2016: The year fashion finally grew up
Date: December 28 2016
At times, fashion can feel like the Gigi Hadid
show. That is, when it’s not feeling like the Kendall Jenner
show. Thanks to effervescent and relentless use of social media, these two young models have dominated 2016 – so much so that it’s easy to forget they have a combined age of only 42. Yes, Kendall and Gigi are half the age of the average customer who buys the products they are paid millions to endorse.
Happily for those women who will never feel inspired by a grinning selfie of Gigi in a crop top, change is afoot. You just have to know where to look for it – and that is most definitely not Instagram. Elsewhere, you see, 2016 has been a remarkably cheering year for grown-up fashion, modelled by actual grown-ups.
In January, Sophia Loren, 81, appeared in a perfume advertisement for Dolce & Gabbana
. In February, Bette Midler
, 71, was cast in a Marc Jacobs
beauty campaign. In March, Jane Birkin
, 69, surfaced modelling a Saint Laurent tux. And in September, Lauren Hutton
, 73, delighted Milan Fashion Week
by taking to the catwalk in the Bottega Veneta show.
Tokenism? Who cares? Every time an older woman gets more airtime in the fashion industry, an older woman in the real world smiles. Then cancels her Botox appointment.
“I love it and think it’s really inspiring,” says Ruth Chapman, 53, co-chairman of matchesfashion.com and herself a constant reminder that you can look chic at any age.
“It’s encouraging women to be themselves and to respond by wearing and putting together clothes in a way that reflects their personalities. Designers like Marc Jacobs are also looking at the demographic of women that want to buy their clothes, and are now working with older women like Bette Midler.”
Given that the over-sixties now make up the fastest growing group of consumers in the world (in 2000, the 60-plus population was 600 million; by 2010 it had grown to 800 million and by 2050 it is predicted to hit two billion), it makes profoundly bad business sense not to target them. Worldwide, those over the age of 50 spent in excess of $11.13 trillion (US $8 trillion) in 2010; in 2020, this is projected to rise to $20.87 trillion (US $15 trillion) And who is behind up to 80 per cent of all consumer purchasing? Women.
Posted in Fashion, Feedback
Tagged Bette Midler, Gigi Hadid, Keeping Up with the Kardashians, Kendall Jenner, Kylie Jenner, Los Angeles, Paris, Reality television, The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, Victoria's Secret, Victoria's Secret Fashion Show