Consumerist fashion is all about what is right on trend, right for uniform mass-manufacture and ultimately right for the figures on a balance sheet. Lost in the mix are a garment’s finesse, fit, appropriateness; and the space to nurture individuality, skills and confidence in a wearer to recognise and revel in the ‘rightness’ of a particular piece.
Finding the right partnership between wearer and garment is the difference between using a piece time and again or throwing it away. Each partnership, like each person, is different. Matching one with the other and being open to the almost limitless variety of possibilities this enables, underscores fashion system diversity.
“This shawl is woven by a very small Irish weaving company. They actually design in Ireland but they produce them in Germany – but they do say hand woven in Ireland on it (laughter) but they’re very much Irish based. It’s one hundred percent pure wool and I’ve had it for over ten years. And I honestly wear it almost every single day, I’m not joking. I wear it all the time. And I wear it going out, I wear it in, I lend it to people in the house. I don’t really give it to anyone to bring away. But I give it to people to stay warm when they’re visiting or if they need it. And it still looks completely almost the same as it did the first day I got it – I didn’t actually get it, my parents gave it to a boyfriend of mine at the time and when we split up I took it (laughter).”
Dublin - April 2012
Photograph by Des Moriarty