Fashion Lingo


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Fashionese may be a hard language to speak but once you get the lingo down it can be an cinch.  Here are some terms to beef up your fashion vocabulary:

Couture– this a common term, one that is thrown out loosely to mean something elaborate and fancy.  This is way more expensive than the designer stuff, and includes haute couture and ready-to-wear.

Covert-couture: Something that costs a lot of money but doesn’t look expensive; only the person wearing it and a true fashionite can tell the difference and worth.

Fierce: Like this word needs an introduction; use it to mean that fashion is cutting-edge and fashion-forward; use it too much and you just come off as annoying.

Kitsch– this is fashion’s expiration date; something that used to be in but is no longer considered fashionable.  For example, wearing “1930’s Trousseau” fashion, although being the height of fashion at the time, would be considered kitsch now.

(Note: An intentional use of kitsch is called camp.  If you intentionally dress up like a celebrity to be ironic, then you are being campy.  Sometimes exaggerated fashion is not intentional, resulting in campy personas; a good example is Lady Gaga.)

One-off–  If you are lucky and know the designer really well then you probably can get a one-off made for you.  A one-off is a one-of a-kind fashion; only one exists.

Pickle-stabbers– Not the utensils you use for eating your snacks at a photo-shoot with, but the extremely high and pointy heels that you wear instead.  So pointy, you could probably stab a pickle with them, hence the name pickle-stabbers.

Trashic– Tragic and trashy; something this bad can only make a fashion statement.

Trickle-Up Trend– This is when fashion from unexpected places catches on and hits the runway.  This trend is usually based on styles from the streets.

Trunk-Shows– Heard a lot around and after fashion shows.  Trunk shows are held to showcase a designer’s latest collection and can be a great opportunity to get a good deal too.

Vanity sizing – The anomaly that happens in the dressing room when you try on your size and it’s too big.  (Obviously a marketing ploy to make you think that you are smaller than you actually are)

Perspective by Amanda Holst

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