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  • Writer's pictureMichaela A de Guire

Fashion vs Style

Updated: Apr 16, 2023

Your clothes work for you. They tell people what to expect, they offer first impressions and so much more. If you care for them they will take great care of you. To fully understand fashion and style we must first understand clothes. Their use, purpose, etc.

I have always said that if you take care of your clothes they will take care of you. Clothes, however, will not take care of you like people do. They do not love you, express emotions, or hold you as a person can, although a good sweater can feel like a warm hug when you need one and no one is around.

However, they do take care of you in other ways. Such as offering a grand first impression, keeping you cool or warm, covering your body, offering protection from the elements, etc. Clothes are designed for both appearance and function. In my opinion both are necessary. It would be ridiculous to wear something for appearances only, and if it doesn’t look at least tasteful you will not see me wearing something for function only.

Even on the homestead (because it is not a farm where one makes money, but rather focuses on food for the family) you will find me wearing things that I feel comfortable in, both in appearance and function. Such as rain boots in solid navy or navy with sage green and pink hens printed across them, a typical red flannel jacket, an olive green stocking hat or a straw hat, working gloves and jeans or a sundress, depending on what day it is. These items protect me from the elements, function for the weather and animals, insects, etc. They offer me comfort and ease of mind. This is what clothes should do for you.

I have said this in the past and it still holds true, it is in reference to modesty, to style, to you as an individual, but can also be in reference to how you wear your clothes too…

“It is not just about dressing, it goes deeper than that.” -Michaela de Guire

Clothes offer protection, comfort in mind, soul, and body. Clothes function for the physical environment. Fashion is the fashion designer's ideas and imaginations brought to life through clothes. Fashion is the fashion designer's dreams brought to the physical world. Style is opinions. Style is your ideas, imaginations, and emotions expressed through the clothes the fashion designers have offered to you.

Let’s break this down a little more. Fashion is the designer's imagination. It is what is inside the fashion designers mind. It is the fashion designer expressing their deepest emotions and bringing them to life. It is not you because you are not beside the designer telling them how it is you want the sleeve to drape or how long the hem should be. These, my darling, are the fashion designers' decisions to make.

Fashion is said to be a form of self expression. However, it is not a form of your personal self expression, but rather the fashion designers self expression. Your self expression comes when you are the one putting the fashion, the clothes, together to create your own style. Therefore, it is style that is a form of your self expression.

Thus, style is when you use what the fashion designers have offered to you, to create what you believe (deep inside) as your personality through clothes and the way in which you wear them. And, because God has created each one of us uniquely, no two people are alike, you, my darling, can wear the exact same dress as another, but neither of you will look alike because your personality is completely different from the others. Thus, the way in which you wear the dress is different.

In my blog post Is style really not that hard? it says,

”Fashion is simply what the fashion designers create from the depths of their imaginations. Fashion has to do with global trends, fads, which is an intense and widely shared enthusiasm for something that is usually short lived, and of course, the red carpet. Fashion is just clothes in the media.” -Michaela de Guire

I believe this is 100% correct. Fashion is clothes in the media. We may think we have to follow a trend or a fad because we see it on the runway, a celebrity wearing it, and then our neighbor. But that is where style comes into play, more on this in a bit.

The fashion designers create clothes from the depths of their imaginations for us, the people, to use, wear, and play with. To put to use our own imaginations, personalities, and desires. To play with our clothes and wear them in new and unexpected ways. Thus, style is you playing everyday with all you have. Style is how you interpret what the fashion designers gave you. How you put together the clothes, how you wear them.

Thus, my darling, what are you going to play with today? What are you going to pair together to create the unexpected? It certainly does not have to be unexpected to someone else, just to yourself. We all think differently, we all see differently, and thus, how you pair something together might have been done in the past by one, but completely new to you and vice versa.

When I am on the homestead I wear less glamorous clothes, but the function is just the same as when I wear clothes to Mass, day outings, babysitting, business meetings, etc. The function is just the same, it simply shifts from one “undertaking” to the next. No two are very much alike, and thus each “undertaking” requires something else. One may need lots of pockets, another may need a skirt or dress, while the other might work best with pants or shorts.

As you probably know or perhaps have figured out thus far, fashion fades, it comes and goes much like the tide on a beach. Style is yours, it's part of your identity, it doesn’t come in and go when it pleases because you control it. Style is you, it is your personality expressed through your attire, your clothes, accessories, shoes, etc. Style is you. Fashion is the designers. And, clothes are tools.

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