Tuesday, 11 November 2008


Grazia magazine have published a report that claims female shoppers have become more savvy in their clothing choices. We have become a nation of "Recessionistas". So despite daily reports that we are heading into a global recession (are we not already in one?), we are not allowing this to stop us from buying but instead it's making us think carefully and do our research prior to buying.

71% are worried about the credit crunch affecting their lifestyle
46% are cutting back on their spending
83% of women still shop for clothes, accessories & beauty products at least once a week (up 2% from 6 months ago)
53% are selective about what they buy
58% feel better for researching and thinking twice about what they buy
67% bought an item at least once a week
31% bought something new at least 4 or 5 times a week
32% no longer shell out for risky one season trends
28% choose classic items
65% only use existing money to pay for goods rather than use credit cards

Jane Bruton, editor-in-chief of Grazia, said:
"Reading all the doom and gloom recession predictions it's easy to believe shopping is dead and fashion will never be the same again. There will be tumbleweed blowing around the High Street fashion stores and we'll all have to wear 'safe' black trousers and 'sensible' court shoes for the next five years.
"But our survey proves that, though of course we're worried about the economic climate, it's just turning us into more responsible, savvy shoppers who are becoming more creative and inventive with our wardrobes. Women have always used fashion as a feel-good way of expressing themselves. And no credit crunch is going to change that. Instead it's making us braver, not safer, with our style."
This week also, Barney's New York Creative Director Simon Doonan states,
"We're all doing expense cutting. It's really terrifying. But I think my job is to sustain the idea that fashion is exciting and glamorous.
"When war broke out, Quentin Crisp went out and bought 10 pounds of henna. You don't get it, do you? It means when times are tough, you have to be even more fabulous and more glamorous, and you have to rise above it".

Source: channel4.com, vogue.com

It will be interesting to see just how the current economy affects the fashion industry, if at all, and the way style will evolve. In previous decades, World War II for example had a massive effect, the fabrics available in ration times were so limiting that once the war was over, Dior's New Look created a whole new silhouette and had a massive impact on the industry and the way women looked. In the 1980's, a decade synonymous with wealth and opulence, the style was very over the top. Huge shoulder pads, big hair, bold jewellery - the bigger the better. From what I can see around me, the "credit crunch" we're in is encouraging us to be thrifty. If we want lower prices but still want to maintain quality, we're turning to vintage on a mass scale. Although vintage has been fashionable for a while now, it is becoming more widely appealing to the masses.

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