All About Fashion

About the term ‘fashion’

Globally followed by people of all backgrounds and statures, fashion is something that is a popular practice of style, especially related to clothing, make up, footwear, body, accessories or furniture. It’s an often habitual and distinctive style trend defining a way in which a person dresses. The term ‘fashion’ is also used to refer to the newest creations and the prevailing behavioral styles of various textile designers.

Owing to the constant linking of the more technical term ‘costume’ with the term ‘fashion’, people have relegated the word ‘costume’ for referring to special senses like masquerade wear or fancy dress, while fashion is mostly used to refer to clothing, as well as the study of it. The different fashion aspects can be both masculine as well as feminine.

About fashion industry

Fashion industry was primarily created as an offspring of the modern age. Before the advent of mid-19th century, majority of clothing worn by people used to be custom made. People would wear clothes that were hand made for them, either by dressmakers and tailors or by someone from their family.

Around the start of the 20th century, owing to the rise of latest technologies like sewing machines and the revolution of global capitalism, clothes started getting produced in factories world-over and found their way into retail outlets like departmental stores. Soon, clothing factories sprung up in every corner of the world and something that used to be custom made for every individual, started getting mass-produced in standard sizes.

Although the origins of fashion industry lies in America and Europe, it has become a truly globalized and international industry as of today. So much so that clothes are designed/conceptualized in one country, produced in another, and are then sold world-over. To give you an example, it is normal for an American fashion label to source its fabric from China, have the clothes produced in Bangladesh, add finishing touches to the manufactured clothes in Italy, and then have them shipped to their warehouse situated in United States; all of it for the end-distribution of the finished apparels to the retail outlets world over!

If we talk specifically in the context of United States, and for that matter even Europe, fashion industry has long served as one of the biggest employers in these countries, and continues to maintain that position even in the present times. The clothing and fashion industry also accounts for a major share in the overall world economic output. The industry can be classified into four different levels:
- Raw material production - Of textiles, fibers, fur, leather etc.
- Production of final fashion goods – By contractors, manufacturers, designers etc.
- Retail sales outlets – Both online and offline
- Promotional and advertising activities