Launched in 2012, semiofashionandthecity.com is a blog dedicated to fashion semiotics, which deals with all-round apparel sense-making. Edited by Eleonora Chiais and Federica Turco, both PhD students at the University of Torino (Italy), semiofashionandthecity.com brings semiotics from dusty libraries to glamorous catwalks, throughout words of mouth, highlighting that fashion is indeed a matter of sense.
Helped along by fashion blogs, fashion magazines, fashion theory, and fashion analysis, being out of fashion seems impossible nowadays. But can a real fashion addict just buy the latest trendy garments and match it with the seasonal modish accessories? There is only a perfect discipline – that boasts philosophical roots and an Aristotelian authorship – for analyzing the way how fashion garments are matched together, becoming meaningful objects for the observers.
This discipline is, of course, semiotics which is often perceived as a boring subject for nerdy university students. But, as a matter of fact, it offers a lot more than that. According to its etymology, semiotics means the analysis of signs (semeion, “sign” in Greek also means “miracle”) Semiotics examines the factors which give a communicational value to an object when it is inserted into a shared data context. Thus semiotics helps us to reveal – and not just accept as a fact – the reason why a businessman with a suit will be immediately distinguished from a yuppie disco PR with jeans and an all-the-rage t-shirt. Why all this happens?
Quoting Barthes, this could be explained because “the dress gives sense to a body and makes it living: It appraises the body, making it being seen. Dress does not hide nor shows; it hints at values. It does not display; it semanticizes.” So you can judge a book by its cover, but only if you have a “semiotic toolkit” helping you to interpret the messages given by clothing. In the virtual closet of semiofashionandthecity.com are stored suggestions and tips, food for thought about seasonal must-haves and precise directions on dress codes for all circumstances, from kids’ fashion to maternity style; from seductive lingerie to advices for masking wide hips, and a lot more.