Fashion is a multibillion-dollar global enterprise that encompasses a wide range of industries, from the haute couture clothes designed by world-famous designers to the mass-produced shoes and clothing sold in malls and markets worldwide. Fashion can also refer to the latest trend or style, especially as it relates to clothing, but it also portrays trends in food, art, and even language.
Fashion reflects and influences culture, it is a reflection of the society that creates it. It can be a way of self-expression, or a form of protest against the status quo. For example, when people wear T-shirts with the name of a slain political figure or activist, they are making a statement about their own values and beliefs. The same is true of wearing clothes from brands that donate money to environmental causes, or those that use cruelty-free silk (from worms that are not boiled alive).
Regardless of what it means to us as individuals, there is no doubt that Fashion is an incredibly influential industry and force in the world. It can change our perceptions of ourselves and others, it can make us feel confident or insecure, it can be a source of entertainment or a way to show off your unique personality. And, no matter what it is, it’s always changing. In fact, we asked four Mercyhurst fashion alums what fashion means to them, and their answers were as diverse as the colors of the rainbow.