“Haute Mess” appeared in Vogue Italia this March and caused quite a stir. Most articles I encountered on the subject were asking the question of whether or not it was racist. I found it to be more classist than racist. I’m sure a lot of people associate the tropes in these pictures with black people or mores specifically poor black people. I tend to associate them with poor American people. I’ve seen black, white, and latina women with the ridiculous nails and crazy hair styles. That being said I’m really not sure what to make of the spread. If nothing else its a pretty interesting idea. I think it puts a magnifying glass on class and how fashion and the hierarchy embedded in fashion and fashion magazines are so closely tied to what is representative of the ruling class. High fashion is expensive fashion. The fashion of poor people is quickly labeled as tacky or its co-opted and repackaged as something worth more money. It’s all very silly to me.
I do enjoy fashion from an aesthetic perspective, but the whole commercial side of fashion is something I stopped buying into at some point in college.. I remember being a teen and having the brand name whatever being the most important thing in the world it seemed like, but thats something I luckily grew out of.