Milan Fashion Week Day 1 and the international fashion scene, has been put under the Moschino spell thanks to a Barbie inspired show. Social media buzzing, Facebook newsfeeds incessantly reporting, twitter accounts on fire, Instagram accounts drenched in plastic pink and front row socialites all in awe at the sight of the [Moschino’s] SS15 collection. This is not just an ordinary fashion fix; this is a form of lifestyle, a cult, a way of being all embedded in the funky, yet elegantly presented outfits that were appearing before us. Seriously platinum blonde wigs and all of the different varieties of fuchsia dominated most of the show. Chain belts, vintage bikini tops, frills and candy pink dresses, enormous glam sunglasses and an insane amount of sequin, were taking as on a trip down memory lane.
The Barbie-inspired collection, despite appearances, is truly so much more than a mere representation of the perfect woman that arguably hides repression behind a plastic facade, as feminist approaches would note in discontent. In fact, it represents an enormous industry, with a million sub-branches, as well as a lifestyle that Mattel* solidified since the early 90s.
There’s hardly any 90s girl who cannot relate to the Barbie model; the lustrous impeccable hair, the ideal body figure, the perfect face…A social construct or not, these dolls have been keeping endless and selfless company to little girls all around the world for so many years. Barbies have been triggering imaginations, travelling their owners to fictional worlds of perfection, motivating them to indirectly, through the simple act of playing “house” and “dress up”, express all they wished to be, or what they wanted to achieve later on in life (see Barbie dentist, Barbie doctor, Barbie dancer etc….). It is for this very reason and with the very same eagerness, of those innocent and careless times, free from worries and dark shadows that women now obsess with Moschino’s new line.
Moschino has its audience accustomed to playful ideas splurged all over the outfits Jeremy Scott has been presenting over the years on the catwalk. Ranging from Sponge Bob Squarepants and McDonalds, now to Barbie, the statements tend to be big and loud. American influences take the lead in these collections and while simultaneously encompassing a pop art principle, the designer reminds us how our lives are in need of more colour and vivacity.
It is fascinating how fashion can inspire stimulating debates about lifestyle choices, about consumption and outside influences that drive our needs or wants. Nonetheless, given the frenzy of the moment, instead of contemplating too much, I must admit that I was one of the first to get the pink vanity mirror/iPhone case (by Moschino) and what I am not embarrassed to also confess is that, commercial or not, kitsch or not, I am utterly in love with it. It is true that certain products can remind you of the things that reality and dull routine often choose to erase. Upon that final note, it is true that every time I now answer my calls or when I grab my phone to text I feel cheerful and careless like, that not so distant past, when the world was a more sparkly and pink place. They don’t call it shopping therapy for nothing I guess!