Fashion Frivolities

London is in the midst of its “Fashion Week,” and designer Katharine Hamnett has once again brought politics to the world of high fashion. The Guardian reports:
“Katharine Hamnett has spent 20 years attempting to prove that fashion and politics can mix. For this season’s London fashion week, which opens on the Kings Road today, she believes that she has hit upon the most potent formula yet – by adding sex and celebrity.” Hey, these creative people are really something. I wonder how she thought of that.
“Hamnett…hit the headlines in 1984 when she met Mrs Thatcher wearing a T-shirt bearing the slogan: 58% don’t want Pershing.” But it’s late in the day to be sticking up for the Evil Empire–now regrettably defunct–so Ms. Hamnett has a new issue:
“This season, Hamnett is using her catwalk to promote Aids awareness, a cause she has been involved with since she put condom pockets on boxer shorts in the 1980s.” Here’s her contribution to–I’m not making this up–fighting AIDS in Africa:
Thankfully, “[Hamnett] is a rarity in an increasingly apolitical fashion industry.” The model in the photo above–Naomi Campbell, for those who don’t follow these things–is an example of fashionista apathy:
“As a political firebrand, Hamnett has found an unlikely soulmate in Campbell. The model has never before worn a political slogan T-shirt, and her best-known political statement was to appear in a 1994 campaign by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, declaring: ‘I’d rather go naked than wear fur.’ Peta later sacked Campbell after she was photographed on three occasions wearing fur.”
This time, though, Hamnett is convinced Campbell really means it: “Hamnett says Campbell has convinced her that this time, she genuinely cares about the cause – ‘or, at least, I really think she’s trying to care’.”


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