The Online Runways of Fashion Week

For 2020, fashion shows have joined the modern version of our offices and schools. The COVID-19 pandemic has necessitated many restrictions on large gatherings, so revamped online livestreams and videos have been the main source of information for post-coronavirus ‘spectators.’ Still, the shows went on.

 

 

Paris, London, Milan, and New York City remained the locations to tune in to. Each host location had been struck differently by coronavirus, but new and old designers alike were able to show off their new collections. London Fashion Week consisted of digital delivery and small live shows. Highlights include the denim adorned Burberry trench coats modeled off the traditional runway; Burberry chose to instead present new styles in a forest. While livestreaming fashion shows is certainly not a new concept, Burberry overhauled their show for over 30,000 viewers by adding four hosts; Bella Hadid, Rosalía, Erykah Badu, and Steve Lacy. Simone Rocha chose to showcase her self-named brand live to small groups of spectators. Her collection featured ruffled dresses and exquisite cloth, something she felt needed to be appreciated in person.

 

 

New York permitted larger audiences at outdoor shows, though still this was just a fragment of publicity that brands would want. Cautious Governor Cuomo limited indoor runways to half capacity and barred spectators from such events. In London, online-streamed shows reached audiences worldwide. Pandemic, protests, and politics were not enough to dampen the electrifying colors, sequins, and prints from brands like Tom Ford looking to promote escapism through clothing. Despite limitations on attendance, shows have only become more inclusive. Models of all ethnicities and sizes displayed dazzling new styles, and the ease of viewing combine to allow any fan to connect.

 

Paris Fashion Week also had few in-person shows, leaving many critics complaining about the difficulties of email interviews and low stream quality. Still, industry giants like Louis Vuitton and Balenciaga had the platform to make topic statement pieces about the importance of voting and the struggles of lockdown life.

In contrast to other locations, Milan held more than 20 physical shows. Fendi used the runway to display family themed collections, utilizing models Penelope Tree and Yasmin Le Bon to showcase elegant and matriarcal styles. Prada’s anticipated everyday uniform collection was streamed from a set containing an abundance of cameras to capture every detail and angle. Reflecting themes from other designers, Versace turned to a surreal underwater world for inspiration. These events were well received, especially as young brands like A-Cold-Wall* gain a foothold with accessible streamed shows.

 

Audience members at each show, and some models, covered their faces with the hottest accessory of 2020. Face masks have become a necessity for health and some designers have taken to creating matching mask and dress sets. Both Chanel and Louis Vuitton presented excellent 80s throwback designs. Overall, the events were dominated by a contrast and playful escapism and statement pieces reflecting current political and social climates. Despite the lack of hands-on events consumers can enjoy a plethora of behind the scenes and recap videos. Spring/Summer 2021 Fashion Week certainly was not expected or ideal, but it did create the opportunity for brands to explore a variety of new sets and delivery methods.

 

 

Sources:

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Iconic Glasses in Film

Ray-Ban Aviator

Photo creds: https://process.fs.grailed.com/AJdAgnqCST4iPtnUxiGtTz/cache=expiry:max/rotate=deg:exif/resize=width:2400,fit:crop/output=quality:70/compress/https://process.fs.grailed.com/u3HXOzOeSTiHJtLgZRTz

These long-lived glasses show no sign of slowing down; instead, they continue to be iconic specs in popular culture. Embracing their pilot heritage, the specs’ notable appearances in Top Gun these frames will deflect glare and attract attention.

Persol 714

Photo creds: https://www.insidehook.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/SteveMcQueen-he_1541608157.jpg?fit=1200%2C750

Movie star and film legend Steve McQueen has made numerous impacts on the fashion world, but perhaps none of which are as iconic as his Persol 714 model sunglasses. Popularizing the ingeniously practical folding design, these shades, with their recognizable blue tint, will remain timeless.

Gargoyles ANSI Classics

Photo creds: https://www.theterminatorfans.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/Ill-be-back-940x450.jpg

Probably unknown to most, these sunnies serve to protect the eyes from more than just the sun. Built to withstand high-velocity strikes, the Gargoyles made their own impact on the film and fashion industry when Arnold Schwarzenegger wore them in The Terminator. Looking at current fashion trends with wide, frameless face-shield style lenses, there is no doubt that these glasses were ahead of their time and continue to serve to influence modern designs.

Ray-Ban Wayfarer

Photo creds: https://productplacementblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/Eye-Love-Wayfarer-Sunglasses-Worn-by-Ansel-Elgort-in-Baby-Driver-3.jpg

It is impossible to forget the classic square design of the Wayfarers, sported by Hollywood talents and normal citizens alike. Never seeming to go out of style, these frames embody the meaning of the word “shades” as evidenced by their undoubtedly cool owners in The Blues Brothers and Baby Driver.

The True Cost: A Documentary to Spark a Change in the Fashion Industry

The True Cost: A Documentary to Spark a Change in the Fashion Industry

Catastrophes shine a light on the bad of the world, but it creates a spotlight for good people to see more clearly

Over time, the fashion industry has grown and evolved, using new tactics to stay successful and allow people to get their clothing products in a cheap and fast way. Although this has produced great results for consumers, it has negatively altered the lives of the people who actually spend their lives making our clothes.

 

Recently in my fashion class, Apparel Product Development, we were given an assignment to watch the documentary, The True Cost. After simply sitting down for two hours to watch this movie, my entire perspective on the fashion industry has changed, and yours can too. Through interviewing professionals and going inside the overseas factories which create our clothing, the film team depicted the part of the garment industry that businesses are too afraid to show.

Picture Creds: https://truecostmovie.com/
Picture Creds: https://www.purposeup.com/true-cost-fast-fashion-darkside/

The narrator went in depth to talk about some catastrophes that occurred as a result of the fashion industry, such as the 2013 Dhaka garment factory collapse, also called the Rana Plaza collapse. I was surprised that I had never heard of it before, considering how immense and heartbreaking it was. Many factory workers were killed and injured because their bosses never listened to warnings about the cracks in the walls and signs that the building was unsafe. This ignorance led to its collapse, which is now known as the “deadliest disaster in the history of the garment industry”. When horrible events like this occur, people mourn and reflect on what caused it to happen, but they also advocate for change. Although no one wishes for horrible things to happen, there is always a positive. Catastrophes shine a light on the bad of the world, but it creates a spotlight for good people to see more clearly, so that those who are in these unfortunate situations can get some help.

Unfortunately, the power players of the garment industry don’t seem to place a lot of value on the life of their employees. In interviews, fashion directors and industry leaders displayed very little regret for their lack of attention to the conditions of their workers. Executives seemed to think that they were doing a great service for their employees, because there are many worse jobs that could be working. Because the garment industry isn’t “traditionally dangerous” they thought the workers should be more grateful, but whether it is meant to be dangerous or not, it has still been the cause of a major loss of lives. 

Picture Creds: https://ourgoodbrands.com/real-impact-fast-fashion-industry-world/

Although these people can’t understand the hardships their employees go through, everyone deserves to work a good job where they don’t have to be afraid something horrible will happen to them. The people who work in these factories make less than a dollar and hour, simply trying to support their families and make a better life for themselves. It is unfair for such an economically powerful and influential industry to take advantage of these people who don’t have any better options.

I’m extremely grateful that my professor decided to assign this documentary to my class. It opened my eyes, and I’m sure it also opened the eyes of many of my classmates. That is why I decided to write about this topic, so that I can help spread the message that this documentary found important enough to share. We should all do our part to make factory workers’ lives safer, and have their stories heard so that they don’t have to go through the same thing as the Rana Plaza workers. I hope that all of you can think about what it truly means when the tag on your clothing reads “Made in China” or “Made in India” and who exactly sacrificed their wellbeing for the fast fashion that is so desired today.

Cultural Appropriation 101: How to Avoid it on Halloween

Cultural Appropriation 101: How to Avoid it on Halloween

With the recent transition into fall, October has finally begun, getting people everywhere excited about the long awaited “spooky-season”. The second the clock struck midnight on October 1st, the internet flooded with Halloween related memes and tweets, something that happens every year. Never a surprise – who wouldn’t love getting cozied up with a popular horror flick or decorating your home in fog of fake cobwebs and pumpkins? But, most importantly, the climax of October is when you can finally pull out your costumes and beautify yourself in the most outrageous manner possible. Halloween is, hands down, one of the most celebrated holidays in college (along with St. Patrick’s Day). It’s a time when everyone’s running to the mall, piecing together whatever they can for the lowest price whether for sexy or spooky. 

Picture Creds: https://guerrillafeminism.org/

Although choosing a Halloween costume may seem like a simple decision, more and more, people are being urged into thinking about what they wear. In recent years, there have been major issues of cultural appropriation in the fashion industry and media, making costume creating a risky business for those who don’t know the dos and donts. Unfortunately, many people are completely unaware of what cultural appropriation even is, and therefore are caught making bad fashion decisions without even realizing. According to dictionary.com, it is defined as, “the act of adopting elements of an outside, often minority culture, including knowledge, practices, and symbols, without understanding or respecting the original culture and context.”  (https://www.dictionary.com/e/pop-culture/cultural-appropriation/) Examples of this often found on Halloween night are when people dress up as Native Americans, Geishas, Sugar Skulls and other Day of the Dead inspired outfits.

Picture Creds: http://yblog.web.unc.edu/halloween-without-being-offensive-hint-its-possible/

Again and again, people are found making crucial mistakes when it comes to what they see as “costumes”. Finally, the minorities who are having their cultures appropriated are standing up for themselves. Everyone deserves to be respected, and equally have their culture and beliefs be respected. Although these wishes are being heard more and more, the issue is yet to be fully resolved. When searching for your perfect Halloween costume this year, think about your fellow classmates and friends (especially the people you don’t even know), because no one’s culture should be considered a costume. If young people begin to educate themselves now, as well as the people around them, we can end the cycle of cultural appropriation on Halloween. On such an adored holiday, no one should be feeling uncomfortable, so stick with a look that will impress, but not oppress. 

Picture Creds: http://gal-dem.com/undying-trend-cultural-appropriation/rangrave-undying-trend-of-cultural-appropriation/

The State of Wearable Technology

The State of Wearable Technology

The Wearable Tech Consumers Can Find Useful in Daily Life

The hybridization of clothing and electronics first appeared on the radar of average consumers in the early 2010s with the showcasing of Google Glass. While this product ended a forgotten commercial failure, Glass has found use in manufacturing and industry. The augmentation of reality, through smart applications and quick access to the Internet, however, has become mainstream through apps available on consumer smartphones. As manufacturing processes become more streamlined and cost efficient, a decreased cost of production will plausibly lead to realistic prices for consumers to add smart glasses to their collection of connected devices.

Image: https://dwhs7eit3h8mr.cloudfront.net/assets/images/a5146f4327c494253819e13c417b00df/wearables-e1455299947895.jpg

One common addition the average person’s growing selection of technology is the smartwatch, as the market offers a wide selection at all price points and levels of connectivity. The Apple Watch is one popular choice, due to its integration with the Apple smart ecosystem, and allows the user to access apps and send texts and phone calls from their wrist. Android users might find a similar smartwatch available from their platform manufacturer of choice. Other options include specialized fitness trackers to record miles walked and activity. While many fitness trackers and by extension smartwatches are purely utilitarian and for use at the gym or on runs, stylish options exist; many companies have invested in creating “hybrid” smartwatches, which at first glance appear to be normal mechanical timepieces. Oftentimes, a closer inspection reveals that many fitness trackers include a small screen for notification access or a heart rate tracker. The continued market interest in wrist-mounted smart devices has even led to high-end fashion companies such as Hermès cashing in by providing bands for Apple Watches. Louis Vuitton produces their own highly customizable smartwatch and even true Swiss watchmakers such as Tag Heuer (owned by Louis Vuitton) have unveiled smartwatches available to the public.

As mobile technology continues to improve in power and form, companies are beginning to integrate smart technology in more unconventional ways to create smart clothing. Recently, Google and Levi’s revealed their second iteration of Jacquard: a collaboration to create a connected smart jacket. This new innovation combines the classic looks of Levi’s denim trucker jackets with the power of Google’s Assistant and interaction with the user’s smartphone from the cuff of a sleeve. Jacquard also released a project with Saint Laurent, a smart backpack with an integrated touchpad in a shoulder strap, along with a vibration motor and notification light.

It’s clear that smart accessories have already made an impact on the consumer, and that high-end fashion will continue to pave the way with smart clothing. Google innovates with Glass and Jacquard, having created smart fibers that can be woven into fabrics. New smart clothing technologies are constantly created both by small tech startups and established giants. As America moves toward more technological connectivity with smart homes and AI integration, clothing is bound to be drawn into the mix. In the meantime, accessorizing seems to be the way to go until smart clothing options further develop.

Stepping Out of Your Comfort Zone

Stepping Out of Your Comfort Zone

By: Marissa Cuka

The University of Delaware broke enrollment records this past Fall 2018.

 

24,120 total students enrolled for the Fall semester, which is the highest number of students enrolled at UD. The University now has students representing all 50 states, and a record 2,246 international students representing 150 countries. At the Newark campus, 4,249 students are first year students, most of who are non-residents. These numbers and more reached a record high for UD, and are significant in cultivating a diverse and cultured campus environment.

 

Each student at UD, whether a first year undergraduate student or a student enrolled in a graduate program, has a story coming into college. Some students are from Delaware and may have high school friends attending UD; others come from different states or even countries and are forced to completely start over in a new environment.

 

Previous experiences definitely shape people, but it is the new college environment that demands a little more from them; they must step out of their comfort zones, whether it is academically, geographically, or socially.

 

Based on the Fall 2018 enrollment statistics, students are bound to meet someone with a story different from theirs. By connecting with students from different backgrounds, each person can learn something from the other and gain a new perspective, whether it is major or minor.

Photographed by Alisha Lolk

College is an adjustment but allows students to grow in many ways. There are a plethora of classes to take, student organizations to join, and events to participate in. These opportunities bring together many different students and allow them to get involved, have fun, and learn new things, so it is important to take advantage of them. The skills, memories, and friendships that students make is what makes up their personal college experience and shapes them as they continue their college journeys and their post-college plans.



Photographed by Evan Krape

College can be a difficult transition, but stepping out of your comfort zone is essential for making the most out of your time in college. Each student will have their own personal college experience, but no matter how different each one is, every Blue Hen is connected by the University of Delaware.

Photographed by Evan Krape

Starbucks Now Delivers in San Francisco Through Uber Eats: Expansion to Follow

Starbucks Now Delivers in San Francisco Through Uber Eats: Expansion to Follow

After having successful test runs in Miami back in fall 2018, Starbucks announced in December its plan to provide delivery services from 2,000 stores in the US by 2019. Why the change? Though coffee sales continue to flourish in America, the famous coffee supply chain struggles to compete against businesses. Think McDonald’s and Wawa (who sell a Cup of Joe for less than $5) – even Starbucks’ most popular lattes and espresso drinks cannot win. 

 

With an additional $2.49 delivery fee, hopefully, the new Uber services will become another source of steady income. In addition to delivering through Uber Eats in Miami, Starbucks added services in San Francisco starting on Tuesday, January 22, and will add Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and Washington, D.C. in the spring.

 

 Starting delivery services should bring Starbucks more customer loyalty. Especially for employees who work a typical eight-hour day from 9-5 in addition to taking care of a family – stopping and waiting for coffee is not a priority, nor is it reasonable. Now, hustle-and-bustle Americans can order Starbucks with the simply use of an app at the convenience of their own time. Though some people prefer Wawa and Dunkin drinks over those from Starbucks’ (specifically, the prices), coffee-enthusiasts will feel more inclined to consistently invest in $5 Starbucks’ because of its new fast and furious delivery services.

Meghan Markle’s Involvement with Greek Live at Northwestern University

Meghan Markle’s Involvement with Greek Live at Northwestern University

The Duchess of Sussex rose to fame in the United States entertainment industry through playing the fictional character Rachel Zane on Suits. Before having a flouring acting and humanitarian career in the States and later marrying the Duke of Sussex in the spring of 2018, Markle studied at Northwestern University, where she is a sister of Kappa Kappa Gamma.

Photograph from Express / Getty Images 

Leading up to Meghan and Harry’s Royal wedding, Kappa Kappa Gamma’s sisters reflected on how Markle carries out the sorority’s core values of “inspiring others and making a positive impact in the world.” Carli Hahn, a sister from a Florida chapter, told Express that she believes “Meghan will be able to use the skills she’s learned and use them with her new role in the royal family.”Liz Kores Graham, who rushed with Markle during their freshman year, described how “Meg was sort of always this ethereal, sophisticated, beautiful creature who lived with us and was always willing to lend you a top” and additionally commented on Markle’s diplomacy when conflicts arose between the sisters.

 

 

In 2014, the former Suites star visited Northwestern, where hundreds of students piled into Ryan Auditorium to hear to Markle speak at a panel discussion. She talked about her participation in the university’s Dance Marathon and joked how the local “24-hour Burger King also definitely helped me put on the Freshman Fifteen.” North by Northwestern also documented Markle’s reminiscence of using fake I.D.s to work at a bar in Chicago get into the Keg.

 

 

Though highly accomplished, Markle once lived a life much like many students today.

 

“Sunday Service:” Rumor Has it That Kanye Might Start a Church

“Sunday Service:” Rumor Has it That Kanye Might Start a Church

“Jesus Walks” 

God show me the way because the Devil’s tryin’ to break me down

(Jesus Walks with me)

The only thing that I pray is that my feet don’t fail me now (I want Jesus)

(Jesus Walks)

And I don’t think there is nothing I can do now to right my wrongs

(Jesus Walks with me)

Jesus certainly does! Or at least that’s what Kanye preaches in his 2004 hit from The College Dropout . . . and potentially in his future “Sunday Service,” as Kim Kardashian called it.

Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Sunday Service Kanye West

An article from The Christian Report offered insight into the possibility that the rapper and his choir seemed to rehearse for a gospel-like service. Kanye and Kim’s Instagram story recorded the choir singing “‘Ghost Town” from his latest album Ye, “Father Stretch My Hands” off of his self proclaimed “gospel album,” The Life of Pablo . . . [and] “Heard ‘Em Say” from his sophomore album Late Registration[.]”

On Twitter, both Kim  and Kanye hinted at the possibility of future services.

(Header image: IMDB)

Are Memes Unhealthy? Study Shows the Detrimental Effects on Your Wellbeing

Are Memes Unhealthy? Study Shows the Detrimental Effects on Your Wellbeing

Kids idolize them. Parents are appalled by them. Elders become lost trying to decode what today’s youth mean by them. “Memes,” regardless of your opinion, have undoubtedly changed our means of interpersonal and mass communications. After all, it’s completely logical of the world to compress our acrimony and passive-aggression into an image of Kermit the Frog sipping Lipton Tea. There’s also rationality behind our thinking Brads and Chads in Pi Kappa Pi signify fraternity douchebags and Caucasian aristocracy, right?

 

We can’t deny, nor stop laughing over, the angle of truth memes shine light on. However, non-meme enthusiasts who struggle to grasp the concept of Grumpy Cat (sorry, grandma and grandpa) are, more than likely, disillusioned as to what the f*ck popular culture is like in 2019.

 

In our minds, memes perfectly summarize the universal feelings of dog sh*t you and ecstasy we constantly experience everyday. We then take these images, tweets, and videos to not only bring attention to our own thoughts, but memes are used to additionally acknowledge current events and celebrity news (both fake and actual). Memes are relevant to the particular time and are easy to connect with; thus, it’s no wonder as to why memes have the god-like powers of connecting hundreds thousands of people – this time, through reshares and likes for these humorous and relatbale images.

 

So, what are the drawbacks to these internet sensations?

 

The wide range of applications and increasing popularity of memes makes us yearn for recognition for these relatable posts. After all, there is no better accomplishment than receiving thousands of affirmations from Instagram-users, who double tap your memes and respond with, what other than, more memes. Consequently, we’re hungry to highlight unhealthy mannerisms for likes and publicity. For instance, Paper Magazine featured an October 2018 study composed by Loughborough University that exemplified obesity in the UK. The study found that “memes that make light of or promote unhealthy dietary habits normalize that unhealthy behavior among teens.” Most people are aware of the dangers of obesity on the body. However, we dismiss how many meme-lovers today – most of whom are millenials and youth – take a serious problem like obesity and use it as an opportunity to transform a victim into an internet star.

 

This sounds grave – even inhumane. Regardless, this is how we make popular culture “popular” in the 21st century – through consistent meme consumption. To draw the line between memes and reality, we must identify the irony and message behind the light-hearted meme. What does the meme imply, which parties does the meme involve, and what does the meme bring attention to? We don’t need to reiterate on how memes bring us pure joy, as they’re mean’t to be taken only with a grain of salt, and at the end of the day, our appreciation for sarcastic, amusing memes isn’t the problem. The problem commences when our appreciation takes suffering and turns it into an affliction for likes and comments.