What is Fashion?

Fashion is a mode or style of expression, especially in clothing, characterized by distinctiveness and changeability. It can also refer to prevailing customs or manners of speech and behavior, as well as cultural attitudes and values. The term is often used to indicate the popular culture of a given time or place. SYNONYMS: mode, fad, rage, trend, style, vogue

The beginning in Europe of continuous and accelerating change in clothing styles is generally considered to be the middle of the 14th century. The fashion for shortened and tightened garments for men, such as the breeches and cloaks, can be traced to the same period. A more general trend toward simpler and less ornamented clothes was ushered in with the rise of Christianity, which discouraged ostentatious displays of wealth.

Clothing changes as a result of many factors, including significant events in history and social or economic movements. Fashions are usually attributed to particular designers or to groups of designers with a shared aesthetic. Fashions can also be influenced by current events and may have political or moral implications.

The emergence of the fashion industry has caused changes in fashion trends. Designers design and produce new styles of clothing, and their designs are often marketed through magazines and other media outlets. While some people think that shifts in fashion are a negative aspect of capitalism, others see them as an opportunity to express creativity or to try out different looks. Still others criticize the speed at which fashions change, asserting that rapid changes in taste imply wastefulness or encourage materialism.