While the title of this post may be hyperbolic, an article in the New York Times' fashion section about a recent show in Paris annoyed me significantly. The couture outfit shown in the picture to the right is unlikely to be worn by anyone after the model discards it. It will not be mass-produced nor heavily marketed to the public. Even if it were, it would be a waste - of materials, money, and time. This, my readers, is decadence. Thankfully, it may soon be ending:
The haute couture, which is still the "degenerate institution propped by a sycophantic press" that Kennedy Fraser described more than 20 years ago, is in the last stages of a spaced-out race toward oblivion. Karl Lagerfeld, if he works to the end of his seven-year agreement with the Wertheimer family, which owns Chanel, will be nearing 80. Mr. Galliano will be past 50. And, at 32, the youngest practitioner, Riccardo Tisci of Givenchy, has the pretension to be a couturier but not the discipline or the honest imagination.
So enjoy! This is a historic moment. You are seeing the last great couturiers, the spiritual descendants of Charles Frederick Worth, make ridiculously expensive clothes, on sets that cost in excess of $1 million, and at a time when the richest houses, Dior and Chanel, have not only the means to indulge their creative madmen, but also the mental largesse.