Vivienne Westwood is still in the business of making clothes, but she has a new business model - selling them directly to her audience. She’s been selling her own brand for years now and has recently expanded into selling a range of other designers, including herself again. Westwood is still one of the most famous names in British fashion, but what exactly has made her so iconic? This article takes a look at some of the key moments in Vivienne’s career. Whether you love or hate her designs, there can be no doubt that Westwood has influenced not just fashion but cultural norms regarding sex, gender, and politics. Here are some things you may not know about the queen of punk fashion.
Vivienne became the first female designer to show at London Fashion Week
Westwood first broke onto the scene in the 1970s as a punk designer. Her early collections were made out of items like safety pins and were shocking in their simplicity and use of items that were not typically seen as fashionable. She was already known for her very specific and avant-garde style by the time she moved to London in 1977. In 1980, she became the first female designer to show at London Fashion Week, making her the first woman to showcase menswear on the catwalk in the process! Her collections were heavily inspired by her love of British culture.
Westwood's collaboration with The Sex Pistols
The Sex Pistols were one of the most influential bands of the late 70s punk scene. They were also known for being very provocative and controversial, with many of their lyrics being political and even violent. Vivienne Westwood collaborated with the band to create a special edition of the Union Jack. This was released as part of a campaign against the Criminal Justice Bill, which was a controversial set of laws passed by the Conservative government at the time. The Union Jacks were sold with a T-shirt that read “Death to the bill”.
Her company became “Gender Free”
Vivienne Westwood has always been vocal about her support for women’s rights and has often been at the forefront of issues relating to the fashion industry. In 2002, she announced that her company would now be “gender free” and that she would be replacing the word “women” on the labels of her clothing with “everyone”. At the time, this was not a typical practice, and it was a move that heavily impacted the industry and caused many other designers to rethink their own labels. She was once quoted as saying, “Fashion discriminates against the old, the fat, the ugly and the poor.” It should come as no surprise that she would choose to change her business model in order to be more inclusive.
Westwood collaborated with Samsung and Google for the release of Galaxy Shoe
In 2010, Vivienne Westwood collaborated with Samsung and Google to release the Galaxy Shoe. This was one of the first “smart” shoes that could be controlled by an app. The shoe was designed so that you could select music, receive messages, and even control other wearable technology like fitness trackers. It was released in very limited numbers, so they are now incredibly rare and collectible.
Reasons Vivienne Westwood is an Iconic British Designer
Her Collaborations are Always Memorable
Throughout her career, Vivienne Westwood has collaborated with many high-profile figures and brands, but her most memorable collaborations are always with other designers and artists. Her collections with the Sex Pistols are still talked about now, decades after they were released. Her collaborations with other designers and artists may not always sell, but they are always memorable and are often a source of conversation and inspiration for generations to come.
She was one of the first designers to use latex in designs regularly
Latex garments have become a staple in many wardrobes, but this was not always the case. Vivienne Westwood was one of the first designers to adopt latex as a regular part of her designs, and she did this in the 1980s when latex was still very much a novelty. Her iconic Union Jack design is still made with latex to this day.
She is a vocal supporter of women’s rights and gender equality
Vivienne Westwood has always been a vocal supporter of women’s rights and gender equality, which is evident in both her fashion collections and her activism. Her decision to replace “women” with “everyone” on the labels of her clothing is just one example of her support for gender equality and the end of discrimination against women.
Her influence on pop culture extends way beyond fashion
Vivienne Westwood is not just an iconic fashion designer, but she is also an iconic cultural figure whose influence can be seen in many other fields. From music to politics, Westwood has always been outspoken about issues that are important to her, and she has inspired many others to do the same.
There is no denying that Vivienne Westwood has influenced not only fashion but cultural norms regarding sex, gender, and politics.