Yum Hey What's for Dinner Mom?: The Price of Trendy


The Price of Trendy

What is the price of trendy? Is there something wrong with it? Was my mother right, Calvin Klein jeans with orange stitching really didn't matter? As a mom I look around and see these trends flowing over the country and it kinda makes me sick to my stomach. Whats cool one moment is so gone, so over, so uncool the next. How can anyone keep up? Do we have to?

Lets look first at the price of trendy, it used to be there were 4 seasons of clothing, now every two weeks there are new collections at popular stores (Gymboree, Old Navy anyone?). Stores charge too much money for their cheap clothes that can't stand up to regular washing and drying. But that's ok because it will wear out and you'll need the next new thing. The last 'layering shirt' I bought had holes after 3 weeks. What happened to quality? Wait it's new and improved K-WALITY. So much better, no?

What if your job was to make these clothes. In a hot windowless building for 12 hours a day with fabrics full of chemicals. And I refer to job very loosely because most of the folks in those "job' situations have no other choice. They can't quit or stop working, they are owned lock stock and barrel by us and our lust for the newest and coolest. The 'trendy' imprisons people, that might be a problem right there.

Funny thing is we abolished slavery more than 100 years ago, except we still depend on it. We just outsourced it to those less fortunate or more desperate than Americans.

Imagine you are a VHS tape and along comes the DVD, unceremoniously you are dumped, no matter how faithful you have been, you are donated or worse yet, thrown out. So then the DVD reigns supreme until...BLUE RAY. Again like lemmings the American public ran to buy the next coolest thing, tossing or donating DVDs. What's next, better TVS? Oh wait like flat screens? Who's driving this lust for the newest and coolest, advertisers? Or the companies who need to make money?

I met a woman at a conference last fall and her entire blog, her WHOLE shtick was cupcakes. What happens when cupcakes are over and pie is the new next best thing. Will she switch to pie? Will she keep on with cupcakes? Interesting thought, I wonder why her mama never told her to think for herself.

I wanted to be trendy. Oh god how I wanted to be cool, trendy, popular but there was just no way I was ever going to be that. Fortunately I had a very good friend in high school who was the tallest girl in school. She was so good for me, we shaved our heads together, put boys in trash cans for fun and raised hell all in a very untrendy way. She probably saved me from myself.

So what is my point? Think for yourself. It means so much. Much more than you realize, your individuality is being bought and sold on the whim of advertisers and companies. We are leveraged squarely on the back of slavery. Slavery is NOT over, we depend very much on it. Oh and my mom was so so right Calvin Klein's with orange stitching are NOT important.

Love and Peace--

why should ANYONE have to stock up? it's like admitting your product is crap-well for 30 bucks it probably is


  1. Great post Laura! My mom was the same - we were never allowed to ride the trend wagon. At the time I thought she was mean, evil, old-fashioned, and cheap. True, she was cheap, but there have been many times I looked back and thought "Ugh I'm so GLAD I was never allowed to be entranced by ____." It let me focus on more important things in life like being a kid and later on life itself.

    And really? Stock up on a DVD player? WTF does that mean??

  2. Really interesting post Laura, with some VERY good points!!

  3. Nice writeup, I don't think I am going to stock up anything even if they are very cheap until it is needed.

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  5. Hi Laura, I found your blog via Christina's Stylish Blogger award list (I'm on it too). Just wanted to say how much I like your site, have bookmarked it and will visit often. Love your thrifty philosophy!!! Have a great weekend.

  6. Kudo's to you Laura, I love this article. My dad was born and raised in china before the war and my mother lived through the war in England. Both taught me how to make due, fix things, jerry rig anything. We live in a disposable society certainly, but we here, do our best to make sure the things we buy are things that will last. I still use my records and turn table regularly! :) Hugs! Alex


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