There was a glorious time in recent fashion history when it was the big brands that ruled. Notorious names we all know, kings and queens of the red carpets and catwalks of the most coveted and well-known fashion events.
But the future holds great changes.
The world of fashion has evolved considerably in the past years, in unexpected directions, with the gap between the big high-fashion brands and consumers widening more and more.
Let’s see why and try to imagine together a less oligarchic and more democratic future of fashion, under the banner of choice and freedom of expression.
From the catwalks to the street. Evolution of fashion
The relationship between haute couture and ready-to-wear has always been fluctuating, characterised by alternating phases.
The 90s, in particular, represented a return to luxury.
Pomp, magnificence and excess became a must once again, both on and off the catwalks, where attempts were made to reproduce that extravagant style, made of frills, sequins and exaggerated details seen on the stars of the jet-set, even in everyday clothing.
Thirty years later, we are witnessing what will be remembered as a new era of fashion.
Today, fashion comes down from its pedestal, leaves the catwalks and takes to the streets, among ordinary people, where it learns to dare not with the ostentation of luxury, but by breaking the pre-set patterns of a glittering and inaccessible beauty to which the vision - and the power - of a select few had accustomed us. A break that, far from being provocative, is based on other values: laissez-vivre, constant research and experimentation, with the aim of building a context in which everyone is democratically granted the right to express themselves. Fashion stops being for the few elected, and becomes for everyone - colouring the concept of ready-to-wear with a further nuance.
The Millenials Gap. The needs of new consumers
To credit for this change are the Millenials and the Gen Z, who have replaced 'beauty' as unattainable perfection to be inspired by with an idea of beauty (and luxury) that is accessible and essential.
The everyday everyday, strongly rooted in these new generations, is accompanied by a desire not so much to amaze, but to create alternative, almost tailor-made looks, which make uniqueness and authenticity of the individual their new reference values.
Even the previously strongly felt need to homologate by identifying oneself with a logo is falling by the wayside in favour of a much more personal, fluid aesthetic identity, based on individual research and therefore much less influenced by the masses - and the diktats of fashion.
And big brands are not always able to keep up with the times and respond to the needs of this new segment of consumers.
The new luxury is niche brands
Haute couture often lags behind emerging, younger and less structured brands that manage to intercept and immediately satisfy new trends and consumers needs.
This approach gives birth to new brands that make sustainability, genderless aesthetics and essentiality the main feauters of their collections.
Examples of this are brands that make their core a new spartan aesthetic that harks back to the uniform trend, such as Cmmn Swdn and Uniform Bridge, or the futuristic proposals of 3.Paradis, Misbhv and 1017 Alyx 9sm. To end with the positive vibes of Eytys and Axel Arigato, which foresee a future of fashion that is more and more essential, but which does not renounce showing off its personality through increasingly conscious and courageous choices.
All this is in stark contrast with the main line of big fashion houses, which desperately try to remain anchored in the aesthetics of excess, seeking to astonish rather than dress, to provoke, exasperate and take concepts squeezed to the extreme - the recent Met Gala 2022 red carpet is a tangible example.
When, on the other hand, in a world full of people shouting and trying to impose their vision, perhaps in order to make a difference we should lower our tones, learn to whisper, to speak softly, as many brands are doing, without clamour and with bowed heads, and still slowly conquering the market.
The same brands that Strike is committed to scrupulously researching in order to offer its customers selection that is as varied as possible, one that respects and enhances differences and otherness, to meet the expectations of a consumer who is increasingly knowledgeable, aware of himself and the world around him, ethically - even before being aesthetically - involved. Ultimately, more and more unique.