Why I Cannot Respect The Mainstream Fashion Industry

19 November 2015

The Racism

Where are the WOC on the catwalks? Especially those WOC whose appearances don't fit into the now popularised mixed-race 'Beyonce/Kim K' look. Also, where are the Asian models? In fact, where is Diversity altogether? The Family Guy joke that says 'let's spot Diversity in an Abercrombie & Fitch Catalogue' is so true. Perhaps worse is the attitude that is is not necessary to even attempt to disguise racism in the industry, with many professional models calling out the industry on its blatant mistreatment of minorities.

The Characters

There seems to be a pervasive attitude of pretension and arrogance that is unique to the creative industries. This is often coupled with a judgmental stare, skinny latte and a generally unpleasant atmosphere. This is not to say that everyone in the fashion industry acts as such, but enough people do to make the industry seem particularly unfriendly and intimidating by reputation. I am not sure if this is because of the highly creative nature, or that high fashion breeds the elitism that translates into plain nastiness.

The Business Model

So much of the fashion industry runs on unpaid labour and exploiting younger creatives to the advantage of companies. Some places won't even cover transport and food costs - so you're not only working for them for free, you're working for them at YOUR expense!

The Wastefulness

It is probably true that big fashion houses have their clothes incinerated in order to preserve their exclusivity. It is probably true that Abercrombie buys up all it's old stock from thrift stores because it doesn't want it's garments ending up on homeless people. How anyone could give the 'OK' to this kind of behaviour I have no idea - it's wasteful and inhuman when there are people who need to be clothed.

All of the above are a shame, because fashion itself is a wonderful world of beauty and escapism - it's just being let down by the industry behind it right now. Let's hope it will recover and sustainability and equality will one day prevail!