Saturday, June 16, 2012

Trickle-Up Fashion in the 21st Century & the Resurgence of the Punk Aesthetic

Beginning centuries ago when fashion first became more than just a functional aspect of life, the fashion world has experienced a long history of lower classes in society following those within the upper-class and what they wear. However, another theory has permeated the market due to the success of street fashion. With an increase in “equitable wealth distribution and modern, rapid manufacturing techniques, style differentiation across social classes is essentially non-existent” (King & Ring, 1980). The trickle-up theory is the newest approach concerning fashion movement, and  it has made a considerable impact. Starting in the street and “adopted from lower income groups, innovation eventually flows to upper-income groups” (Theories of Fashion, 2009). A variety of classic pieces in today’s market have been introduced due to the trickle-up theory including jeans, military-inspired clothing, and the T-shirt. 

The punk subculture emerged in the 1970s as oppositional fashion leaders who reflected organized resistance to social institutions, values, and practices. Reinforcing alternative ideologies and actions, the punk movement was a reaction to the back-to-earth mentality of the hippies of the 1970s. That the subculture was comprised of mostly working class youth with a nihilistic, anarchic ideology shocked older generations who were a stark contrast to this new wave of thought. Punk style encompassed anti-consumerism, androgynous, sartorial havoc, and continued to thrive in the “underground scene until 1976″ (Youngs, 2002). However, punk bands The Sex Pistols and The Ramones soon gave the listening world a glimpse of their subculture’s theoretic dogma. Malcolm McLaren, manager of The Sex Pistols, and British fashion designer Vivienne Westwood were two iconic originators of bringing punk fashion into the mainstream. Popular punk pieces that are found in virtually any retail store today include Dr. Martens and motorcycle boots, leather pants, leopard-patterned pieces, and shirts or jackets accessorized with safety pins and studs.Punk fashion continues to be a popular postmodern aesthetic for haute couture with fashion designers having joined the trend including the likes of Jean Paul Gaultier, Anna Sui, Diane Von Furstenberg, and Balmain.
A consistent resurgence of the punk aesthetic has occurred throughout the past few decades, and designers and retailers have continuously incorporated this style into their collections. That this subculture has left a legacy of its own reflects the perpetual nature of the trickle-up theory of fashion movement. Street fashion and lower rungs in the social ladder will continue to provide inspiration for the fashion industry through this newer theory that supports true originality and modernity.

Image courtesy of:
King, C. W. & Ring, L. J. (1980). The dynamics of style and taste adoption and diffusion: Contributions from fashion theory. Advances in Consumer Research, 7(1), 13-16. Retrieved from
Theories of Fashion (2009). Clothing and Fashion Encyclopedia. Retrieved from
Youngs, I. (2002, December 23). A brief history of punk. BBC News. Retrieved from

Monday, August 29, 2011

Saturday, July 30, 2011

There and Back Again

I'm currently sitting in the corner of one of those corporate fat-cat's establishments aka Starbucks near Miramar Beach, waiting for the rest of the family to return from a 4-hour fishing trip in the bay (wasn't really buying into the whole 'experience' the trip entailed myself), and realizing the last 2 weeks flew by. I'm shocked I made a few posts on here during this vacation as it is. Jet skiing early this week, returning to our favorite hole-in-the-wall restaurant 'Another Broken Egg Café', and soaking up limitless sun has come to a close all too soon. Walton County is an area everyone needs to visit at least once in their lifetime.

I just found these shoes from designer Nicholas Kirkwood on a website I discovered this morning and I am lusting like no other right now. Kirkwood has designed for the likes of Rodarte, Ghost, John Rocca and Erdem. This lace wedge is crafted with blue suede and a layer of gold fabric. There's no way I'd be able to add these babies to my shopping cart but I guess I can live vicariously for now and bookmark the page?

Images courtesy of

Sunday, July 24, 2011


Last week in Santa Rosa and I think it's safe to say I've done a pretty decent job with the tan. Between kayaking everyday to the sandbar near the coast and reading the second book in George R.R. Martin's amazing series, "A Clash of Kings", I have no desire for this week to end. I was perusing some designer's collections for Fall/Winter 2011 this morning and I thought I'd post some of Gareth Pugh's designs. His line is just incredible. The electric blue is gorgeous and the construction of some of these pieces gives a true glimpse of Pugh's talent and ingenuity. Some of these look so Matrix-esque. Credit to Fashion Gone Rouge for images.
The construction of this badass!

I absolutely love this outfit.