The Role Of Street Style In Shaping Fashion Culture
Claire Miles - March 16, 2023

Street style, or fashion that is inspired by everyday, real-life fashion rather than high fashion or couture, has played a significant role in shaping fashion culture. The street style emerged in the 1970s and 1980s when photographers such as Bill Cunningham and Scott Schuman began documenting the fashionable looks of everyday people on the streets of cities like New York and Paris. Street style has since become a major influence on mainstream fashion and has helped to democratize fashion by making it more accessible and inclusive.

Getty Images/DigitalVision/MoMo Productions

One of the main ways that street style has shaped fashion culture is by showcasing the fashion of everyday people. In the past, fashion was largely dictated by high fashion designers and the fashion industry, and most people did not have access to these expensive and exclusive styles. Street style, on the other hand, celebrates the fashion of everyday people and gives them a platform to showcase their personal style.

Street style has also played a role in shaping fashion culture by influencing mainstream fashion. Many designers and fashion brands have been inspired by street style and have incorporated elements of it into their collections. Additionally, street style has helped to diversify fashion culture. In the past, fashion was largely dominated by a narrow group of designers and models who were predominantly white and thin. Street style, on the other hand, has given a platform to a wider range of people, including those of different races, sizes, and genders.

However, street style has also faced its challenges. One issue is the commercialization of street style. As the street style has become more popular, it has been appropriated by fashion brands and used as a marketing tool. This has led to a backlash from some quarters, with people arguing that street style has lost its authenticity and become too commercialized. Another challenge is the issue of cultural appropriation. Some people have criticized street style for appropriating styles from marginalized communities without giving credit or acknowledging their cultural significance. This has led to debates about the line between cultural appreciation and cultural appropriation in fashion.

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