The change of season is always exciting for fashionistas who can’t wait to see photos from fashion week and for new colors and textures to take over racks.
Fashion bloggers are constantly posting their designer outfits that garner tens of thousands of likes on Instagram. Some of these bloggers have millions of followers, just as many if not more than Vogue.
Items featured in Vogue may not be the most suitable for a college student who looks for comfort and style, but at least the publication doesn’t put photos of thousand dollar shoes all over social media.
Bloggers however, constantly update their followers about their new Céline purse, Chanel shoes and Valentino dress. As if name brands aren’t already everywhere, they are even popping into familiar store names such as Target and H&M.;
This season, H&M; collaborated with Alexander Wang for a collection that had shoppers camping outside stores, eagerly awaiting the launch of affordable designer items they could brag about to friends.
On the official launch date, #alexanderwangxhm was trending and the website crashed as people tried to shop the line without the crowd.
Why all the buzz for a clothing line that features a sporty style that is not the usual aesthetic for both H&M; and Wang?
Some people may have followed the athletic trend with joggers being the new fall trend, skirts of neoprene or scuba material and athletic jackets paired with boxy tops.
Items in this collaboration had an athletic look and most of them had the logo WANG printed across them. One of the items available was a pair of boxing gloves and a miniature key chain version with the initials AW on them.
A few items in the collection: shoes, dresses and sports bras that did not have the designer’s name stamped on them. Other items in the collection that were logo-free were higher in the price range, such as the leather pants going for $350.
After the frenzy of rushing to buy sweatshirts and leggings with WANG or AW all over, the H&M; website had a few items from the collection left in stock. The leather pants were not instantly snatched up even though it was also part of the much-anticipated collection.
Made of leather and in the currently trending jogger style, the pants are a better bang for the buck than the leggings. Leather pants would even look more stylish than gray leggings, but the pants lack one important factor, branding.
Owning an item from the collection might be cool, but it would be even cooler if everyone knew it was branded. In terms of bragging rights on social media, that is.
When an Internet personality posts a photo of a designer item, the comments are usually of admiration or envy.
If everyone could post a photo that told their followers, “This is an Alexander Wang t-shirt” it might make them feel more like a fashion icon who gets to wear new clothes everyday.
Now that you spent $50 on a top, maybe it’s time to drop your savings on that luxurious Rocco satchel by Alexander Wang.
Designer collaborations get a lot of hype, but chances are most people won’t be rushing to spend hundreds on the real deal. If they’re not running to grab the $300 shoes at H&M;, they’re probably not so keen on spending twice that amount at a department store.
This latest designer and store collaboration might be all the buzz around social media right now, but a scuba WANG top is no iconic Chanel bag.
Some people can justify spending hundreds or thousands on fashion and accessories but being decked out in luxury brands does not necessarily mean being stylish.
As Instagram user delarastudio said in a comment on fashion blogger Chiara Ferragni’s post, “You just wear anything as long as they pay you, therefore you cannot be considered a style icon or reference, just a mannequin.”
By purchasing and wearing the most talked about clothing items just to use an extra hash tag on that #OOTD post, you are becoming a mannequin.
Wearing something without a brand name tagged on it does not make you any less stylish.