Get shirty

February 9, 2009 at 6:43 pm 2 comments

If you have ever wondered whether it’s really worth splashing the cash on designer clothes then this may give you food for thought.

The Observer recruited Paul Smith to give its readers tips on how to create their own ‘designer’ pieces, and here he provides a step-by-step guide to customising inexpensive vintage shirts in order to create something with a more stylish modern cut.

shirts

Photo: Emily MacInnes

This kind of advice is great for those of us who want to put our own skills to the test and create a wearable piece out of cheap, recycled clothing. But it seems to me that the article is also suggesting that the only extras you get from a designer shirt is superior fabric and a superior cut – both of which appear not to require the usual costs associated with such items.

Paul Smith himself accepts that the vintage shirts you can pick up cheaply are so well-made that even he “spends hours each season looking into the construction details”. And if the patterns he has given away are as good as they purport to be, then improving the shape of an otherwise baggy shirt should also be within the average person’s reach.

Of course I accept that designers like Smith need to invest in the type of technology he describes to come up with original designs for shirts, and it is this whole process you are paying for when you buy his clothes. But if, with a bit of effort, anyone can have a crack at producing something of similar quality without all this expense, you do have to wonder what the point of going designer really is.

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Entry filed under: Discussion. Tags: , , , , , , , , .

Bag it up A concession for the recession

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Joel  |  February 10, 2009 at 4:19 am

    Great link-looking forward to reading it more intently and giving it a try!

  • 2. wecouldgrowup2gether  |  March 6, 2009 at 4:45 am

    shirts are insanely expensive these days, like 250 bucks a pop for a band of outsiders shirt, but oh-so-irresistible!

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