Dreams of Small Nations in a Polycentric Fashion World

Lise Skov

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


    Fashion production has been split between a globalized clothing industry, which tends towards extreme centralization, and localized designer fashion sectors, acting as intermediaries between international suppliers and national events, media, and public. Under these conditions, designer fashion takes on national significance, in terms of staging events and displays, and engaging with cultural references outside the field of fashion. This article explores how such place-making abilities structure the polycentric world of fashion, taking the United Nations Security Council as a model for the interaction between first- and second-tier fashion cities. The article analyzes the rhetoric of new fashion centers as a traveling discourse that detaches fashion design from the concerns of textile and clothing industries and links it with those of cultural institutions and governments. It also examines how notions of cultural superiority have held European designers back from giving local flavor to their designs, but how there has recently been an approximation between fashion and folk culture.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalFashion Theory
    Issue number2
    Pages (from-to)137-156
    Publication statusPublished - 2011

    Cite this