In the past few years, mass marketing has hit the world of high fashion with a vengeance. Several of the biggest names in fashion like Versace, Missoni and Cavalli have been expanding their brands to establish wide-ranging design empires. These empires include clothing, housewares and accessory lines that run the gamut from chic runway collections to trendy diffusion lines for stores such as Target and H&M. While I completely support the accessibility and style that is afforded to all at such varying price points, I take issue with the quality of these garments. As brands have expanded, customer bases have grown and profits have soared but the quality of what is produced on the high end has radically dropped.
Once upon a time, a designer collection trouser was a work of art, beautifully cut and lined with impeccable stitching. Now, finding a lined pant is like an urban legend, it doesn’t exist. This is upsetting for many reasons but taking out the financial issue (i.e. an unlined Michael Kors pant costs $900) just focusing on the creative aspect, these collections used to have workmanship that made you swoon and now we are lucky if the stitching stays in for longer than two wears. I love fashion designers as I love artists; their visions inspire us to look outside the box and adorn ourselves in fanciful ways. It’s not a coincidence that fashion houses like Oscar de la Renta, Chanel, Givenchy, Dior and Ferragamo to name a few have chosen not to have a diffusion line. Their workmanship is impeccable and their creative designs are flawless because they are not about mass production, they respect the art of making a designer garment. Therefore, I wish that more designers would remain true to artistic inspiration instead of quantity over quality.
-Melissa Brown & Benjamin Miller