By Sam Fleury ’10
The modern hipster is considered “indie” or individual.
This trend stems from indie/underground music scenes and other anti-establishment movements.
The indie music trend has been around for decades but has resurfaced with more girth in this decade.
Bands that don’t want to “sell out” have inspired this individual era. The train of thought has immigrated from bands into the public.
The thought of being your own individual is a beautiful concept.
Not conforming to what others want you to be. Just go against the status quo because you want to. You can do whatever you want to do.
Really putting the “be yourself” cliché to work.
It’s every rebellious teenager’s dream.
So it is natural that it is adopted by so many.
However, this theme morphs often into irony.
It happens when so many are trying to be different that they suddenly become the same.
Many trends that harness nonconformity suffer from this irony.
They succumb to the thing they are trying to escape.
Indie clothing for example isn’t new or different. Experts call it a cannibalism of past styles.
It is a consumption of all the cool things from past decades.
Retro items and bits taken from other styles were tossed together to form a mishmash.
There is an interesting online illustration of these styles titled the “Evolution of the Hipster.”
It is easily found through Google.
This illustration, which is by Josh Meister, displays the different styles and the years they found popularity.
It is a good reflection but it has some snide remarks on the usage of some fashions.
Some examples the illustration brings up are far too common in their ridiculous attempts to be cool or hip. The one that sticks out is the usage of thick rimmed glasses despite no need for optical correction.
This addition of something that is unnecessary is a commonly used tool in self improvement but it goes totally against the mission statement if any the “indie” movement has.
Being yourself is the calling, but wearing glasses that you don’t need is not being yourself at all.
The contradiction is unnerving.
The trend isn’t bad. If anything it improves the world.
The bright colors add flavor to the world.
The main problem settles with the irony that comes out of the trend.
The trend seeks only to call out the individual but industry, and perhaps some human instinct to segregate, makes it into a set of clothing, and separation into cool or not cool.
With the new decade upon us, hopefully there can be some revolution.
Youths can maintain that theme and not say they stand for something just to be cool.
Being part of the in-crowd is not necessary so don’t sell out.