Monday, July 1, 2013
Welcome to Hell: MKE Fashion District
Yes, I realize that this gathering of information to make a totally unimportant and entirely subjective statement is bogus.
But even as someone who lives in this apparently abhorrent Fashion Hell, I must ask, How can you prove that?
It's just like a tabloid cover, "Such and Such is the Sexiest Malebot on Earth". How do we come to this conclusion? Do we conduct a complicated series of rigorous and expensive experiments to cull the candidates for Hottest Malebot?
I like to imagine a council of elders deliberating the ratio of visible 'Taco Meat' to 'Pant Cupping' to determine the best elected Highlander of Sexing. (There can only be one you know...)
The organizations responsible for this highly scientific deduction claim to have used the number of "high end retail stores" and enrollment in fashion programs as their measuring stick.
However, I think the measuring stick is far more interesting than the Smelly Kid of Fashion claim.
This funny study says that high end equates only to expense.
That style directly relates to money.
The more money you have, the better you look.
Using this math, we can also prove that expensive means tasteful. Anyone remember that hideously racist "primitive candle stick holder" that Anthropologie was pitching for $398.00?
It is strange to be the a citizen eeking out existence in the Frump Dump of The Nation, yet you can't go a weekend without an invite to a fashion show, or some excellently creative group is opening a boutique that offers something of quality off the beaten path, or a local designer is releasing a new product and most recently, the expansion of Milwaukee's Fashion District.
New banners are flying, inching out of their designated Third Ward boundaries: popping up on Water Street with the intention to migrate to Milwaukee Street and Wisconsin Avenue. Plans for new storefronts are also in the works.
So what does this mean?
Will Milwaukee eventually escape is penniless miserable fashion fate? Will Nordstrom (2015) bestowing designer selections upon us be our salvation?
No. Probably not. And it doesn't matter.
It doesn't matter because pricey options do not automatically translate to stylish solutions-- just as expensive paint in the hands of an sloppy artist doesn't guarantee a masterpiece.
Fashion is what you buy. Style is what you do with it.
Third Coast style isn't about the doubloons-- it's about making a statement by making it work.
And the expansion of our Fashion District is exciting not because of its luxury options, but because it means more opportunities for Milwaukee's creative class to push, express, kick some ass and break the rules.
Which is always good news for our Fair City--
For any city.
Milwaukee, I think you look really nice today.
And you too, muffin.
Much Love from your favorite Fashion Wasteland,