the crisis of fashion journalism in australia

This sorry piece in the Sydney Morning Herald pretty such sums up the state of 95% of fashion reporting in this country (100% of TV reporting, in fact). Only last week I was bemoaning to a colleague how the reports from the shows tend to be along the lines of, ‘Oh, look at this funny hat’, and there it is. I long for the days when Jane de Teliga, Maggie Alderson and Patty Huntington used to report for the Herald. I could go on and on – what about that 20-something socialite that ‘wrote’ the fashion section for the Sunday Telegraph while the wonderful Melissa Hoyer was on leave? The poor love confused the Australian designer Collette Dinnigan with Colette, the store in Paris. ‘Nuff said.

2 responses to the crisis of fashion journalism in australia

  1. nitamaross says:

    I’m glad you sent me the link to your blog again! I’m gonna have to work backwards.Maybe it’s a post-modern malaise making people apathetic about meaningful expression and frightened of bad critique. Overwhelmed by possibilities and not wanting to take responsibility for misinterpretation?There is a definite lack of integrity in Australian fashion journalism at the moment, though I couldn’t say how it measures up with fashion journalism elsewhere. After starting my thesis a few years ago it seemed much of a muchness, and i let the reading in that area slide.I still do follow the press on ‘eco’/’sustainable’/’green’ fashion quite closely, and that definitely needs help. I think it’s been such a struggle to get that practice of fashioning to the current stage of recognition, that sympathetic writers are so scared to be critical in case they make the challenge even more difficult for new designers.It seems like this particular mode of ‘fashioning’ elicits either bile or fluffy pony-shaped clouds from the media. But that’s what you get when trying to overcome stereotypes in an industry that thrives on stereotypes and fast changing trends.The handful of publications coming out at the moment is a relief, i’m lookink forward to reading Fletcher’s book in more depth. I could go on about my gripe with ‘green is the new black’ (the catch-phrase not the book, which is ok) but i might save that for another day.Happy Mardi Gras Mate đŸ˜‰

  2. Nita, I wanted to discuss some of the articles arising from the ‘eco-bits’ at New York and London fashion weeks for the reasons you mention – very little criticism, and generally somewhat simplistic views of what is ‘good’/’sustainable’/etc. As for the futurefashion thing in NYC, I can’t help being cynical about it. The top houses (Calvin Klein, Givenchy, Ralph Lauren, Versace, etc.) produced one ‘eco’-dress each. I’m sure any of the designers involved, if interviewed, also waffled about their passion for these issues (and my guess is that the focus was, as usual, almost entirely on the materials used). And then it was business as normal, everyone having done their good deed; the shows in New York, Milan, London and Paris went as they have for decades. And the timber catwalk was so cliched it hurt. I guess it brought some publicity for the issues, but… I don’t know. By the way, thank you for the term ‘trashion’- whilst it applies to much of conventional fashion, too many eco-rags take it as their own. I do hope that within five years, Fletcher’s book is compulsory reading in every fashion course in the world. As for there seeming to be ever more fashion courses with ever more students… Gotta go, thank you for the comment! x

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