Caffeine and nicotine, two only things that can wake me up faster than anything in the morning (well, except if my house is on fire or something like that. I need to rescue my one and only Chanel jacket). But this morning, a video of Jimmy Kimmel's prank during New York Fashion Week made my eye popping and my brain labouring faster than a speed of light.
This video, which many people found it funny, I think in the contrary. It's cringeworthy. And yet, it is actually a great material how we should contemplate our teacher and parent's proverb "Don't judge a book by its cover". You can't tell until you read it. Which here means, no matter how fashionable a person looks, you can't tell how his brain works until he speaks.
Watch the video below.
It's been a long discussion for people who don't understand fashion, people who don't live just for fabrics and needle, that fashion people are foolish and dumb. I have a thought on that, that along with Nietzsche, every time people make fun of fashion, I would just say, "“And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music.” Meaning, those people just have a different favourite genre of music, and they can't hear or enjoy what I hear and enjoy.
But it's difficult to stand up for that belief, when so-called fashion people keep failing to show that they have brains. All in their head is how to look
Other people in fashion really work hard for what they love. They went to Parsons. They went to Central Saint Martins to learn how to distinguish hundreds (if not thousands) kind of fabrics and materials and how to use it. They went to Ecole de la Chambre Syndicale to learn (and find out) that Juicy Couture is not couture at all. They spent years and years of training to hone their ability in draw and drape to create a beautiful dress. In journalism, which I think the top notch in term of complication and fatality if they fail, a prominent journalist like Tim Blanks still has to learn more and more (remember him being reproved by Jean-Paul Gaultier for failing to reference his collection?) to make non-biased/objective critisism, which means everything for a journalist. Suzy Menkes has been doing what she's doing for decades, holding journalistic values to maintain the credibility in reporting. Kennedy Fraser is Kennedy Fraser because she didn't put herself wearing same clothes in five different photographs and put it on the New Yorker.
These people, who have a bold focus in fashion, are doing fashion beyond how it mere looks; its history, the terribly tangled techniques involved, the knotty marketing strategy. They try to articulate and translate what's happening in society in clothes and words. They observe. They listen. They read. And most importantly, they think what they're about to do. Those kids in that video, whose the main idea is only pointed to how they look, how to be immortalised on Tommy Ton's page or The Sartorialist, are loosing the most important focus in fashion. They fail to enrich their brain with logic, to nurture their wisdom with humbleness. That's what happens if you think that a brand is fashion.
Why is that difficult to admit that you don't know about a specific brand? Roberto Cavalli once said in an interview after his show in Singapore, that not knowing John Galliano doesn't mean you don't know about fashion (well, if you don't know him, then you don't know one of the most brilliant designers in modern era. But you know what I mean).
So, what should we, people who admit to love fashion, do to avoid such embarrassment? Tell the truth. One must not tell lies in this savvy society. If you don't know, say it. If your jacket is not Dior vintage but Zara instead, tell those photographers who collect your outfit details. Don't pretend you're on phone when you're not (in case there's an actual incoming call and you forgot to set silent-mode). Oh,.. and read and learn more.
Or, simply STFU.
Signorfandi, Maya Angelou said, when you know better, you do better...