Saturday, Aug 2, 2014 02:31 am est

Tim Gunn, Valerie Steele together in conversation at Brooklyn Museum

Posted on January 31, 2014 | by David Bologna

via flickr.com

Sitting pristinely in his dapper suit, Tim Gunn shared some conversational words of wisdom with fashion studies pioneer Valerie Steele at the Brooklyn Museum on Thursday, Jan. 30.

Gunn and Steele’s “In Conversation” event provided an inside look into the reality that is the fashion world, discussing the thriving evolution of fashion education, the role of the LGBTQ community in fashion and the current economic state of the fashion industry.

The most gripping words came when both Gunn and Steele spoke about their reflections of the industry in the past, its current state and their predictions for the future.

Gunn’s industry past included a focus on making strides in fashion education. After moving to New York to work at Parsons The New School for Design, Gunn began to cultivate a new curriculum for the school in 1999, changing a program that, at the time, still dated back to the original curriculum from 1953. Gunn felt it was a necessity to change with the times and continue to evolve, especially in the clothing industry.

“Fashion, like all good design, happens in a context,” Gunn said. “It’s societal. It’s cultural. It’s historic. It’s also economic and political.”

Fashion is a financial commodity and can fluctuate vastly depending on the state of its present economy. With the shift of manufacturing from the United States to foreign countries like China, production has become cheaper than ever and in turn has affected the quality of the clothing we purchase. Gunn feels it will affect how we make purchases in the future.

“I predict that with a huge, gigantic store like Macy’s, you’re going to see all of the individual designer brands disappear, the whole place is going to be privately owned,” Gunn said. “It’ll all be designed internally and you will see the private brands return.”

Due to the craze of inexpensive stores like H&M, local fashion could be on the horizon.

“It’s so incredibly wasteful and it’s flicking along with everything so quickly, I think in a way you’re going to start to see a little development toward slow fashion like slow food in response to sort of the ‘McDonaldization’ of the world,” Steele said.

Anne Thornton, 32, admired the panelists’ honesty.

“I thought it was interesting how open and honest [Steele and Gunn] were about what’s happening in fashion, where we’re headed, where we’re going and where we’ve been,” Thornton said. “I think they had a lot of great insightful things to say, and they were coming from a place that I definitely feel like that’s where we are now.”

Amberly Hilsinki, 31, also commented on how genuine the speakers were in their open conversation.

“It was interesting how grounded it was from a business standpoint,” Hilsinki said. “Just in terms of the manufacturing [and talking] about the retailer side. It wasn’t just sort of … pie in the sky.”

David Bologna is a staff writer. Email him at bstyle@nyunews.com 

Comments

CLOSE [x]
CLOSE [x]
CLOSE [x]
profile portrait
Felipe De La Hoz

Multimedia Editor | Felipe De La Hoz is a Colombian national studying journalism at the College of Arts and Sciences. Having been born in Colombia and raised in the United States, Mexico and Brazil, Felipe is a trilingual travel aficionado and enjoys working in varied and difficult environments. Apart from his photography, Felipe enjoys investigative reporting and interviews, interviewing the likes of Colombian ex-M-19 guerrilla fighters and controversial politician Jimmy McMillan. He has covered everything from governmental conferences to full-blown riots, as well as portraiture shoots and dining photography. Having worked under Brazilian photojournalists for Reuters and AFP, Felipe hopes to one day work on demanding journalistic projects and contribute to the global news cycle.

AS
Ann Schmidt

News Editor | Ann is a liberal studies sophomore who lived in Florence during her freshman year. She plans on double-majoring in journalism and political science and is always busy. She is constantly making lists and she loves to laugh.

 

DY
Daniel Yeom

Daniel started at the Features desk of WSN last Spring, writing restaurant reviews whilst indulging on free food and consequently getting fat. Last Fall, he was the dining editor, and he this semester he is senior editor. Daniel is in Gallatin (living the dream) studying Food & Travel Narratives, incorporating aspects of Food Studies, Journalism, and Media, Culture, and Communication. He loves food more than life itself.

Hannah Luu

Deputy Multimedia Editor | Hannah Luu is a ridiculously great Deputy Multimedia Editor. She is a sophomore from Northern California. If you think Northern California means San Francisco you might need to closely examine a map. She is passionate about NPR and being half Asian.

CLOSE [x]
  • How to join:

    The Washington Square News holds open weekly budget meetings at its office located at 838 Broadway every Sunday. All are welcome to attend, no matter your background in journalism, writing, or reporting. Specific times for meetings by desk are listed below. If you wish to talk to an editor before you attend, feel free to check out the Staff page.

    NEWS FEATURES MULTIMEDIA SPORTS ARTS OPINION
    5 P.M. 6 P.M. 6 P.M. 6:30 P.M. 6:30 P.M. 7 P.M.

    Applying for an editor position: Applications for editor positions during the fall or spring semesters are available twice each academic year and can be found here when posted. Applications for the Fall 2012 semester are closed, but check back for Spring 2013. Those who wish to apply are urged to publish pieces in the newspaper and contact current editors for shadowing.

    History of the Washington Square News:

    The Washington Square News is the official daily student newspaper of New York University and serves the NYU, Greenwich Village, and East Village communities. Founded as an independent newspaper in 1973, the WSN allows its undergraduate writers and photographers to cover campus and city news and continues to grow its strong body of award-winning journalists and photographers.

  • The WSN has a circulation of about 60,000 and can be found in over a hundred purple bins distributed throughout campus. It is published Monday through Thursday during the fall and spring semesters and online on Friday, with additional special issues published in the summer. The newspaper recently revamped its website during the Fall 2012 semester.

    Like few campus newspapers in the country, the paper is editorially and financially independent from the university and is solely responsible for selling advertisements to fund its production. The WSN, including its senior staff, is run solely by current undergraduate students and the business-division is largely student-operated as well.

    A Board of Directors comprised of alumni, NYU professors and working news media professionals serves as advisors to the paper. Board members have no control in the WSN's editorial policy or newsroom operations. Alumni of the newspaper are established and leading journalists in such news organizations as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, NBC news, ABC news, Fox News, and USA Today.

    Next