What is Fashion?

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What is Fashion?

For centuries individuals or societies have used clothes and other body adornment as a form of nonverbal communication to indicate occupation, rank, gender, sexual availability, locality, class, wealth and group affiliation. Fashion is a form of free speech. It not only embraces clothing, but also accessories, hairstyles, beauty and body art. What we wear and how and when we wear it, provides others with a shorthand to subtly read the surface of a social situation.

Fashion as a Sign System

Fashion is a language of signs, symbols and iconography that non-verbally communicate meanings about individuals and groups. Fashion in all its forms from a tattooed and pierced navel, to the newest hairstyle, is the best form of iconography we have to express individual identity. It enables us to make ourselves understood with rapid comprehension by the onlooker.

Fashion as a Barometer of Cultural Changes

How we perceive the beauty or ugliness of our bodies is dependant on cultural attitudes to physiognomy. The accepted beautiful female form that Rubens painted is subliminally undesirable nowadays, if we are to be thought beautiful in a way that the majority accepts in the 21st century.

Today an inability to refashion and reshape our bodies whilst constantly monitoring the cultural ideal leaves us failing the fashion test. Those that pass the fashion test invariably spend their lives absorbed in a circle of diet, exercise, cosmetic surgery and other regimes. This includes the rigors of shopping in search of the ultimate garb.

The Need for Tribal Belonging

Our reluctance to give ourselves a regular makeover through diet, exercise, and consistently conscious use of specific dress styles infers that we have the personality flaws of a weak willed human. We become in the eyes of fashion aficionados somewhat inadequate and imperfect in the fashion stakes. Thus we strive to keep a culturally satisfying appearance so that we feel better, whereas in fact we are striving to stay in the tribe, whatever type of tribe that may be.

Group affiliation is our prime concern with regard to fashion. As long as some group similarity is identified within the group, our personal fashion whether current or dated can belong to any tribe. It is the sense of belonging marked by how we fashion ourselves that gives us the tribal connection.

Roles

An innate characteristic of human beings is the desire to strive for differentiation. The removal of Sumptuary Laws and rigid dress codes has enabled the individual to use fashion as a means to identify clearly the many different roles that a person plays in any one day.

Sociologists borrowed the word ‘role’ from the theatre because, like actors

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Covid-19 Update

New Zealand is going into a Covid-19 Lockdown. It is expected to last 4 weeks. All non essential businesses must close. We are behind our country’s decision to do this, so that we, as a nation, can attempt to stay ahead of the curve and be safe. From 1pm on Tuesday, 24 March, The Gift Loft will not be processing orders, until after the Lockdown finishes. This will effect our Easter orders – we will not be able to send Easter gifts out for Easter. We apologise for any inconvenience, during these very uncertain times. Stay safe and we hope you will return to order away, once we return (any order made, during this Lockdown time, will be processed and sent, once we return). Best wishes, from The Gift Loft team.

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Officers save nuptials after porch pirates steal wedding dress

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    KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) — A newly-married couple is thanking the Kansas City Police Department after recovering the bride’s stolen wedding dress from porch pirates.

According to police, Jaycee and Patrick McIntosh moved up their wedding day to March 20 so it could take place before the citywide stay-at-home order would happen.

The day before the wedding, the bride’s dress arrived at her Northland home, but a woman the stole the package from McIntosh’s porch.

McIntosh called officers and showed them security video of the thief. The police searched the area and found the suspects and their vehicle at a shopping center in the 5500 block of Chouteau Drive.

When officers approached the suspect vehicle, then could see the stolen package, which had been opened revealing the wedding dress. Working with store employees, police were able to identify the three passengers of the vehicle, one of whom had taking the package off of the bride’s porch.

The three women were arrested, and authorities said all three were convicted felons with warrants. Officers also noted they found methamphetamine, drug paraphernalia and a gun in the suspect’s vehicle.

The police were able to immediately return the dress to the Jaycee, and she and Patrick were able to have their small ceremony the following day.

In addition to the stolen dress, Jaycee said that she was unable to get her hair and makeup done for the ceremony since the salon she had planned to use closed, the couple could not go out for a fancy wedding dinner and had to settle for drive-thru chicken and had to cancel their 10-day elopement trip to Costa Rica.

Still, Jaycee told KCTV5 News that she still is ecstatic at the end of it all.

“It was an emotional week and it ended in a good story, good weather and with the love of my life.”

Please note: This content carries a strict local market embargo. If you share the same market as the contributor of this article, you may not use it on any platform.

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The State of Fashion 2017

Fashion is one of the past decade’s rare economic success stories. Over that period, the industry has grown at 5.5 percent annually, according to the McKinsey Global Fashion Index, to now be worth an estimated $2.4 trillion. In fact, not only does it touch everyone, but it would be the world’s seventh-largest economy if ranked alongside individual countries’ GDP.

Yet 2016 was one of the industry’s toughest years. Terrorist attacks in France, the Brexit vote in the United Kingdom, and the volatility of the Chinese stock market have created shocks to the global economy. At the same time, consumers have become more demanding, more discerning, and less predictable in their purchasing behavior, which is being radically reshaped by new technologies. It’s against this backdrop that McKinsey has teamed with the Business of Fashion to shine a light on the fragmented, complex ecosystem that underpins this giant global industry.

2016: A year to forget

Our first The State of Fashion report (PDF–8MB) finds that it’s not only external shock waves that have roiled the industry. Companies have also been looking inward, implementing changes to the core operations that are reshaping the entire fashion system, from shortening the length of the fashion cycle to integrating sustainable innovation into the core product-design and manufacturing processes. Perhaps unsurprisingly, 67 percent of executives said conditions for the fashion industry have worsened over the past 12 months.

This fact is clearly borne out in the industry’s financial performance. Sales growth seems set to slow to a mere 2 or, at most, 3 percent by the close of 2016, with stagnating profit margins. Speculation and uncertainty over the repercussions of the US election outcome could further dampen consumer sentiment and affect sales. This is in stark contrast to the fashion industry’s performance over the previous decade, which saw the industry expand at 5.5 percent annually.

Yet this sluggish overall growth masks some big winners: affordable luxury, value, and athletic wear.

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With respect to sales growth, the affordable-luxury and value sectors have outperformed all other segments by one to one-and-a-half percentage points. This is consistent with their compound annual growth rate (CAGR) over the past three years, which has been 9 percent for affordable luxury and 6 percent for value, the highest of any segment since 2013.

Affordable-luxury players benefited from consumers trading down from luxury, particularly among Chinese consumers. However, their profit margins are expected to decline, especially after 2016, because of a pricing-arbitrage disadvantage across geographies and fluctuating foreign-exchange rates.

The value segment continued to grow in 2016, particularly as a consequence of large global players expanding geographically. With its clearly defined value proposition, the value segment has been taking share from discount this year.

In 2016, the 8.0 to 8.5 percent growth for athletic wear is more than double

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Military Women “Firsts” and their History

Military Women “Firsts” and their History
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Military Women “Firsts”


Women in the U.S. military have always had a “tough row to hoe” and we owe a lot to those women who literally broke ground, opened doors, and made the choice of a military career easier for those who followed. Beginning with the early pioneers, who were almost never recognized, here are some of the military women of achievement and their accomplishments. Please bear in mind that the terms WAC – Women’s Army Corps – WAVE – Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service - WAF – Women in the Air Force – and so on, are used in the context of the times. We were called by those acronyms from the 1940s until the separate women’s branches were eliminated in the mid 1970s.

The First to Receive Pensions for Military Service

Contrary to slanted opinions about women there is a long historical precedent for women in some form of warfare – though not always in a uniform. For the early pioneer women “home defense” was as routine as drawing well water. And in the Revolutionary decade the first known woman to serve was awarded the first pension for her service.
Margaret Corbin fought with her husband at Fort Washington and in 1779 Congress voted her a disability pension of one half a soldiers pay and one suit of clothes or the equivalent in cash.

Years later, another Revolutionary heroine, Deborah Samson, was granted a pension by the Massachussettes legislature in 1804 and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania awarded Mary Ludwig Hays McCauley a pension in 1822 of forty dollars a year “for services rendered” during the war.

During the Mexican War, Elizabeth C. Newcume, in male attire, was mustered into military service at Fort Leavenworth in September 1847. She served ten months and spent time fighting indians at Dodge City until her sex was discovered and she was discharged. It took a private act of congress to pay Elizabeth Newcume who received a bounty land warrant for 160 acres and full payment for ten months service, plus three months extra pay, as provided in the 5th section of the act of 19 July 1848.

The First to Receive Medals

The first, and only, woman to receive The Medal of Honor was Dr. Mary E. Walker, a contract surgeon during the Civil War.

The first woman to receive The Purple Heart was Annie G. Fox while serving at Hickam Field during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Dec 7 1941.

The first woman to receive The Bronze Star was 1Lt Cordelia E. Cook, Army Nurse Corps, during WWII in Italy. Lt Cook was also awarded The Purple Heart, becoming the first woman to receive two awards.

Lt Edith Greenwood was awarded The Soldiers Medal in 1943 for heroism during a fire at a military hospital in Yuma Arizona – the first woman to receive this award.

The first woman to receive The Air Medal

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[We buy: closeouts, people going out of business, liquidations, mixed lots, stuff no one else wants]

 
It is a warehouse and unless you are an experienced buyer — it can be very overwhelming – but if you know what you are doing and are willing to dig/get dirty you will be in heaven! Wholesale only (no retail customers).

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10 Fashion Icons and the Trends They Made Famous

While the fashion industry continues to introduce us to new styles every season, the industry would not be where it is today without the help of influential fashion icons. Nowadays, celebrities are able to take pictures of their outfit and share it with friends, family, and fans on social media. However, many of the women who invented these iconic styles didn’t have the same influential opportunities, so the fact that we still consider them fashion icons means they must have known what they were doing!

Although today’s celebrities are criticized for what they wear on the red carpet, to the grocery store, and out to dinner, this wasn’t the case for previous generations of stars. Instead, these celebrities whatever they wanted, which is why so many unique trends surfaced during this time. The following 10 fashion icons not only had successful careers, but they also used their keen fashion senses to catapult them into stardom. Here are some of the most influential fashionistas and the trends they made famous:

1. Audrey Hepburn: The Little Black Dress

Some could argue that Audrey Hepburn is the reason for fashion’s obsession with the Little Black Dress. Her classic Holly Golightly look from Breakfast at Tiffany’s is one of the most iconic ‘Old Hollywood’ photos out there. The simple Givenchy column gown, 3-strand pearl necklace, large tortoiseshell sunglasses, sleek updo, diamond earrings, and long cigarette holder will forever be known as an Audrey Hepburn-inspired look!

2. Diana Ross: Maximalist

Although Diana Ross’ style changed over the course of her career, Motown would not be what it is today without her influence. From extravagant wigs to embellished gowns, Diana shed a positive light on the term ‘diva’ and blurred the line between costume and everyday wear.

3. Elizabeth Taylor: Queen of Diamonds

Elizabeth Taylor’s fashion sense can only be described as fearless. She gave off a hint of glamour everywhere she went with her plunging necklines, fur wraps, feather boas, and eye-catching headpieces that would likely be considered over-the-top next to today’s styles. Still, Elizabeth Taylor’s love for glitz and glam resonated with her at all times, and her impact on the fashion industry is still evident.

4. Grace Kelly: The Preppy Princess

Jon Pardi Postpones May Wedding to Summer Duncan

The ongoing spread of the coronavirus has caused Jon Pardi to postpone his May wedding to Summer Duncan.

In an announcement posted Tuesday (March 31) on Pardi’s fiancée’s Instagram page, the couple said they could just not risk the health of their wedding attendees.

“Somewhat of a relief not having to stress every day with the news of the virus and whether or not it passes by the end of May,” Duncan wrote. “We would be selfish to keep our wedding date and put our guests at risk. To all the other brides out there (and wedding vendors) it’s gonna be one hell of a busy fall!! Haha.”

The message was posted alongside a black and white picture of the night Pardi proposed to his love last fall during a stop on his Heartache Medication tour in Nashville.

“Due to the uncertainty of the COVID-19, we have decided to postpone our May wedding,” a message on the picture of the couple, who began dating in early 2017, read. “Hope everyone is staying safe out there in this crazy time. Prayers and well wishes to all.”

In another Instagram post, Duncan said that she feels the same as rest of us … she can’t wait for the day she can say goodbye to COVID-19.

“But really…. bye Covid,” she wrote. “Time for you to kick rocks.”

It’s a sad turn of events for a country artist that was having quite a year, both professionally and personally.. Earlier this month, the Platinum-selling, double ACM Album of the Year nominee released his new single “Ain’t Always the Cowboy” to radio, serving as his second highest streamed song off his critically-acclaimed album Heartache Medication.

Watch: Jon Pardi Opens Up About His Fiancee Summer: 

See 50 Great Modern Songs for Country Traditionalists: 

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