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14-05-2008
  16
Frozen irony.
 
pucci_mama's Avatar
 
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Fast fashion is such a sad thing, there are people who are always wanting to be ahead of the crowds.
And be seen in whichever item Grazia et al. are proclaiming as the latest 'must have'.

Beauty seems to be lacking... people just seem to want to dress ugly, clad in cheap materials.. scenario: Stars are big this season and they are everywhere! So retailers know they can print them onto nasty material and sell it..and people will buy it!

It's mind-boggling really.

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14-05-2008
  17
Power to the 99%
 
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One of my coworkers lives in a McBox, and she's now on the search for a bigger McBox with "more character." I feel it is unlikely she's going to find something with real character, which I might add does not really involve stainless steel

There is new construction with character, but it seems to be fairly rare, and usually at the high end of the price scale. Even then, it almost always smacks of newness, and has no soul yet ...

It's hard for me to understand why people just don't push it back & refuse it. People seem to be all too willing to accept a truly unattractive norm ...

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14-05-2008
  18
a hymn to darkness
 
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This has more to do with values & perception...
Where one chooses to buy their clothing says
very little about their sense of aesthetics, imo...
I don't shop in high-end boutiques,
but I do think my sense and appreciation
of beauty & aesthetics is highly developed..
There are many ppl. buying clothing of the highest quality..
However, their overall understanding of aesthetics, in every sense,
is severally skewed as they think acquisition = understanding..

In the states, the idea of beauty is not offered...
one must pursue such inclinations & interests on their own...
In many American public schools, art & music classes are optional..
It is not seen as a pivotal factor in one's general education, sadly..
But I think if aesthetics were seen as more than
a pursuit drenched in superficiality and all things ostentatious,
the States would be much more pleasant..

Hope that makes sense...

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Last edited by wheneveriwakeup; 14-05-2008 at 04:53 PM.
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14-05-2008
  19
Power to the 99%
 
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^ You're absolutely right about this not being a price point issue ... I have been known to browse in Target, which does many things right aesthetically.

In some ways the lack of history in the US is to our advantage ... but in this way I think it's really not. If you have Stonehenge or Roman aquaducts nearby, I have to believe that characterless box-like structures must automatically look less appealing. And my area of the country has less "history" than some other regions. Of course native Americans lived here for millennia, but they left no mark (what a concept) ... at least very few that are visible now. I think my area of the country is also dominated by new souls, which I think explains a lot ... they delight in Walmart and all it represents, which just befuddles me ...

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14-05-2008
  20
the crying of humanity
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fashionista-ta View Post
In some ways the lack of history in the US is to our advantage ...
What do you mean by "lack of history"? Last I checked there's plenty of American history, unless you were referring to a certain type.

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14-05-2008
  21
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Marxists have been making this argument since Engels...

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14-05-2008
  22
a hymn to darkness
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seanutbutter View Post
What do you mean by "lack of history"? Last I checked there's plenty of American history, unless you were referring to a certain type.
'History' in a sense of aesthetics...
Save a few select, mostly metropolitan cities,
there aren't many grand, divine structures throughout the Americas..
There are plenty of natural wonders, however...
American history, imo, is rich in events and happenings...
Not necessarily in structures, for the most part...

I think to limit this topic to simply a matter of dressing
is slightly demoralizing...
To say someone's perception of beauty is 'out-of-order'
simply because they aren't on the cutting edge of fashion
and/or spending tons of money to show their supreme understanding of
'quality' says so much about the central motives of today's society...
Status.

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14-05-2008
  23
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The United States and it's lack of "history" actually brings up an interesting point. The US Constitution was basically ratified at the same time Adam Smith's "Wealth of Nations" came out, so consumerism is deeply entrenched in the US more prominently than any other nation. If you look at the US's significant contribution to aesthetics, spearheaded by the likes of Andy Warhol, Ansel Adams, Richard Avedon, Frederick Law Olmstead and etc, these contributions have all been the result of being influenced by consumerism. Pop Art wouldn't exist without pop culture, Avedon and Adams took a consumerist technology and proved it could be used as art, and Olmstead, who completely changed City infrastructure with his parks never would've had to built them if it weren't for cities. It's very easy to make the claim consumerism destroys aesthetics, because in theory it makes sense, but I think it's much more fair to claim that fast consumerism is simply changing aesthetics.

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15-05-2008
  24
Frozen irony.
 
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Actually 'quality' as you put it has nothing at all with status to do.. is about choosing the best fabrics of what you can afford..nothing to do with status as it is not so obvious to the eye.
It's silent...

There is a shocking amount of high priced items these days that are made of polyester etc. Just with a logo on.. so money/status does not equal an understanding of quality, quality in my opinion has to do with beauty.
I love the feel of nice fabrics.. is not a luxury is a necessity.

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15-05-2008
  25
a hymn to darkness
 
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^ Exactly. To many high prices denote quality.
And in the same sense, to many beauty = expensive...
Which is incredibly false, obviously...

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15-05-2008
  26
Frozen irony.
 
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Indeed, beauty can be found almost anywhere at almost any price points.

All it takes is a discerning eye.


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15-05-2008
  27
Power to the 99%
 
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To me the relationship of quality & aesthetics is this ... I put a lot of work into finding beautiful things, and once I do, I want that investment of time to pay off, which requires quality.

What I meant about history is, in many places in the world (and mine is not one of them) you can look around you and see the enduring legacy of the beautiful things humans have made. Many of them are mysteries ... we don't fully understand the purpose & reasoning behind Stonehenge; we don't know how the pyramids were built. It's a wonderful caution against arrogance.

Where I live, the oldest structures I'm likely to see are Victorian. Many places, you can't move without seeing beautiful things that are centuries old ... the perspective they bring is inescapable. Here, there is no perspective like that.

Two hundred years is very little in comparison.

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15-05-2008
  28
a hymn to darkness
 
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I agree, Fashionista-ta.
It is rather disheartening...
Esp. with all the strife in America these days...
The simple, organic nature in which beauty exists is so precious, rly..
If only it were present in abundance...

The price/quality debate is so very touchy...
Of course, there are instances when price and quality go hand and hand...
Yohji Yamamoto comes to mind...
His pieces may be astronomically priced, but the perceived quality is even higher
than the actual price of the garments...
so it is justified...

I have no problem with spending a small fortune on one's wardrobe...
However, when a person implies that their understanding of beauty, aesthetics -
fashion even - excels that of another who may be unable to acquire such items,
that person is actually stripping away the essence of a well-made and/or well designed garment..
the beauty of it... why make it so petty? So technical?

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15-05-2008
  29
Power to the 99%
 
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^ Of course there's the whole wabi-sabi aesthetic too, which certainly doesn't require $$$ to either acquire or appreciate (though you certainly can spend big bucks on it) ... there are so many kinds of beauty. Many I love personally, and many others I can appreciate. It's only a descent into ugliness and mediocrity that I find so depressing ...

The reality is that it's more challenging to create beauty with less money, but it's well within reach. And as you say, sometimes money can be an impediment. There's plenty of expensive mediocrity too :p And plenty of absolute perfection that can be bought with a $20 bill. Like a box of fleur de sel signed by the person who raked it, or fabulous dark chocolate with hazelnuts

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15-05-2008
  30
rising star
 
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I did a 10 minute speech on this...I have thought about it too much
And It's not only America. This is happening all over the world!

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