The World of Fashion Critics - Page 7 - the Fashion Spot
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blueorchid's Avatar
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I don't have much to add to this, but I honestly find the word of fashion critics to be so fascinating. They seem to have such a different place in the fashion world than literature, theatre, art, or film critics do in their spheres, but then I guess those areas are more accessible to the "general public" than the fashion world often is... hmm...

Last edited by blueorchid; 08-10-2012 at 11:50 PM.
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As One PR exec told me recently, the designers he works with are more interested to heard what the anonymous commenters on have to say about their collections than the mighty critics.

Source: Dirk's Tour, Magazine Spring 2013

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Join Date: Aug 2013
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TOM FORD: Do you think the press is getting meaner? I think some journalists and bloggers want their articles to be clever, and the way into that is by writing nasty things. I think our culture likes to be mean. I don't just find this in fashion—I find it in the news. More and more, it is about ripping people apart.

NICOLAS GHESQUIÈRE: Strangely, meanness pays more than offering constructive and interesting commentary. Every season I think, “This is the last season. I'm not gonna read tomorrow morning. Forget it.”


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clever ain't wise
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I'm sorry, I don't think I've ever read hard fashion criticism, except at tfs or other websites where independent people write. Everybody else is just afraid of the consequences. Well, I guess Cathy Horyn does say her piece about Slimane, but that's about it.

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^^ I certainly hope Tom's concern is for other designers ... I don't think I've ever seen anything but fawning in the press for Tom and his Botoxed little forehead. (I'm not being mean, if you're reading this, Tom ... just descriptive.)

There's a need for more individuality today, and my job is to cater to women, not dictate to them.
--Alber Elbaz
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this world just got a little smaller...

Goodbye to Cathy Horyn...
the NY Times willl not be the same without you and we will definitely miss your insights here at tFS!
wishing you well...

"It is not money that makes you well dressed: it is understanding."

Last edited by softgrey; 01-02-2014 at 10:09 AM.
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The Sorrier State of Fashion Criticism


LONDON, United Kingdom — On Friday, the collective hearts of fashion fans around the world sank on hearing the surprise news that Cathy Horyn, one of our last true fashion critics, was leaving her post at The New York Times for personal reasons.

Indeed, with the start of a new cycle of womenswear shows only days away, for many of us, it is almost unfathomable to imagine fashion week without seeing it through Cathy’s sharp and honest eyes. Scores of comments and reactions from the BoF community around the world underlined just how unique — and respected — her voice is.

On the BoF Facebook page, Paulo Guimarães of Lisbon, Portugal wrote: “The moments I looked forward to the most during fashion week were reading Cathy Horyn’s take on the proceedings… huge, huge, *huge* loss.”

Eddie Frantz of Australia, one of the original commenters on Ms Horyn’s much-loved New York Times blog, “On The Runway,” posted a comment on BoF, writing: “It is an understatement on my part to say that she will surely be missed. She was one of the few pure, unadulterated voices of fashion criticism.” Another regular commenter, agreed: “I will now have to hang up my NYT blog handle La Genevoise!”

“She added balance and truth to her reviews,” added Michelle Fix from New York. “Rarely do you see anything critical of a collection in WWD or on The reviews are always filled with accolades — deserved or not.”

In a memo to the New York Times newsroom announcing Horyn’s departure, executive editor Jill Abramson and styles editor Stuart Emmrich called her “the pre-eminent fashion critic of her generation… who has set an almost impossible standard for those who may follow.”

But the question on my mind is this: Is there anyone who can actually follow someone like Cathy? Have we, the fashion industry, nurtured and nourished truly independent, informed voices who say what they really think? I think not. Too much fashion writing is fluffy drivel concerned with front-row attendees and the “hottest new trends.” And too often, it describes the clothes in only an elementary, superficial way that lacks an understanding of how garments are designed and constructed, and how they fit into a wider cultural and economic context.

What’s more, too many of the honest comments that experienced show-goers make to each other on the way out of a show never make it into print. Too many journalists have told me that their opinions are neutered by the powers that be for fear of pissing off advertisers or jeopardising relationships.

And, while Suzy Menkes continues to cover the shows with seemingly indefatigable energy, Robin Givhan pens honest pieces for New York magazine’s “The Cut,” and Tim Blanks stays up late at night for weeks on end to pen his beautifully crafted reviews for the, I’m hard-pressed to think of who the next generation of critics to write with an equally informed and honest voice will be.

After all, the entire fashion industry benefits from honest, informed criticism, not least the designers themselves, who need real feedback to evolve and progress their work.

I wish Cathy the very best in this next chapter of her life, and lament the now sorrier state of fashion criticism.

"I don't bother you - don't bother me"
Yohji Yamamoto
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softgrey's Avatar
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so depressing because we will begin to have fewer and fewer 'journalists'- people who are knowledgeable and educated and can actually write...

and more and more 'bloggers'- random youngsters who can only express their own personal taste and can't even do that with any sort of eloquence...
but who have no understanding of how to put things into historical perspective or relate them to the current market...

it's a good time to quit, imo...
a good time indeed...

"It is not money that makes you well dressed: it is understanding."

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