China was, and will always be, in its heart of hearts, an empire — whether it is royal, revolutionary, or techno-bureaucratic-communist-cum-capitalist.
If there is but one cornerstone of “Punk” as fashion, it is what Dame Vivienne Westwood dubbed “confrontation dressing.” Swastikas, tampons, spray-painted swears, safety pins — these were the tools with which this particular postmodern machine of resistance, youth, and style were forged. The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s spring costume exhibition, Punk: From Chaos to Couture, hovered over the essence of this defensive dress, but skirted the issues of subculture to champion superficial style.
More often than ever the term “haute couture” pervades department stores, small-scale boutiques and celebrities’ clothing lines, but the appropriation of the term does not make it anything special.
So Alexander McQueen was honored with a retrospective at the Met’s Costume Institute, but the real question is, who’s next? We may end up finding our answer in an obituary, but for now let’s look at some retrospective-worthy designs and designers.
Sure the economy is still crappy, but Netherlands-based Droog design has found another way to be creative. In the past several months they have been bidding on liquidation auction items from bankrupt companies and they have invited 14 designers to re-interpret them.