#fashionupward: Peasant Blouses, AI, and The Next Big Retail Capital

This was first published on my newsletter, Fashion Upward. Every week, I round up articles to help fashion’s designers, entrepreneurs, and tastemakers think, shop, and make better.

Jane Russell in The Outlaw. Photo: Sunset Boulevard/Getty Images

1. What Makes the Peasant Blouse ‘Peasant’?

What’s the story behind peasant blouses? A look back by fashion historian Sonya Abrego.

Source: Man Repeller

2. Has Social Media Ruined Fashion?

An oldie (because 3 months is ancient in social media land, right?) but a topic that I’m thinking more and more about. We’ve, at this point, started to approach a state in fashion where the highs come so often and so fast in the form of likes that we’ve become somewhat dulled to the things that would’ve been euphoric 5 years ago. So where does that leave us? Ready and open for the next fresh thing to sweep us off our feet; I have a feeling that this time, it’s something beyond “more”.

So, yeah, the high has worn off, but it will come back. It always does.
Source: Flickr user Barney Bishop

3. AI Can Make Us All Dress Better. So Why Isn’t The Fashion Industry Using It More?

Fashion, especially in the luxury sector, has typically been slow to adopt new technology apart from surface-level experiments, even though there’s so much potential here to do so many things that will improve not only how we live and shop, but how fashion is produced. AI is one of the things that can really profoundly change the entire industry (think: chatbots, custom content, crowdsourced collections, shopping algorithms), and this is a really great overview of how things are shaping up right now (hint: we’re kinda sorta getting there).

Source: @voguearabia/Instagram

4. Dubai is Quickly and Quietly Becoming the World’s Next Big Retail Capital

As geography becomes less and less important in the retail landscape due to the increasing prevalence of ecommerce, we’ve started to forget that there are still whole new worlds of brick and mortar that are thriving and actually really kind of exciting. The Middle East is also one of the world’s fastest growing ecommerce markets too.

5. Over/With

A short piece by Seth Godin on finding your “with”, instead of hiding “under”. Super relevant read from a marketing perspective on collaboration, partnership, and co-creation as being the way of the future everywhere. We’ve definitely been seeing this in fashion, and it’s on its way in becoming the new normal.

Source: Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

6. A WOC Walked In Every Single Show At Fashion Week & It’s About Damn Time

In 2017 we finally got there. Every single runway show at New York Fashion Week included at least one model of colour. I mean, yes, it’s been a long time coming but the timing feels right (because sometimes we really need to be pushed into action after reaching a breaking point — and this is one of the aftereffects of the entire world, fashion included, being shaken up by the political upheaval happening right now).

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