Quotations about   fashion

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Male supremacy: Doctrine built upon three forms of superiority: the ability to grow a handlebar mustache, the ability to answer most of Nature’s calls efficiently, and the possession of pockets.

Marie Shear (1940-2017) American writer and feminist activist
“Media Watch: Celebrating Women’s Words,” New Directions for Women (May/Jun 1986)
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Added on 7-May-20 | Last updated 7-May-20
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To say that an idea is fashionable is to say, I think, that it has been adulterated to a point where it is hardly an idea at all.

Murray Kempton (1917-1997) American journalist.
Part of Our Time, ch. 6 “The Day of the Locust” (1955)
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Added on 1-May-20 | Last updated 1-May-20
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Pocket Envy: Women’s unfulfilled yearning for practical clothes

Marie Shear (1940-2017) American writer and feminist activist
“Media Watch: Celebrating Women’s Words,” New Directions for Women (May/Jun 1986)
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Added on 2-Apr-20 | Last updated 2-Apr-20
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Choose your pleasures for yourself, and do not let them be imposed upon you. Follow nature, and not fashion; weigh the present enjoyment of your pleasures against the necessary consequences of them, and then let your own common-sense determine your choice.

Lord Chesterfield (1694-1773) English statesman, wit [Philip Dormer Stanhope]
Letter to his son, #119 (27 Mar 1747)
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Our ancestors used to wear decent clothes, well-adapted to the shape of their bodies; they were skilled horsemen and swift runners, ready for all seemly undertakings. But in these days the old customs have almost wholly given way to new fads. Our wanton youth is sunk in effeminacy, and courtiers, fawning, seek the favors of women with every kind of lewdness. […] They sweep the dusty ground with the unnecessary trains of their robes and mantles; their long, wide sleeves cover their hands whatever they do; impeded by these frivolities they are almost incapable of walking quickly or doing any kind of useful work.

Orderic Vitalis (1075-c. 1142) English monk, chronicler
Historia Ecclesiastica, Book 4 [tr. Chibnall (1969-80)]

Alt. trans.: "Our ancestors used to wear decent clothes, nicely fitted to the shape of their bodies and suitable for riding and running and performing every task that they should reasonably perform. But in these wicked days the practices of olden times have almost completely given way to novel fads."
Added on 6-Jul-17 | Last updated 6-Jul-17
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No man ever stood the lower in my estimation for having a patch in his clothes; yet I am sure that there is greater anxiety, commonly, to have fashionable, or at least clean and unpatched clothes, than to have a sound conscience.

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862) American philosopher and writer
Walden, “Economy” (1854)
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Added on 3-May-17 | Last updated 17-May-17
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The fashion wears out more apparel than the man.

William Shakespeare (1564-1616) English dramatist and poet
Much Ado About Nothing, Act 3, sc. 3 (1598-99)
Added on 19-Apr-17 | Last updated 19-Apr-17
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Styles, like everything else, change. Style doesn’t.

Linda Ellerbee (b. 1944) American broadcast journalist
Move On: Adventures in the Real World (1991)
Added on 15-Mar-17 | Last updated 15-Mar-17
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The custom and fashion of to-day will be the awkwardness and outrage of to-morrow. So arbitrary are these transient laws.

Dumas - custom and fashion of today - wist_info quote

Alexandre Dumas, père (1802-1870) French novelist and dramatist
(Attributed)

Quoted in James Comper Gray, The Biblical Museum: Old Testament, vol. 3 (1878 ed.).
Added on 21-Jul-16 | Last updated 21-Jul-16
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Every age has its pleasures, its style of wit, and its own ways.

Nicolas Boileau-Despréaux (1636-1711) French poet and critic
The Art of Poetry [L’Art Poétique], Canto 3 (1674)
Added on 7-Jul-16 | Last updated 7-Jul-16
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I frankly admit to not knowing who I am. This is why I refuse to buy clothes that will tell people who I want them to think I am.

Russell Baker (b. 1925) American journalist, author, humorist
“Talking Clothes,” So This Is Depravity (1973)
Added on 15-Apr-15 | Last updated 15-Apr-15
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Gentlemen: I shall never shave, for the same reason that I started a beard, and for the reason my father started his. I remember standing at his side, when I was five, while he was shaving for the last time. “Father,” I asked, “Why do you shave?” He stood there for a full minute and finally looked down at me. “Why the hell do I?” he said.

George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950) British playwright and critic
(Attributed)

Postcard response when invited by an electric razor company to shave off his beard with their product. Variant:
  • "I was about five at the time, and I was standing at my father's knee whilst he was shaving. I said to him, 'Daddy, why do you shave?' He looked at me in silence, for a full minute, before throwing the razor out of the window, saying, 'Why the hell do I?' He never did again."
Added on 12-Feb-15 | Last updated 12-Feb-15
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It is disgusting to notice the increase in the quantity of coffee used by my subjects. … If possible, this must be prevented. My people must drink beer.

Frederick II (1712-1786) King of Prussia (a.k.a. Frederick the Great)
Proclamation (13 Sep 1777)
Added on 30-Oct-14 | Last updated 29-May-17
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If you rebel against high-heeled shoes, take care to do it in a very smart hat.

George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950) British playwright and critic
The Intelligent Woman’s Guide to Socialism, Capitalism, Sovietism, and Fascism, ch. 79 (1928)
Added on 5-Dec-13 | Last updated 5-Dec-13
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Fashion is something barbarous, for it produces innovation without reason and imitation without benefit.

George Santayana (1863-1952) Spanish-American poet and philosopher [Jorge Agustín Nicolás Ruíz de Santayana y Borrás]
The Life of Reason or The Phases of Human Progress, Vol. 3 “Reason in Religion, ch. 7 (1905-06)
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Added on 25-Jun-10 | Last updated 16-Mar-20
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For an idea ever to be fashionable is ominous, since it must afterwards be always old-fashioned.

George Santayana (1863-1952) Spanish-American poet and philosopher [Jorge Agustín Nicolás Ruíz de Santayana y Borrás]
Winds of Doctrine (1913)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 16-Mar-20
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