What defines the fashion industry? That year after year, the industry tells us mere mortals what’s new, what’s exciting, what’s cool, and what we should be wearing. The thing that continues to intrigue me is, why then, do the biggest names of the industry pretty much dress the same day after day. From Karl Lagerfeld’s black suits to Anna Wintour’s floral print dresses and mules, to Rahul Mishra’s black coat over a white shirt and denims, and Diane von Furstenberg’s wrap dress, some of the most influential and inspirational players in the game spend all day creating trends which they never follow.
A uniform: it seems to me is the nirvana-state equivalent of the fashion style guru hierarchy; the higher up you go, the closer you are to a fashion statement that is constant and definitive of who you are. I have read several discussions on why having a uniform is not only productive but also make you feel like you are at your effortless and natural best. It’s the one perfect item you love and defines you, it’s something you have chiseled at for years before achieving the result you were looking for, it’s your own personal Hillary suit.
Uniforms that fashion legends don are in no way a matter of ease. They have achieved this enviable level of identifiable style because they have taken an inspired and carefully considered move. They know that this sartorial mode defines them and sets them apart.
And who wouldn’t want to stand out in a crowd? And doesn’t it sound lifechanging to always know what to wear, no matter what the circumstance or occasion?
But how do you commit to only a few pieces of clothing? Is that monogamous relationship truly satisfying? And isn’t one ever tempted to cheat? Won’t wearing the same thing, day in day out, feel sartorially dissatisfying? What do you do on days when you want the brightness of your outfit to perk up your mood? Would then a new haircut or a drool-inducing pair of heels do the trick?
These are the questions that run through my head when I think of deciding on a uniform of sorts.
Practitioners advise starting out with work uniforms to test the waters. That way you have the weekend to dress completely different and not get stuck in a rut. Work uniforms allow you to reinforce a divide between workdays and weekends. It allows you to develop a signature which is easily recognizable and identifiable with you; a consistent fashion choice being always more noticeable. Add to that the amount of stress it reduces with the whole “what should I wear” question being erased completely. Some businesses often use uniforms as a way to make their staff easily identifiable from the public. While some may use a color scheme, others may use workwear embroidery to have their businesses’ logo stitched onto the uniform, making the distinction a little clearer.
It’s the perfect sartorial solution.
Tees and harems, tanks and ripped jeans, long, loose kurta-like dresses with palazzos, I have gone through stages of uniforms depending on where I have been in life personally and professionally. Finding my uniform seems like it’s still a long way off. I do have the color pat down, though. Black will always be my hue/shade/lack of color of choice.
Now if someone could sort out the silhouette for me.
Fashion Gods, are you listening?