#Funeralcore : The New Normcore, Health Goth or just Another Fashion Masquerade?

While fashion trends have always been the focus of each fashion and beauty editor, it seems that the creation of new and, arguably, made-up trend tribes are taking over. Fashion trends are ever changing, and new styles of dress emerge each season. However are these so called Trend Tribes just a clever marketing tool from brands and magazines that the fashion conscious have lapped up despite the origin of these trends being completely imagined?

Founding this fashion farce was 'Normcore' which dominated both the catwalk and the pavement. The 'bible' of fashion, Vogue, defined 'normcore'  as a bland, which perfectly describes the Zara-esque, basic looks presented by the designers, replicated by the highstreet and worn by a plethora of 'fashionable' women. The term 'normcore' was first used in 2013 by a New York trend agency, and it was soon used by fashion bloggers, editors and brands alike in order to promote What To Wear Now. 'Normcore' can be defined as an almost 'anti-style', where the looks are mostly unisex and, ultimately, pretty bland. Think 'ugly' flat shoes, oversized shirts and Mom jeans. It appeared as though being unfashionable, and overtly ordinary, was the new trend and as it was so easy and effortless to replicate, it took off quickly. 

'Normcore' was recently been replaced by the 'Health Goth', that the Guardian describes as 
"an aesthetic revolving around biotechnology, monochrome sportswear, fetish culture, extreme cleanliness, and rendered environments". Think Alexander Wang, especially their collaboration with high street giants H&M late last year, or more recently, Kanye West X Adidas at NYFW A/W '15. The fashion savvy have already started to incorporate this into their style with the addition of white Nike sports socks and monochrome New Balance trainers. 

So, what makes these 'trends' or 'fads' so marketable and well received? Firstly, they are extremely accessible. Although they are shown by designers at Fashion Week, the looks are easily replicated on the high street. This could, perhaps, be a reaction to the economy. Editors and stylists must be all too aware of the finical situations of their readership, and thus to keep the fashion industry alive fashion that be translated to all budgets is a must. Secondly, it perfectly illustrates the cycle that fashion goes through. Designers create collections, editors and buyers see these shows and hurry to translate them either to their readers or into their stores respectively. Then consumers read about the trends, see them in shops, be it high end or high street and buy into the trend because their Fashion Bible has told them that it's the 'hottest trent right now'. The power of marketing is often underestimated.

Despite the ranting tone of this post, the reason behind my sudden interest, fixation almost, with the 'Style Tribes' culture was discovering the newest tribe, as coined by blogging maven  Leandra Medine, or Man Repeller. Her recent post on the fashion week trend she has christened #Funeralcore, which you can read here, in which she characterised the look as "Think head-to-toe black, lace veils, fishnet stock ins and patent leather brogues". To me, this pretty much summed up the 'style', if you will, that I've been wearing for years. Grown Up Goth almost. While it's going to be so convenient that clothes I actually like will be available readily on the high street, it will also lessen the individuality I enjoy about my wardrobe. How long before we see these so called 'Health Goths', ditching the Health and opt for a little more deceased. This morbid looks were seen on the runways of Thom Browne and Marc Jacobs, which I wrote about here, is definitely inspired by 19th century mourning attire - a topic I recently wrote an essay on, and visited the Death Becomes Her exhibition at the Met Museum in New York, which I wrote about for Stylenoir here.

Just as grunge made a resurgence in the fashion world some twenty years after it's initial wave of popularity, which saw people the nineties revival of the tattoo choker, ripped jeans and plaid, and donning t-shirts with bands they had never heard of, #Funeralcore will no doubt also have people who are ignorant to the origin of the gothic playing imitating the style, for a season at least!

What my aim for this post, aside from being a seemingly negative rant - in actual fact I find the fashion industry fascinating - was to reinforce the fact that 'style' and finding ones own sense of style and expression of personality through aesthetics is paramount, and style and fashion are unquestionably different. As Yves Saint Laurent once said, "Fashions Fade, Style is eternal". So next season, instead of blindly buying into whatever trend or tribe is in Vogue, take what you want from each season and incorporate it into you own style, and if there's a trend you really despise, or that won't suit your style, leave it.

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