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foxhuntvintage
Style_council
foxhuntvintage
posts: 126

I recently came across this article in Adbusters on hipsters – http://www.adbusters.org/magazine/79/hipster.html
“Hipsterism” is interesting in that it’s this supposed subculture that’s based on very little but being stylish and seeming poor, and it seems (at least in my town) that kids clamor to be one, but no one wants to admit that they are. It’s come to the point where shops like UO have been so successful in hijacking and marketing the look that it’s near impossible to tell if someone’s posing or not. Even then, what is a hipster exactly? i don’t even know. I have a sense of it, but a hard time defining it. It’s become so mainstream so quickly that no one even really knows what it is or why it started.
I’ve also noticed hipsterdom seeping into my wardrobe – AA v-necks i wear religiously (they’re just so flattering!) cheap mondays and chucks. It wasn’t until i put perscription lenses into a pair of big ol’ glasses that I realized some days, I too might be seen as “hipster”. And to tell the truth, I’m torn between liking aspects of the style and feeling like a douchebag for it.
What’s your take on it? Is it acceptable to incorporate some decidedly hipster elements into your wardrobe, or should it be “all or nothing”? Is it just unfashionable people being jealous of the young and beautiful? What about the socio-economics of it – that the idea is to look like you shop at thrift stores and find shoes at garage sales, but in reality you live with daddy and he pays for all of it? Is looking poor cool as long as it looks good? Is it even possible to dress yourself these days without dipping your toes into “hipster” trends?
I’m not decided on this, but i do know one thing – i’d rather try to create a distinct look than follow the herd, even if they do look great.

posted almost 6 years ago
whitedayburnday
Style_council
whitedayburnday
posts: 91

Someone called me a hipster but they were referring to it as something like is up to date with popular culture ie games / tv / music / humor.. which i’m not at all. I have no idea what it actually means. it’s probably just popular “indie” or some such thing. either way I’m poor and so thrift stores work out pretty nice for me but clothes at actual stores that arent sales suck for me and a lot of people who only wear AA can be considered hipster and those clothes are expensive to me.. so who knows ?
Either way I just wear whatever i like and usually it doesnt look like anything i’ve ever seen before. If i see something i like the i will buy it and it usually just ends up meshing with a bunch of other stuff and turning into my own personal style.
but what matters most of all is that you don’t give a fuck. if you like it wear it, if you dont then don’t. if other people don’t like it then they never have to wear it themselves.

posted almost 6 years ago
 
foxhuntvintage
Style_council
foxhuntvintage
posts: 126

this is true. maybe the biggest thing i’ve realized is that i don’t really care. If someone wants to call me one, then fine. Also, being a student and not having the money for lots of clothes means i need to be more creative to find a look i like – let’s face it, if you’ve got money and a clue it’s easy to look good. But if you’ve got $15 to spend, you better get right to what works on you, quick.

posted almost 6 years ago
 
foxhuntvintage
Style_council
foxhuntvintage
posts: 126

yes i do find that as i get older “fitting in” matters less….but I think what I was driving at more is the “cultural significance of clothing. I wouldn’t walk out of the house tommorrow with a mohawk and motorcycle jacket, or shave my head and wear a fred perry polo and suspenders, even if i looked amazing, because those looks have very distinct cultural connotations . The prime hipster example of this absent-minded cultural borrowing is the keffiyeh – those fringed, plaid scarves. It can’t be denied that what you wear is a message about who you are – whether you try or not. And ignorance of the origin of what you’re wearing isn’t an excuse.
So i guess my real question is, in the 21st century can we borrow freely from significant elements of past subcultures, elements that once (or still) have political associations as long as it looks good? Has fashion as political statement died completely? Or was fashion as a platform for political statement always a bit of a joke anyways?

posted almost 6 years ago
 
Kellyn
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Kellyn
posts: 23

The term “hipster” was first coined in the ‘50s by novelist Norman Mailer in his essay entitled “The White Negro” to describe the phenomenon of the introduction of jazz to the mainstream. Hipsters were described as “having ‘absorbed the existentialist synapses of the Negro,’ and who accepts ‘the meaninglessness of life’.” The hipsters, with their anti-materialism, self-discovery and a love of jazz, would herald in the Beat Generation, heavily inspired by the literary works of Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg. The word “hippie” was actually derived from the word “hipster” in 1965, to describe the new bohemians of California. Of course, a lot of people used “hippie” as a pejorative term. It was originally used by African-American jazz musicians to describe the “white beatnik hangers-on in the jazz scene” or for describing someone who is only “half-hip.”
(Yes, I know far too much about this. I wrote a research paper my last year of college on the youth counterculture during the Vietnam Era.)
Hipster was once only a state of mind and not a dress code. I dress how I want to dress. I generally hit up the thrift stores and sales racks of other stores because, well, I’m a poor graduate student living in an expensive city. That’s just my style.

posted almost 6 years ago
 
thefieldsofelysium
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thefieldsofe...
posts: 170

i generally associate ‘hipsters’ with indie music that no-one’s ever heard of, ‘poor’ chic, and a bit of pretentiousness (depending on whom you meet). but i think you’re right in that there’s no concrete definition – as times change, terms change. they get a lot of flak for their snobbishness and attempts at pseudo-intellectualism….but it’s just a stereotype. some are douchebags, some aren’t….i attribute it more to individual personality than ‘hipsterism’. i don’t necessarily think they’re a group of people to be derided, even if they’re into the whole ‘appear poor although i’m rich’ look. after all, everyone’s style – even those who seem way off the spectrum – is influenced by someone else. if ‘hipster’ is the way they want to look, then that’s their right, by all means. and if non-hipsters get influenced and see some ‘hipster’ aspects appearing in their wardrobe, i wouldn’t be too concerned. it’s just clothes. while i’m not terribly fond of labels, i think sometimes they’re unavoidable. we need such things to differentiate between ‘us’ and ‘them’, ‘me’ and ‘you’—the ‘hipsters’ (those who protest labels, anyway) really shouldn’t get too worked up about that. we all belong to one group or another in society, and with the way we communicate with and influence each other, there’s no way that someone can be ‘non-conformist’ and above labels. i think there’s too great of an emphasis to be completely original/unique, to assert an individual look….as long as we like what we wear and the way we look, then it’s all good. there are bigger issues in the world than fashion and labels. :)

posted almost 6 years ago
 
thefieldsofelysium
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thefieldsofe...
posts: 170

in response to your comment….you bring up interesting points regarding cultural significance and political associations, although i’ll have to say your questions aren’t easy ones to answer. i’ll admit that my opinions on these issues aren’t wholly fleshed out, but here are my 2 cents. first, regarding the keffiyeh, i think of it more as an exceptional case. typically in fashion, nothing purely belongs to one culture/brand/person. everything is borrowed from, influenced by, and/or derived from one source or another, usually harmlessly. there will always be assumptions on your character based on what you wear, although the keffiyeh is on a different scale than what we would normally consider during our everyday lives. i think that while the ignorance of the keffiyeh as a symbol of sympathy with Palestine may not cast a good light on those who wear it, it nevertheless brings attention to a political issue that the youths of today may not have been aware of before. in that sense, even mindless borrowing is a medium of cultural and political discourse. i believe fashion – in a way – strives to do the same (i.e. McQueen’s borrowing of the Indian mojris). i don’t think that what people wear should necessarily be limited by political sensitivity, because it’s impossible to completely avoid stepping on toes or sending out a potentially negative connotation, particularly in the volatile and opinionated world of fashion. back to the keffiyeh, it could very well be that some ‘hipsters’ do – in fact – sympathize with the Palestinians. should they be discouraged from wearing it, to avert any criticisms from Israelis or their supporters? i shouldn’t think so. fashion oftentimes reflects the political environment of the times (i.e. Vivienne Westwood), so it’s not a joke and certainly shouldn’t be disregarded. however, i think there has been a significant shift in how we perceive the association (or disassociation) between fashion and politics. i’m afraid i can’t qualify the causes satisfactorily, but i do believe that there is a greater disconnect between the two. what to do about it, though, i have no idea….

posted almost 6 years ago
 
Paula
Style_council
Paula
posts: 10

I have never heard of the term ‘Hipsterism’ but it all seems pretty complex. Im not financially well off-especially as a a recent grad &musician, but I play around with what clothes I have and with what I can afford. Labels make people feel comfortable and people will always have an opinion on what you wear or how you look. But opinions change, where a hip outfit can quickly change into being a shit one. So wear what you want to wear!

posted almost 6 years ago
 
ClothesHorse
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ClothesHorse
posts: 250

To me hipsters are as much about the lifestyle as the fashion. Can one really be considered a hipster when they don’t go to all the “hip” parties, share their political values and passions, and have a group of friends that look the same? Also, isn’t it slightly ridiculous that we shouldn’t be allowed to wear comfy v-necks and prescription glasses with black frames just because those are “hip” now?
I’ve never been called a hipster really (and I am clearly not one), but I’m also not going to hide from items I like just b/c they’re now associated with hipsters.

posted almost 6 years ago
 
changology
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changology
posts: 150

hipster shmipters…anyone who takes that label seriously should…shakes head in shame.

posted almost 6 years ago
 
foxhuntvintage
Style_council
foxhuntvintage
posts: 126

thanks for weighing in guys. i thought the article brought up an interesting point, based on what i’ve observed as well. but ultimately, i think you should wear what looks best on you, while keeping “culturally literate”. Clothing is an interesting thing (thank you for such an articulate and thoughtful reply, thefieldsofelysium!) as you can read as much or as little into clothing as you want. and clotheshorse, i agree – it’s all a part of an identity, which was what i was trying to get at.

posted almost 6 years ago
 
frictioninyourjeans
Style_council
frictioninyo...
posts: 127

I’ve been rocking the grandpa glasses for a few years now and I was always made fun of it in high school. Now on facebook the same people who made my life miserable are now wearing those black 3D-esque ones.

From my point of view, everyone is a hipster and it’s youtube that dominates the whole thing. I say do what you like and wear whatever you want. Hanes has been selling those V-necks in packs for ages, don’t get all freaked out now that they’re “mainstream” (whatever that is).

Where I live if you like vintage clothing or even thrift, you’re a hipster. If you like astronomy and galaxy print, you’re a hipster. If you even own a CD of some unsigned band, you’re a hipster. By all of these “qualifications” I believe we all may be hipsters. How unfortunate, eh?

I think a huge portion of this would be the people who labeled themselves as “scene” and this is them trying to dress more maturely and grow up, in my humble opinion.

posted over 2 years ago
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