Our head of Fashion’s verdict on the ‘ridiculous’ shirt on a T-shirt…

News Page 1st June 2018

It’s shaping up to be the biggest fashion stir of 2018 – Balenciaga’s T-shirt that features a long-sleeved shirt attached to its front.

The luxury fashion brand’s conceptual piece has certainly confused millions of internet users, while the UK mainstream press hasn’t held back on its criticism, with The Guardian labelling it ‘ridiculous’ and The Independent, ‘nonsense’.

Here, Head of Fashion at the University of Northampton, Dr Julie King, gives her verdict on the piece, and explains why some people might part with £935 to snare one for themselves.

“If you value it, you would buy it,” said Julie. “It’s from a well-known design house and what you are really paying for is perhaps, not the shirt or the T-shirt it’s sewn onto, you’re paying for the concept, materials, and the work and thought process that has gone into it – plus a little bit of the brand too.

“So yes, there are going to be people who pay money for it.

“Whatever your views are on it, it makes a very strong statement and people will notice it if you’re wearing one, and if they are in the know, they will know where it comes from.

“Fashion is about pushing boundaries, doing something new, something different – and this is different.

“If you’re a very wealthy person and into your brands, then yes, you would wear it to show you are very on-brand. I can imagine Kanye West wearing it and showing it off.

“But if you wanted to make your own, you could do it for much, much less than the near-£1,000 price tag.”

Julie added: “Conceptual pieces are nothing new, they’ve been around for decades and show a more fun side of fashion, that’s not to be taken too seriously.

“In the 1980s, you had Moschino putting teddy bears and knives and forks on dresses, and people were still buying them.”

Julie’s comments are taken from her interview with BBC Radio Leicester’s Ben Jackson, which took place on Friday 1 June. You can listen again here – the interview starts from 2:12.


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