Tuesday, January 5, 2010
Education or Entertainment
It seems there are suddenly a plethora of television shows out there on how to dress. Unfortunately, many of them are full of misleading information.
While some attempt to share tips on "dos and don'ts," what they recommend is often as bad as the don'ts. They give just enough correct information to mislead you: "Don't wear a high-neck sweater if you're large-busted" (which can be true). Yet the "after" look shows the woman wearing a scoop-neck t-shirt with a giant face on the front. Which is worse?
Most of these so-called "fashion divas" aren't discussing what you should wear in the workplace (at least not serious workplaces). Instead, they're all about how to look "hot" or "hip."
One TV show recently came out with a companion book, full of too many pages of clingy tees and too-tight skirts. (No S-shape backsides ... Please!) On one page, they totally dismiss a classic shift dress in favor of a frilly, busy print, when the real problem could be fixed simply with princess seams or darts to taper the basic dress.
Keep in mind that the focus of most television producers is to entertain you. If you happen to learn something (or think you're learning), that's just an added benefit. Therefore, they look for glamourous celebrities or shocking hosts, not content. But what you need to consider is: Would you rather learn style tips from a brand snob or ruthless queer guy, or from someone with sensitivity who teaches how to use the artistic elements of design to create your very own work of art? Watch fashion television if you like, but do it with informed eyes and don't take it too seriously.