People have different attitudes to fashion. Some do not care what they wear; others, especially women, are very choosy about what to wear and like spending a fortune on clothes. Some people buy ready – made clothes; others prefer to have them tailor made; some people buy clothes at second – hand shops; some people have excellent taste in clothes and are always dressed perfectly. Some people want to be dressed according to the latest fashion at all costs and buy only expensive designer clothes. It is a passion for them to follow fashion rules. For some people fashion is a way how to distinguish themselves from other people. Different factors influence the style of clothing, such as cultural aspects, climate and social status. The invention of the sewing machine in the second half of the 19th century brought about a revolution. It led to the mass production of clothes and ready-made clothes became relatively cheap. Today’s fashion deals not only with clothes, but also shoes, accessories such as handbags, gloves, belts, hats, scarves or jewellery and glasses, and even hair styles and make-up. Throughout history, many materials have been used for clothes. Materials have ranged from leather and furs to woven materials, to elaborate and exotic natural and synthetic fabrics. Everybody usually looks for first class, washable, easy to iron, crease and shrink resistant fabric. The design of materials can be plain or patterned. The way we dress also depends on our taste, the season and the proper occasion. In the summer we wear thin summer dresses, loose blouses with a low neckline, short sleeves or sleeveless, shorts or Bermuda shorts and various T-shirts. On feet we usually wear sandals. When we go swimming, we put on a swimsuit or trunks. In the winter we need to wear something warm – trousers, jeans, cardigans, polo neck sweaters, jumpers, anoraks, winter coats and jackets, fur coats, gloves, caps, hats, hoods and scarves. We keep our feet warm by wearing boots. On special occasions it‘s a must to be dressed appropriately. When we go to a concert or the theatre, we usually dress up. Men can wear a dark suit, a shirt and a tie or a bowtie, and sometimes a dinner jacket. Women wear an evening dress or a cocktail dress. Whereas for sport we put on sportswear, such as T-shirts, shorts, tracksuits, sweatshirts, a waterproof jacket or an anorak and sports shoes such as trainers.
Humans have been extremely inventive in making special clothing for environmental hazards. Some examples include spacesuits, diving suits, swimsuits, bee-keeper gear, motorcycle leathers, high-visibility clothing, and other kinds of protective clothing. However, the distinction between clothing and protective equipment is not always clear cut, since clothes designed to be fashionable often have protective value and clothes designed for functional use often consider fashion in their design.
The word “fashion” in itself covers a wide range of different styles and trends. Many people “dress to impress” and others simply dress to be noticed. Young people all over the world are becoming extremely fashion conscious; whether boys or girls, they are all fascinated by it. Some people want to look their best in order to impress others; some simply wear what suits them and mainly what they can afford.
Answer the questions:
- What is your attitude towards fashion?
- Why do you think some people spend so much money on brand-name clothes?
- What is your favourite piece of clothing and why? When do you wear it? How long have you had it?