By Lynsey Eaton | Photography by Danielle Sabol
The thing about trends is that they are trendy for a reason, right? They gained popularity because, without stating the obvious, people really like them. A lot of people.
The problem with trends is they have a time stamp. Just like a song that gets too much airtime, even if you loved them in the beginning, they’re destined to become overplayed. And good luck wearing one a year, much less five years, after its heyday. They fade too fast because they come with that time stamp. A time stamp and their own Instagram hashtag.
But, no matter how much want to be that cool girl who avoids trends like the line at Zara on a Saturday, we all fall victim to them because they are trendy for a reason. And that reason is that they are often really freaking cool. So how do you know when to give in and when to save your hard-earned money for something with a little more longevity? Here are our guidelines:
- Ask yourself why you like it.
Is your obsession with a trend because of the brand or the product? If your proclivity towards a piece is more about the brand than the piece itself, we’d recommend holding off. Lusting after something because you want a piece of a brand generally leads to spending too much money on something you don’t really care that much about. You’ll get over it, promise. If you genuinely love the product, on the other hand, the chances of you wanting to wear it over and over (and therefore get your money out of it) are much, much higher.
- What’s the price point?
If you were out waiting in week long lines for an $800 pair of Isabel Marant wedge sneakers, we’d say reconsider (which is not to say, we weren’t in all actuality standing right there with you). Spending your monthly rent on something that will be quickly dated by its popularity isn’t advisable. The cost per wear is probably going to end up pretty close to $800 to 1. But, if you’re looking at a Cult Gaia ark bag for a little over $100 with plans to wear it all summer long (which you will, we promise), then you’ve got a better chance of getting your money out of it in wears before you move on to the next thing.
Which brings us to our final point:
- Is there something intrinsically different or good about this trend…
No, just really liking it a lot doesn’t count. For us, the Cult Gaia ark bag is the perfect example of a trendy “it” piece that is also intrinsically good. It is everywhere right now, but it is so incredibly different from anything we’ve got in our closet or anything else on the market that we think it’s less of a trend and more of a hole in our closet that we were all pretty excited to fill. Not to mention it’s chic as shit. Contrast that with another off-the-shoulder top…
- OR could it be considered a basic?
Notwithstanding the aforementioned consideration (we recognize we are about to back pedal here…), we also give extra consideration to on-trend pieces that could also be considered a wardrobe staple. A robe, for example, is very of the moment but, if you don’t already have one, nabbing a solid colored classic iteration isn’t a bad idea. While trendy, it’ll also be something that comes around time and again but won’t date itself. That being said, don’t go overboard. Pick a version you love and move on. No need to become a collector.
So there, those are the questions we ask ourselves before jumping in. If we genuinely love the product, it’s not too expensive and it’s intrinsically good/different, we grant ourselves a bye, or a buy, rather.
And then wear the crap out of it.