Clothing is more than just a way to stay warm and look good - it is a reflection of our culture and heritage, something that is deeply ingrained in our society. From the materials used to the way garments are manufactured, fashion is an integral part of our communities and cultures. Even those who choose to rebel against traditional fashion will inevitably express themselves through some kind of subcultural style. Fashion plays an important role in promoting freedom of expression, as it is often the first thing we use to communicate before speaking. Culture has a huge influence on the fashion of a region, but fashion can also affect culture in return.
For example, actress Christina Hendricks has helped revive long skirts, longer hems and cropped cardigans, as well as almost single-handedly bringing back the curvaceous cut in the fashion market. Culture and fashion are intertwined - fashion can be an expression of culture or a culture in and of itself. Despite the diversities, one consistency in the fashion culture of different countries is Western clothing in urban areas. The successful American television drama Mad Men, set in the early 1960s, has had a major influence on street fashion. It is important to note that the fashion culture in Africa is more haute couture than ready-to-wear, with almost everyone having their own tailor. Anything that is accepted by the prevailing culture and is sufficient to make an impact becomes fashionable in that region.
In other words, the Middle East has now begun to emerge as a center of fashion, although New York and Paris are still considered the world's fashion cities. Subcultural or minority groups often use fashion to express their ideals - think of punks with their handmade clothing style or the polo shirts of a country club or Orthodox Jews. Changes in culture such as modernization, new works of art and technological advances all have an impact on the fashion industry. Culture and fashion are like two sides of the same coin - there is no culture that is not clothed in some way. Fashion has always been an important part of our lives, from ancient times to modern day. It reflects our values, beliefs and identity, and it can be used to express ourselves without saying a word.
It can also be used to challenge traditional norms and create new trends. Fashion is an ever-evolving art form that will continue to shape our culture for years to come.