​a short philosophy of fashion in 35 quotes

What clothes we choose every morning can change the way we feel, the way we think, even how the world opens up and offers adventures to us. So, cobbled together out of 35 quotes from all sorts of stylish thinkers, here is a short philosophy of fashion...

by Dean Kissick
02 June 2015, 12:20pm

"I would like to say to people: open your eyes and find beauty where you normally don't expect it." Jean Paul Gaultier

"Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society." Mark Twain

"I find beauty in the grotesque, like most artists." Alexander McQueen

"You have a more interesting life if you wear impressive clothes." Vivienne Westwood

"You've got fat mothers with their bags of chips sitting in front of the television and saying thin models are ugly. Fashion is about dreams and illusions." Karl Lagerfeld

Photography Juergen Teller, All Clothing Vivienne Wetwood, Styling Vivienne Westwood. [The Royalty Issue, No. 318 Spring 2012]

"A little bad taste is like a nice splash of paprika. We all need a splash of bad taste - it's hearty, it's healthy, it's physical. I think we could use more of it. No taste is what I'm against." Diana Vreeland

"You shouldn't ask 'why do you wear a hat?' What you really should be asking is 'why are you not?'" John Galliano

"People ask why I do monochromatic clothes; the reason is because I'm thinking in proportion to the world. In this room, your head is going to look so much more interesting if it's on a monochromatic column. Whereas I think people think of outfits and gets a little too fussy, a little too detailed. I'm always thinking of the line of a person standing with their head in a room and I always feel like a stalk, or a stem, or a pillar is nicer. I always think of everything architecturally." Rick Owens

"When I come home I actually take off all my clothes, and I wear no clothes until I leave. I eat naked. I do everything completely naked." Tom Ford

Photography Terry Richardson, All Clothing Tom Ford, Styling Vivienne Westwood. [The Man and Beast Issue, No. 211 July 2001]

"For something to be beautiful it doesn't have to be pretty." Rei Kawakubo

"Where beauty is worshipped for beauty's sake as a goddess, independent of and superior to morality and philosophy, the most horrible putrefaction is apt to set in. The lives of the aesthetes are the far from edifying commentary on the religion of beauty." Aldous Huxley

"We live in a dark and romantic and quite tragic world." Karl Lagerfeld

Photography Karl Lagerfeld, [The Royalty Issue, No. 318 Spring 2012]

"What I find most interesting in fashion is that it has to reflect our time. You have to witness your own moment." Nicolas Ghesquière

"To be modern is to tear the soul out of every thing." Yohji Yamamoto

"I always find beauty in things that are odd and imperfect - they are much more interesting." Marc Jacobs

"I think women should be seductive, not triste. There's enough sadness in life now without making women look sad, too." Azzedine Alaïa

Photography Sølve Sundsbø, Fashion Director Charlotte Stockdale [The Collectors Issue, No. 328 Winter 2013]

"Fashion is only the attempt to realise art in living forms and social intercourse." Sir Francis Bacon

"Vain trifles as they seem, clothes have, they say, more important offices than to merely keep us warm. They change our view of the world and the world's view of us." Virginia Woolf

"Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening." Coco Chanel

Photography Josh Olins, Styling Cathy Kasterine. Dress and cap Victoria Beckham. [The Whatever The Weather Issue, no. 317, Pre-Spring 2012]

"I don't want to be seen smiling, having fun, or eating." Victoria Beckham

"What I find frustrating, disappointing and fucking depressing about the fashion 'industry' nowadays is the general sense of apology and - worse - apathy that I see and feel across the fashion capitals. Nobody seems to believe in fashion now, especially not those who are supposed to love it the most. 'We' are so bored by the un-inspired clothes we are presented with - that focus shifts to shallow ideas of political expression: fleeting, ephemeral gestures towards feminism, issues of gender, even its association with art and artists; fashion, in its own lack of self-belief and insecurity, trying to gain some validation and some semblance of credibility." Edward Meadham

"The future, for me, is romantic, I don't understand people who say the past is romantic. Romantic, for me, is something you don't know yet, something you can dream about, something unknown and mystical. That I find fascinating." Raf Simons

Photography Willy Vanderperre, Styling Olivier Rizzo. All clothing Raf Simons. [The Lights, Camera, Action Issue, No. 319, Summer 2012]

"Why not touch things that we hate and turn them upside down and inside out?" Alber Elbaz

"In a machine age, dressmaking is one of the last refuges of the human, the personal, the inimitable." Christian Dior

"Fashion is about dreaming and making other people dream." Donatella Versace

"Do I dream very much? Do I dream predominantly about fashion? No. I dream much more about cats." Grace Coddington

Photography Arthur Elgort, Styling Stella Greenspan. Coat Céline. [The Wise Up Issue, No. 322, Winter 2012] 

"A couturier must be an architect for design, a sculptor for shape, a painter for color, a musician for harmony, and a philosopher for temperance." Cristobal Balenciaga

"Colour disturbs people. I am confident in black, not in light. This dark side of life is attractive to me forever and from the beginning. I am a lazy designer when it comes to color." Yohji Yamamoto

"Visiting my mind is like visiting the Hermès factory. Shit is real." Kanye West

Photography Fabien Montique, Styling Rushka Bergman. All jewellery Erickson Beamon. [The Back To The Future Issue, No. 310, Winter 2010] 

"I love black lingerie and white shoes, and I love knives." Carine Roitfeld

"For me, darkness is something very beautiful… Black is always elegant. It is the most complete color in the whole world, made of all the colours in the palette." Riccardo Tisci

"I don't even know what my natural color is. Natural? What is natural? What is that? I do not believe in totally natural for women. For me, natural has something to do with vegetables." Donatella Versace

"What you wear is how you present yourself to the world, especially today when human contacts go so fast. Fashion is instant language." Miuccia Prada

Miuccia Prada, Photography Francesco Vezzoli. [The Pain and Pleasure Issue, No. 289, April 2008]

"I like black, because for me it is a very happy color." Azzedine Alaïa

"I've always said fashion is like roast chicken: You don't have to think about it to know it's delicious." Alber Elbaz

Alexander McQueen
Christian Dior
Grace Coddington
Karl Lagerfeld
Tom Ford
Edward Meadham
marc jacobs
Vivienne Westwood
John Galliano
Jean Paul Gaultier
Coco Chanel
Dean Kissick
Raf Simons
Rei Kawakubo
Yohji Yamamoto
Mark Twain
Azzedine Alaia
Diana Vreeland
alber elbaz
nicolas ghesqui?re
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