Clothing means different things to different people. Some take a utilitarian approach to fashion, viewing clothing as a societal necessity and nothing more. Others view clothes as tools for artistic self-expression. Most people fall somewhere in the middle, adhering to general norms while using their clothing to make statements about who they are and how they view themselves. We all use fashion to tell other people about ourselves and to attract other like-minded people to us.
When we meet new people, we gauge their facial expressions and manners of speech. We use all of the tools at our disposal to get a feel for whether or not these people have the potential to become friends with us. Ultimately, much of this early social navigation comes down to determining whether or not you like the other person’s clothing. Good sense denotes high social status. When jewelry is well-made and features stones or accents of high quality, it can be presumed to be very expensive. The wearer knows this, and she chooses these pieces in the hopes that other people will know how much money she is able to spend on luxuries.
On the other hand, unconventional subcultures are identified by how their members dress. They do not choose jewelry that puts their wealth on display. People who participate in art or musical movements are judged by how competently they are able to pull off the prescribed style of their peers. Interestingly, though these groups pride themselves on being different, they value their brand of conformity just as much as conventional societies value theirs. Searching for the perfect vintage or up-cycled pieces to adhere to the prescriptions of a counterculture can be a hobby in itself. Groups that are based on creativity demand that their members dress to reflect that creativity.
This is not to say that everyone has to always follow rigid mandates in order to effectively communicate one’s social status. Cultivating a carefree air of confidence goes a long way toward appearing to be affluent, unconventional or however else one chooses to identify.About the Author:
Julia Lawrence thoroughly enjoys spending time researching and writing about diamonds, jewelry and pop culture! When she isn't hard at work writing blog posts for The Diamond Lining, she spends her time wither with an absolutely adorable Mini Golder Retriever: Jake, and her husband: Mr. Julia Lawrence.
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