Trendy Vs. Timeless: How To Know The Difference When Building A Wardrobe

As you face trends that are coming and going, finding your personal style can feel like a journey. To remain fashionable, you might feel pressured to follow each fad as it comes, but when you're looking for long-lasting styles you'll be able to wear over and over again, it can sometimes be hard to tell what will stick and what will pass. In other words, it can be difficult to differentiate trendy fashion and timeless fashion. Many fashion experts recommend opting for slow fashion over that which is trending, but ultimately, the choice is yours, and it begins with learning to tell the difference.

Judith Leiber Couture points out that there are a number of advantages and disadvantages to both kinds of fashion, so becoming aware of these can be a starting point as you navigate finding your true style. Knowing about what is trendy and what is timeless is especially helpful when you're trying to create a wardrobe full of things you will love and feel confident in. As you curate these pieces, think about their characteristics when it comes to what makes them trendy or timeless and how that can impact your style or your personal preferences. Ultimately, you want to have a closet full of items that work the best for you.

Trends and fast fashion

When something is trendy in fashion, it tends to have a short life cycle in the market. Often, trendy clothes are associated with fast fashion in which garments are designed, produced, and sold as quickly as possible. This is done to follow the trends as they happen to meet consumer demand at the same speed. Trendy items and fast fashion go hand-in-hand because they follow the height of a look's popularity; the goal is to meet the demand before that hype dies down. According to fashion website Good On You, fast fashion is characterized by a quick turnaround time, cheap manufacturing and materials, and limited quantities. A Magazine explains that fast fashion tends to be mass-produced and often contributes to large-scale wastage and exploitative labor.

Many people follow trends in an effort to feel fashionable or to make an impression on others, but an ongoing debate between fashion-lovers ponders the question of whether it actually accomplishes that. "I don't know who needs to hear this, but you can have an entire closet full of the latest trends and refresh your closet every couple of months to keep up, that does not equate to having style," fashion forecaster Mandy Lee tells Elle

Following this argument is the concept of "timeless fashion." Often, those who follow fashion trends as they come may also consider timeless fashion to be outdated. On the contrary, many people consider timeless fashion to be the epitome of style, and the opposite of fast fashion trends.

What is timeless fashion?

Timeless fashion includes a variety of garments and items that can stand the test of time. Essentially, these never go out of style and always outlive the seasonal trends. But trendy and timeless fashion are not always going head to head. Sometimes, fashion that is trending in the moment does have the intention to be timeless, or does go on to be timeless. 

Timeless style is something that you can make work time and time again, giving you the opportunity to build a wardrobe tailored to your preferences. It helps you maximize the use of your pieces for as long as possible without sacrificing how many looks you can get out of them. Often, timeless fashion can be considered the wardrobe basics that can be molded into any look. Usually, this is through slow fashion or something known as a "capsule wardrobe" (via Modern Minimalism). It is a careful, intentional curation of your wardrobe with interchangeable quality pieces to be able to create several different outfits at any time, whether they're part of a trend or not.