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Fashion Guide for Dummies


If you are here, you are probably new to fashion. So the best way to start the guide is by congratulating you on your decision to take a dip into this fascinating world. Technically, you are perhaps expecting a fashion guide that is quite boring… telling you what you need to wear, when to wear it and how you should think about it, but we have something that will give you a clear perspective on the entire subject. Most people start their journey into fashion expecting some kind of “how to dress” series of guides, but that is only a small fragment of the industry. If you are really going to understand fashion, you need to know that there are many perspectives from which you can look upon it. It’s not just fancy clothes and flashy accessories.


If you look at it like that you are not going to ever be able to understand its subtleties and why it is such a powerful titan in our world. If you are really going to understand fashion, you need to see it from every perspective and you need to understand that it offers you endless opportunities. If you see these opportunities you will get a head start and see this entire world for what it is, something that the majority of fashion enthusiasts fail to see when they first enter the business. So what do you really need to know about the industry? Well, it follows some specific rules when it comes to what you wear, why you wear it and how to properly create demand. Fashion is looks, it’s a philosophy and it’s also business. And, if you think about it, all these points of view can stretch into miniature ones that will tailor the proper industry image.  



Fashion As Looks

Girl-uses-the-tabletThis is practically the first level of fashion, the most superficial one. Most people think that if you dress well you’re a fashion expert. That’s wrong. That’s completely wrong. You could pick up some good clothes and have no idea what you are doing or why you are wearing them. It’s absurd how people can fall into this trap, but you already know why this happens: it’s easier to look, harder to think. Maybe you fell into this trap as well. Do not worry, everyone does. People come in contact with fashion from their earliest years: they see that mom and dad wearing different things when they come from work, they see that boys are usually dressed in blue and that girls are dressed in pink, and they see that girls can wear jewels and boys can’t. Since fashion is not exactly something taught in schools, unless you want to go to a fashion university, of course, people learn it socially. We just look at what others wear and try to imitate it until we find what we like. There are specific rules as to how you do these things: the way you match colors, types of clothes and the way you use jewels to highlight parts of your body - this is all “fashion as looks”. There are some neat tricks that you can learn and which we have discussed in some of our guides as to how you can match specific jewels, how you can wear bracelets with a different nail polish and, in case you know absolutely nothing about fashion, you should know that that lipstick the girl you like is using is actually meant to highlight her eyes. Why is this level of fashion important? Because of its superficiality. The reason why everyone says that looks are everything is because that is everything they can see. So we might as well wear something nice so that they can see something nice…. They do not wonder about what your clothes mean, where they come from, who started the trend or it their mixture are actually a result of your effort or not. It’s a little bit sad, yet quite normal. Society has deemed fashion this way and since we are talking about the majority of people… you can understand why looks are as important as everyone claims them to be.  



Fashion As Motivation and As a Source of Inspiration

Woman-is-on-the-motorcycle You cannot have a good fashion guide that does not explain the concept of beauty and how it was shaped through history. Emerging from the superficial level, we can all understand that fashion is a thing of beauty. Yet beauty is perceived on very different levels. Some resort to the fact that it looks good, others like to wonder about it and create their own philosophy. There are many people who cherish brands and the people who started them all. Fashion is a source of inspiration not only because you can imitate how someone dresses, but because you can learn from the people who have made a difference. Every person who has made solid impact in the industry has gone through some rough kind of experience. Some started as orphans, some as outcasts, some were criticized from their sexuality and the fact that they are different and some even had to struggle with difficult diseases before and while living their successful lives. The reason why fashion is motivational is because you can either hear or read what these people have or had to say. People worked day and night to achieve their dreams and they have had to endure critiques and abuse from people who did not embrace their ideas. These are people who know what failure looks like, who have endured it and who were not stopped by it. You can read about some of them in our Top 5 Fashion Designers Worldwide and Most Famous Fashion Designers in the World guides. Yes. In case you are wondering, there are more than enough people in the world who wear clothes from big brands only because they know their owners’ stories. This is also an effect that tends to grow in time. The more people hear about the story, the more inclined they are to purchase the goods. This is the reason why some brands have become so popular over the years. Chanel and Armani have registered extraordinary growth over the last century because everyone heard their stories.  



Fashion As a Business

Girl-admires-the-view-outsideBut perhaps you are not exactly interested in the way people think or look. Maybe you want to know how the money is made. It’s quite simple: it’s consumerism. We’ll break it down into more fragments as we proceed, but it is imperative that you know consumerism is what keeps fashion going. People want more, so they buy more. It’s an endless cycle. Nobody can stop it even if they wanted to. Why? People need clothes. Even if they do not need clothes, they still need clothes they are educated to use clothes. But there is a fine line between a good fashion education and a bad one. It’s normal for everyone to need clothes… it’s just mad for everyone to want to buy a few pieces every day. Oh yes, there are people like these everywhere. The fashion industry is extremely confident that people make decisions based on fear and greed. It is a subject that we have discussed in previous guides as well. Fear of being left behind pushes people into buying more trendy clothes. “What if I do not look like my friends anymore?” “What if I will get rejected for wearing different clothes?” You might not have experienced it (although you might have unconsciously), but people are very aware and careful about what everyone else around them is wearing. It is often a criteria for choosing friends.


So… you can pretty much understand why kids in jeans and with a ripped T-shirt do not hang out with the girls with high heels and cool purses, right? Greed is the other feeling that pushes people towards buying more. This is also a result of social education. Remember all those times when you and your friends talked about what celebrities are wearing? Yes, those are the moments in which fashion education occurs. Thoughts pop up into your head instantly: “I wish I liked like that”, “I wish I had money to dress like that guy”. Need is socially generated and fashion designers are very aware of this. This is why a “new” design appears every year or two, a design that was displayed a few years back, but it has a little extra something now, so it is called “new” again. And this is how fashion business is born. Now you should have a broad enough image to understand this industry in its interiority. A regular fashion guide will teach you how to dress. A smart one will let you know what you’re getting into and it will also let you know that you have options. It all depends on what you want now: to look at fashion from the superficial, look-only, level. Or do you want to understand its deepest secrets? Choose carefully. You might end up changing the world one day.