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Buy less, choose well: Merging matters

Posted in Style
by Dido Mani on 29 November, 2015

The modern interpretation of retro silhouettes.

Paisley print top, Adornment vintage / Frame photo by Dido Mani / Photo in frame by Emma Summerton / Leather clutch, De Gris / Still photo by Dido Mani / Gold plated earring with diamond, Baumgarten di Marco / Silk shirt, Stella McCartney / Tartan skirt, Vivienne Westwood / Suede ankleboot, Maiyet / Leather belt, Filippa K

These days’ fashion headlines are all about the modern interpretation of retro silhouettes and nostalgic prints, in which vintage (look-a-like) treasures are key and classic pieces get a fresh reboot. Although popular consensus tends to view nostalgia as a regressive force that stops us from moving forward, nostalgia makes us feel optimistic about the future by drawing on past feel-good moments; at major transitions you reflect on a previous stage.

The big difference with this contemporary time travel is that right now we simultaneously wander in every direction of the world. Lacquered gold and Asian animal prints move us into oriental spheres, while tartans and William Morris-like floral patterns recall European heritage. At the same time the 70’s flares and print-on-print remind us of the great West African photographers Malick Sidibé and Seydou Keita, who photographed their boldly dressed subjects in front of patterned backgrounds.

Not a culture clash, but a global neo nostalgic merge that goes beyond the differences between old and new, native and foreign, traditional and modern, us and them.


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