The point of London fashion

kuThere are three parts to your question, Marcus, and I’ll try to answer them each fairly, politely and without punching myself in the face. So, what’s “the point” of fashion week? Well, the point is that it allows designers to show their clothes to stores that decide whether or not to buy them. This is what’s called “running a business”. It is also so designers can show their collections to journalists who then write about them for people who are interested. From your tone, I gather you are not interested, Marcus, but one of the many strange things about life is that not everyone is interested in the same things. I, for example, could not give a single fig about sport, and yet I do not spend my time leaving comments beneath articles about the European Championships such as: “What is the point of this????? Boring!!!!! Look at all these overpaid idiots!!!!” as some folk are wont to do beneath articles about fashion. When I hear people talk about how excited they are about, I don’t know, Arsenal, I don’t run up to them bellowing: “But why?! None of us will ever be able to play like that so why is anyone wasting their time watching this rubbish?” I accept that some people like to watch a bunch of men kick a ball around a field on a rainy day, and I get on with the far more important activities in my life, such as styling my dog’s hair so that he resembles Andrew Ridgeley, or deciding who I fancy more, 1986 James Spader in Pretty in Pink or 1990 James Spader in White Palace (impossible decision, but one I plan to ponder for the rest of my life).

The reason people feel free to dismiss fashion with a “what’s the point” in a way that no one ever would about sport, or theatre, or film, or Apple product launches, is because fashion is aimed at women. Thus, it is, apparently, totally legitimate to dismiss it as frivolous. Silly little ladies and their lady things! Not important like kicking a ball, you see.

Your next point is slightly separate, although it is often used by fashion sceptics as an excuse for their loudly voiced dislike of the industry. Yes, the clothes are expensive and made for a minority. You could say the same of, say, theatre tickets, to say nothing of Apple products with their inbuilt obsolescence. Regarding the size issue, there is no question that the clothes are shown on indefensibly thin models. But to say that fashion is therefore irrelevant to bigger women, or even most women, is to let the idiotically sizeist designers win. Fashion is for everyone, and just because some ridiculous stylist who has destroyed their brain cells by reading only Vogue for 15 years thinks clothes “hang better” on an underweight eastern European teenager doesn’t mean that’s true. Any woman can look at the runways and get inspiration, such as how good your striped jumper would look with your metallic long skirt from Zara (thanks, Gucci, for that one) or how flat boots would look amazing with a floaty dress (ta, Victoria Beckham). Fashion shows aren’t just telling women to buy specific clothes – they show women how to wear clothes in more modern, often fun, ways. To say that fashion week is irrelevant to most women is to be on the same side as the idiot designers and stylists who think anyone over a size 10 should be happy wearing a burlap sack.