Fashion is a generic term for any set of ideas, practices, forms, or fashions developed for a particular time and era and in a particular context. The word also means a style defined by the fashion industry at what is considered to be current fashion. While some use the word fashion to describe the collection of clothes worn in particular times and seasons (think spring), others use the word to describe a style of dressing developed and worn by an individual over a period of time. To better understand what fashion is, it is helpful to compare fashion to music, with music defining certain characteristics and styles over time, such as soul, rock, hip-hop, punk, etc.
One of the most common styles in the high fashion world today is called haute couture. Haute couture, which is popular among the young professionals in the fashion world, is characterized by a unique mix of high fashion and tradition. A couture gown may have been originally worn by a French nobleman, but today, the design can reflect a person’s individuality and her/his preferences. Because the primary focus of this style is to create a timeless look, many modern designers have developed new and interesting variations of classic haute couture dresses.
Another branch of high fashion is street fashion. Unlike haute couture, street fashion generally portrays youth or novelty. The most recognizable elements of this style are brightly colored clothing with simple, cool accessories. Often, clothing is sported outside in weather conditions. Popular brands include Reebok, Adidas, and Prada. Although these brands have developed various lines of casual and dressy street clothing, many of their collections incorporate the latest trends in designer apparel.
Another trend in designer wear is to create wearable art. This style of fashion generally speaks to its audience by showing off its ‘designer’ status. Some of the most popular wearable art styles include t-shirts, sweaters, beanies, hats, bags, and shoes. These garments are often made from vintage, thrift, or secondhand clothing sources. Art fashion is seen by some fashion enthusiasts as an expression of artists’ individuality and freedom.
Celebrity fashion shows are also an important feature of the fashion industry. Fashion gurus travel from city to city, holding fashion weeks where the finest designers in the world come together to showcase their latest designs. Fashion Week events are generally held in high-end hotels, and they often last several days. In the run-up to a fashion show, celebrities are often spotted strolling down the red carpet, wearing the latest designer apparel. Celebrities are generally a staple of the fashion shows circuit because their popularity is such a hot commodity, especially during the late stages of a fashion show, when interest in the latest fashions peak.
One of the more interesting trends that has emerged recently is high fashion for men. Men have always been keen on attracting attention to their manly looks, but over the past few years, high fashion for men has developed into a highly stylized fashion segment. It is typically associated with hip hop culture and urban fashion, but in recent years, this fashion segment has grown in popularity amongst other forms of fashion. High fashion for men can include fashionable suits, designer jeans, and designer sneakers.