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IMPORTANCE OF HISTORY IN FASHION

‘He who understands History, knows how to find continuity between

That which Was That, Which Is and that which Will Be!’

This quote clearly explains that there is definitely a strong link between our past, present and future. Just as the common saying goes, even fashion repeats itself. Fashion recycles itself very often. As the generations change, the approach to fashion also changes, and as the younger generations didn’t go through those trends, it seems new to them.

History has always been the greatest source of infinite ideas that the designers take an inspiration from. Be it Versace, Jean Paul Gaultier or Valentino; all have mixed historical elements with contemporary manners to create timeless collections. The study of the past also helps us more to compare as we start recognizing the patterns from the past. It enhances our observation and thinking skills thereby developing your taste for design.

History is all about understanding relationships between people and events. It makes one understand how one thing at a certain time in a certain place has influenced another thing in a different time and place. It’s only because of this understanding of long-term patterns and repetition in trends, that one is able to do a perfect forecast for the next season.

It is interesting to note how so many notable brands have infused history and mythology in their logo designs. For instance, Versace took an inspiration from Hellenistic period and based their logo on the Greek mythological god, Medusa. Similarly, Nike uses the sign of ‘swoosh’ inspired by Greek warriors as a symbol of enormous power. Italian Luxury/Sports vehicle manufacturer Maserati created its iconic trident logo after a mythical fountain of Neptune.

Even the trend forecast for SS 20 done by WGSN indicates the use of a lot of references from various historical eras and art movements.

I therefore feel that design history is worth studying not only to see the connections with the past but also to find the best of the best mentors.

‘Fashion is a part of the world and part of history. It’s not a meaningless swirl of meaningless clothes. They (clothes) reflect the times.’

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