Arts, Column

Fast Food Fashion: The Misguided McDonald’s Collection

It can be easy to get caught up in all of the fashion trends swirling around the stratosphere, especially during this runway show time of year. All of a sudden you are dropping phrases like “It girl,” “street style,” “hot-spot,” and “cutting edge” into your daily conversation. You will use any excuse to bring up the latest collections and shows in blatantly preposterous ways. Your friends are starting to abandon you, and your roommates are wishing they could. But you just can’t stop the word vomit-pastels, leather, lace, S/S2014, fashion darling. You are starting to hate yourself.

It can be good to take a step back and remember that, sometimes, fashion gets out of hand. Sometimes even the most incredible designers seem to crack up under the pressure of runway shows and award shows that are so inescapable at this time of year. Sometimes a bad idea will be born and the fatigue of fashion weeks around the world will negate said designer’s usually fabulous sense of judgment. I believe that one such brand to fall victim to this tragedy would have to be Moschino. The designer who is out of hand these days: Jeremy Scott.

Now I will be the first person to argue about the artistic endeavor that is fashion design. Inspiration can come from anywhere and may be buried among the pleats and frills of a design, or tucked behind the sleek edges, or manifested in a chic shoe. Inspiration is truly a fickle beast and can rear its sometimes ugly head at almost any moment. The trick is knowing when to listen to its guttural call, and when to ball up those notes and toss them out. In this case, burning might have been better.

I am referring to what has quickly become known as Moschino’s McDonald’s collection, which made its debut at Milan Fashion Week. Although some argue that haute couture is too far removed culturally, too out of the mainstream, it seems that Scott has tried a tad too hard to dispel these critiques. McDonald’s-are you for real? The collection plays with the signature ketchup red and mustard yellow that we have all come to know, and maybe love? I don’t know, but for me it brings up memories of soggy fries and stomachaches.

Scott does not stop at utilizing this color duo in his collection. Oh no. Golden arches are found scattered throughout, sweaters, handbags, etc. French fry shapes dot sunglasses, and punny phrases are stitched onto perfectly good sweaters: “Moschino Over 20 Billion Served.” Golden arch pumps will leave you shuddering. I couldn’t help but think of those awful Halloween costumes sold specifically for grown women who, it is assumed, want to be as naked as possible on a chilly night in October. You know the ones that I mean, the ones that are pretty much lingerie or a tight dress but are disguised as real costumes. Along the lines of Adult Sexy Cookie Monster or Adult Sexy Minnie Mouse. Adult Sexy Ronald McDonald, anyone? No takers?

Scott also paid some very literal homage to Spongebob Squarepants and Fruit Loops cereal, because hey, why not? (Granted, the Fruit Loops dress is kind of amazing.) My real question is, why? What sort of name are these pieces creating for themselves? Surely this collection will make a splash and make some news, but are you really creating pieces that people want to wear? Will this add to the legacy of Moschino in years to come? As far as fads go, I think the answer is, tragically, yes, which makes me question the sanity of my beloved fashion cohorts. It seems that some of the pieces, including a McDonald’s-inspired backpack, have already sold out from the Moschino website.

Sigh. I’m not usually one to turn away from some fashion fun, but it all seems so wasteful in a way. These pieces will be faddy for a while, speckling the street style radar, showing your fashion blog fans that you are hip and ironically cool, but then what? I love pop culture just as much as the next person-and at times, maybe even more-but this seems a touch crazy.

This combination of art and pop culture and fashion has left me with a bit of a stomachache. This inspiration was not filtered quite enough. It is found in a far too concentrated level, dangerous maybe, floating down fashion runways and into homes. Beware the golden arches! My only true disappointment with Scott’s collection is the absence of a Shamrock Shake-themed piece. St. Patrick’s day is right around the corner, you know!


February 26, 2014