Many fashions are popular and many different cultures have different fashions at any given time. The word fashion can literally mean 'a habitual practice' - but, somewhat ironically, fashion is in fact in a constant state of flux, and the people who go against the established manner, those who go for the 'weird' rather than the traditional, are the icons that prompt the next fashion. Fashion is prompted by what is rudimentally style that has not recently been in fashion.
Consider this then - Style and fashion are separate entities. Style can be fashion, but fashion is not always style. In side-lining fashion and giving style main focus, an era's bias can be removed. And what does that mean? It means we can be free to appreciate the art, joy, self expression, humour and honesty expressed by all those who are or have been dressed in a manner that flows at a distance from fashion's rushing channel.
Well that’s the start of it. But what do I mean by eccentric style? Style usually has a subtle beauty to it - but in the circus-ring of life, the vast audience finds itself awed and inspired by THE ENTERTAINERS - Those who go beyond the typical and traditional, who don't walk along the ground but fly through the air on a trapeze. As sequins catch the light, it is these 'entertainers' who have the ability to dazzle the eyes of expectation and to inspire the future.
So, yes, keep an eye on fashion. It can be a great chart to peruse for ideas. But certainly don’t be afraid to mix it up a bit. Find the innocent, unbiased and unstereotyped joy in clothes that a child has in playing dress-up with its mother’s wardrobe.
A little of the eccentric can be found with unusual fabrics, silhouettes, a hat, a bag, an outlandish necklace or quirky earrings – have fun with it! And if you’re more timid, perhaps try a little quirky accessory on top of a more traditional outfit – add a headband, a bold piece of jewellery, a full skirt or sculptured heels. Experiement!
I read somewhere, a long time ago, about a woman who used to dress boldly, with large hats often seeming more like sculpture than attire - one specific hat of hers featured a scale model of a ship, a galleon, if I remember rightly. And what did she say of her style? She said she dressed to entertain the world. To give people something different to look at, something interesting and beautiful to appreciate. I forget how correctly I may be remembering this - but perhaps this way of looking at style, fashion and attire in general is a really wonderful and beautifully selfless approach.
So play with it – try something different. Have fun and brighten your day (as well as potentially someone else’s too). It’s an art form. And what is art if it’s not an expression of self?
Judge not least ye be judged.
Walk into a room and give everyone something to talk about ;)
Coming up - 'The Entertainers' (The icons of Eccentric Style)
Thanks for reading,