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It seems everything: minimalism is no longer relevant

A thin black dress on straps over a white T-shirt and the same white sneakers - this image will certainly go down in the history of fashion as a description of the minimalism of the second decade of the XXI century, in which we exist now. But is this concept of “clothes - nothing, personality - everything” linger with us for long?

As soon as the ascetic moods overcame the fashion literally a few years ago, many began confidently and in full voice to sum up: the generation who were born in the 80s was desperate consumerists and shopaholics, but the next generation of millenials before our eyes grows indifferent to endless disguises and all these tricky tricks that the fashion industry has been working on us for the last couple of decades. The minimalism of the 21st century even tried to invent pioneers: they say, who was the first to lay such a universal, clear and at the same time trend lying on the surface? And designer brands, with the possible exception of Helmut Lang, Céline and the “sacred cow” of Prada, were predicted to die soon,for they are still subject to idle seasonal renewal, while the world is already moving towards, like Mark Zuckerberg, to put on the same gray T-shirts and jeans and concentrate on work.

Street style 2017

Street style 2017

But among the accolades of minimalism there were also those whose authors are still familiar with the history of fashion and timidly ask themselves: what if minimalism is just another “passing” trend? And if you take a quick look at what happened to fashion during the 20th century, it turns out that this is true: the trend for everything simplified, bland, emphatically utilitarian was a kind of buffer pillow among the brightest and loudest screams of the last hundred years. Before the heyday of democratic brands and general insanity in the “colors of the year” and “season styles” in the 2000s, there was minimalism in the 90s, when Brad Pitt with Gwyneth Paltrow and Kate Moss and Johnny Depp wore worse clothes on the red carpet than your staircase - to work. Then, after the collapse of the stock market and the ensuing economic crisis to emphasize its wealth was a move, and the production of designer clothes itself ceased to be such a profitable event.The nihilism of the 90s with nightie dresses and worn shirts in a cage was like a shock wave generated by the idle 80s - a time of pompous screaming abundance in fashion, which many people still consider the most tasteless epoch. Then, in the 80s, as well as in the 2000s, the fashion broadcast the same message: buy and dress up to be beautiful and happy. And people believed and bought: five pairs of jeans of the same style, dozens of leather belts “for one time”, cosmetics of all colors of the rainbow and cheap jewelry almost as packs (then it was called “sets”).

Brad Pitt and Gwyneth Paltrow, 90s

Kate Moss and Johnny Depp, 90s

Britney Spears, 2000s

Jennifer Lopez, 2000s

The period of a pause called “minimalism” was also in the 60s with the transition to new technological materials and the cult of the uniform (work, home, school, for travel and for everyone in the world hobby). Then the unpretentious styles were again replaced by theatrical luxury in the next decade, in the 70s, with the arrival of Yves Saint Laurent and the expansion of bourgeois chic, including examples of the status patterns of the conservative 50s. And still it is impossible to say that minimalism comes from the 60s, because it is not even a trend, but a form of natural protest against the culture of consumption and admiration for material values ​​that swells like a bud in the spring.Minimalism made itself felt in the 40s with the advent of war and general mobilization, and in the 20s with the active expansion of the male style to the female wardrobe. This style appeared, “polished” the avant-garde achievements of fashion at that moment, and then disappeared again or even, better to say, was hushed up under the onslaught of the following stylistic innovations.

Jane Birkin and Serge Gainsbourg, 60s

Justin de Villeneuve and Twiggy, 60s

It is surprising that in the fashion in general in the active lexicon there is the word “minimalism” and there is no word “maximalism”, which best characterizes the currents in the fashion that are opposite to minimalism. Maximalism is about the 20s' sibaric chic with feathers and sequins, and about Elsa Schiaparelli's surrealism in the 30s, which was always considered the antipode of Coco Chanel's utilitarian rigor (although today Chanel and minimalism are no longer close to each other), and about new look Dior, and about gold buttons on leopard jackets from the 80s. In fact, in any decade you can find both kitsch and asceticism, and if you also know the history, you can thoroughly explain the origin of both. And the reason why minimalism every ten to fifteen years manages to sink into oblivion is, in fact, an explanation of the very existence of fashion as an industry: after a lull, there is again an acute lack of entertainment and new heroes who are overthrowing the old canons.After all, fashion is the same fair of pleasures as the same TV and the Internet, where you can hide from unsolved global problems, take a breath from domestic worries and for a second seriously believe that your main problem for today is the lack of suitable shoes to dress . And in this, shopaholics born in the 80s are not at all alone, and trying to “cure” them of fashionable addictions with the help of snobbish minimalism is at least short-sighted and unfair.

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