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Does Street Style Matter?

Street Style.  When I first heard the term it conjured endless images of white, middle class men with too much money and too much time on their hands, trying to boast their style credentials from one high street coffee chain to another, itching to run into some street style blogger so they can light up a cigarette in an enigmatic and seductive manner.  Yet, street style is about so much more than the starving students who have clearly spent hours in front of the mirror practicing the obligatory pretentious 'street style pose', which most often entails one standing on one leg like a contrived flamingo and avoiding looking into the camera.

Street style is an essential force to the fashion industry.  It is the driving force behind the high street brands and the high fashion industry.  It is an art form in itself.  It reflects the complex relationship between the world of aesthetics and the real world. 

These images that I pulled from the web show the perfect contrast.  The one on the left was taken in the twentieth century and the one on the right was snapped in present day, twenty first century.  The one on the left is the perfect example of timeless style and current trends.  The modern "ankle cleavage" in the bottom half of the photo and the sartorial excellence in the top half symbolize what street style is all about.  Taking into account that this young fella probably didn't have any other trousers that fit him at the time but his exposed ankles look so contemporary that you can see why designers would be inspired by such an image.  Just as in the first photo, the same details jump out at us in the second.  Yes, this is a very fashion forward cut but at the same time we are still struck by this gentleman's choice to hem his trousers so that the is little break.  It has a little bit more forethought but the visual impact is the exact same.   

The snap on the left is a genuine guy living his everyday life and showcasing the role of street style.  What I love about this photo is the sense of movement portrayed within.  This guy is not stylish and you can see that from the clothes he is wearing.  But it is the way he is standing, the way he moves and in my imagination, which always gets the better of me, the way he lives.  I always love looking at photos of Italian people.  They portray such a. Presence in a photo.  It took a while but I eventually found the image on the right which I think shows a great deal of humanity.  Usually I look at people's clothes, it's just a habit, but here I do everything but that.  Obviously they both dress well the only thing more tangible is their friendship. 

Each and every one of us makes a social, cultural and historical statement everyday.  Looking at myself for example, my skinny jeans, my hair (some Jedward, James dean kinda thing, I don't know), and my boots.  We may not know it at the time, we just think that we look good today.  What we chose to wear is inseparable from how we wish to align ourselves with conformist society.  And where can we make these statements? On the street. 

I wrote this post because on my last blog, I focused more so on street style and I loved it, so as intended from the start, in the next few months you can expect to see some street style snaps here on "Mark My Style".  Street style shows us the complex relationship between fashion, history, heritage and humanity so I hope to express that through street style posts in the future.