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Fashion refers to styles of dress (but can also include cuisine, literature, art, architecture, and general comportment) that are popular in a culture at any given time. Such styles may change quickly, and "fashion" in the more colloquial sense refers to the latest version of these styles. Inherent in the term is the idea that the mode will change more quickly than the culture as a whole.


  • Paris dictates fashion to the whole world.
    • Maria Callas, as quoted in Women's Wear Daily (20 December 1958), Marie-Jacques Perrier, 'Grande nuit de l’Opéra', New York.
  • The less taste a person has in dress, the more obstinate he always seems to be.
  • The fashion pages have always puzzled me. In my smugly ignorant view, the articles appear to be so full of fluff and nonsense as to make the astrology columns seem insightful by comparison.
  • Fashions, being themselves begotten of the desire for change, are quick to change also.
  • I have always believed that fashion was not made only to make women more beautiful, but also to reassure them, give them confidence.
  • Fashion is custom in the guise of departure from custom.
  • Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months.
    • Oscar Wilde, as quoted in The Dictionary of Humorous Quotations (1949) by Evan Esar.
  • If I'm wearing jeans all day at work, it's [hard] to slip into a dress and make yourself feel like you were born in it. That sort of thing can really be the difference between a good look and a great look. You can have a great dress, but when you put it on and you feel like it's embodying who you are that day, that's not just fashion, that's style!

Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations[edit]

Quotes reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 261.
  • Squinting upon the lustre
    Of the rich Rings which on his fingers glistre;
    And, snuffing with a wrythed nose the Amber,
    The Musk and Civet that perfum'd the chamber.
  • Nothing is thought rare
    Which is not new, and follow'd; yet we know
    That what was worn some twenty years ago
    Comes into grace again.
  • He is only fantastical that is not in fashion.
    • Robert Burton, The Anatomy of Melancholy (1621), Part III, Section II. Memb. 2. Subsect. 3.
  • And as the French we conquer'd once,
    Now give us laws for pantaloons,
    The length of breeches and the gathers,
    Port-cannons, periwigs, and feathers.
    • Samuel Butler, Hudibras, Part I (1663-64), Canto III, line 923.
  • Fashion—a word which knaves and fools may use,
    Their knavery and folly to excuse.
  • As good be out of the World as out of the Fashion.
  • The fashion of this world passeth away.
    • I Corinthians, VII. 31.
  • The glass of fashion and the mould of form,
    The observ'd of all observers.
  • You, sir, I entertain for one of my hundred; only I do not like the fashion of your garments.
  • I'll be at charges for a looking-glass,
    And entertain some score or two of tailors,
    To study fashions to adorn my body:
    Since I am crept in favour with myself,
    I will maintain it with some little cost.

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