ‘got a text!’ and awkward firepit convos
abound! But this year, something is different. Instead of the standard violently neon, probably highly
flammable clothes made in factories where workers make £3.50 per hour, this year’s islanders are
donning second-hand fits thanks to Ebay. Continue reading Love Island Champions a Sustainable Future

A Dark Day Indeed: ‘Black Friday’ and Mass Consumerism

Black Friday hasn’t always been about big sales in the run-up to Christmas. Some of the earliest uses of the term ‘Black Friday’ were in reference to the US gold market crash of 1869 and stock market crash of 1929. In the 1950s, police in Philadelphia used the term ‘Black Friday’ to refer to the day after Thanksgiving and the chaos that ensued when huge … Continue reading A Dark Day Indeed: ‘Black Friday’ and Mass Consumerism

2021 is the New 90s: Recycling Fashion Trends

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, it has become harder for new and exciting fashion trends to emerge on the scene. Many designers and creators have noted how difficult it has been to create content when homebound. However, there is one particular decade that we have turned to during this time of increased isolation: the 90s. But what is the reasoning behind the resurgence of iconic fashion trends from the 90s? Is it because there has been nothing else to do except rummage through our parents’ wardrobes? Or has binge-watch classic TV shows and films brought about this sudden desire to hark back to the decade that gave us so many awe-inspiring fashion movements? Images of icons, such as Jennifer Aniston, Naomi Campbell and Winona Ryder are resurfacing on the internet and within the fashion world, inspiring those who are keen to embody the 90s look. Continue reading 2021 is the New 90s: Recycling Fashion Trends

When Does Cultural Appreciation Become Cultural Appropriation When it Comes to Marketing?

Cultural appropriation seems to be a phrase that’s coming up more and more frequently on social media, particularly in conversations surrounding the fashion industry. Many popular fashion companies such as Victoria’s Secret, Savage X Fenty, Gucci, and Prada have been accused of cultural appropriation in designs and marketing. The Oxford English Dictionary defines it as “the unacknowledged or inappropriate adoption of the practices, customs, or aesthetics of one social or ethnic group by members of another (typically dominant) community or society.” A deeper understanding of cultural appropriation refers to when people in the dominant culture in society take elements from a culture that has previously been systematically oppressed. This means that in 2012 when Karlie Kloss walked down the Victoria’s Secret Runway wearing underwear paired with a Native American headdress, suede fringe, and turquoise jewellery the Navajo people were deeply offended as the outfit disrespected and trivialised their culture. When designers take inspiration from other people’s cultures, it lets them show a love for the cultural aesthetic. The caveat of that is that often, in doing so, these designers remain prejudiced against its people. Continue reading When Does Cultural Appreciation Become Cultural Appropriation When it Comes to Marketing?

Interview: Kia from Nudes By Kia

As part of RAZZ’s SHAG Week, Caitlin Barr had the privilege of interviewing creator Kia, the founder of the queer owned UK business Nudes By Kia, which turns “people’s own nudes into wearable art”. Caitlin and Kia spoke about the genesis of their business, and why they think that reclaiming and celebrating your body is so important. Their discussion follows: Continue reading Interview: Kia from Nudes By Kia

An Elegy for Topshop

The pandemic has claimed its latest victim. First it was Debenhams and now it’s ‘Big Topshop’. The Oxford Street Aladdin’s cave, filled with bubble tea, crop tops in twelve different colors and pulsating tunes is no more. London has lost a landmark, a teenage haven and the ‘one-stop shop’ of fashion. With news of the closure of Topshop’s flagship store coming just a month after the Arcadia group announced it was going into administration, the decline of this fashion house is on very palpable horizons. Topshop is, I do not dispute, a contributor to fast fashion (see here for tips on all important sustainable shopping), but it is also a brand with enormous cultural and personal significance; it exists for many millennial’s and Gen Z’s as the uniform of their teens. Continue reading An Elegy for Topshop

Challenging Fashion Boundaries and Showcasing Minority Creators

The December issue of Vogue US saw Harry Styles grace its cover, making him the first solo male to front the magazine in Vogue’s 128-year history. Whilst it may not be surprising that Styles was chosen for the cover of Vogue magazine considering the success that 2020 has had in store for him, the shoot instantly became a defining moment in fashion history. The cover photo shows Styles wearing a classic double-breasted black Gucci jacket over a custom-made baby blue, lace Gucci dress (designed by Gucci’s Creative Director and Styles’ close friend, Alessandro Michele). Naturally, an image of a man wearing a dress on the cover of the world’s most notorious fashion magazine drew headlines and ruffled a few feathers. The most famous quote that this image bore was Candace Owens’ tweet “bring back manly men.” This controversial quote lead to an onslaught of praise in support of Styles, as well as some right-wing commentators supporting Owens. Whilst it is evident that 2020 has proven that masculinity is no more than a concept formed by societal norms, it is also worth considering if Styles deserves the praise that he has been given. Continue reading Challenging Fashion Boundaries and Showcasing Minority Creators

Reviews in Retrospect: Wales Bonner Spring 2021 Collection

British fashion designer, Grace Wales Bonner’s Spring 2021 Menswear collection is a beautifully retro, jewel-toned tribute to her Jamaican heritage. The Central Saint Martin’s graduate regularly explores black culture through her designs, and her most recent collection takes inspiration from early-1980s Jamaica, and dancehall and reggae culture. Wanting to put her own spin on this, she looks to her upbringing in London and adds a British twist to her Jamaican roots. Continue reading Reviews in Retrospect: Wales Bonner Spring 2021 Collection