October 25, 2010

Bargain Balmania

So this is what I wore to the VINCE. x 944 party.
Too bad I don't have hot doodz taking pictures of me everywhere I go.

Ribbon Tee and Boots by Burberry Prorsum, Denim Trousers by Hussein Chalayan, Double Breasted Blazer by Balmain Zara

Now you will notice the close resemblance of the blazer I am wearing to one designed by Christophe Decarnin for Balmain. It is no secret that fast fashion power houses like H&M, Zara, and Topman "draw inspiration" from high fashion looks. I am not one for knock offs, and counterfeit goods are the bane of my existence, but with prices at the house of Balmain escalating at unreasonable levels I could not pass up this cute little jacket. Aside from the fabrication and the placement of the emblem and a few buttons, the same look is achieved. Look, Mom! I saved $2,800!!

(top to bottom) Balmain vs. Zara Blazer and Sweater/ iStyle Shop Denim

Zara is currently in a state of Balmania. Much of their look book offers variations of Decarnin's designs at the fraction of the price. One could argue that Balmain's prices are so high because the quality is much higher. I could see that, and I often use that argument for any designer goods I purchase. However, I had to wonder how much greater is the quality of a $700 distressed-with-so-many-holes-its-practically-fishnet t-shirt from Balmain compared to a $20 distressed-with-so-many-holes-its-practically-fishnet t-shirt from Zara? This occurred to me when I was shopping for Balmain's famous motorcycle jeans. It might be worth it to some to own the real deal denim at $1,200, but being a recent college grad, my mother's son, and an American, I could never live it down - so I went with the Asian-models version on eBay. Because jeans (something I can miraculously tear crotch holes in without fail - give it time) are not Birkins (an icon of style and the only handbag that appreciates in value).

Whatever, good thing there are places like Zara since I guess I am not rich enough fortunate enough to shop Balmain.

- jerome

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