Sheep magazine Archive 3: issues 18-24

AlfRodchenko

Lefty online magazine: issue 18, December 2016 to issue 24, May 2017

6

It’s worth paying more for quality

When Vivienne Westwood launched a collection in 2010, she said we

should not buy new clothes for six months. ‘My message is: choose well and

buy less,’ she said – as if to suggest you should buy one Westwood dress

rather than filling Primark trolleys regularly with disposable tat. But, Dame

Vivienne, sustainable consumerism isn’t that simple. A couple of years after

I interviewed Westwood about her fashion worldview, a friend bought me a

Vivienne Westwood watch. It was beautiful and I was happy, thinking it was

built to last. Then the numbers fell off, the strap broke and the clock hands

collapsed within a year. Next time I need a new watch, I’ll try Poundland.

22

Just as, in some religions, an object invested with supernatural powers

becomes a fetish for those who worship it, so commodities under capitalism

are accorded magical powers and illusory autonomy. The Vivienne

Westwood brand had, for me, just such magical powers. Even when its logo

appeared on a dodgy watch made under licence. Reading the Frankfurt

School disabused me of this fetish. When it comes to shopping, I don’t trust

anyone anymore, not even one-time punk couturiers.

7

There are things that we ‘must have’

Hollister has a range of must-have T-shirts. Business Insider can direct you to

a list of 20 must-have tech accessories for under £20 (including a multi-port

USB wall charger, armband phone case and a carphone mount). And then

there’s musthave.co.uk, whose beauty products include a 15ml pot of Truefitt

& Hill Moustache Wax for £17.50. What do all these must-haves have in

common? You don’t need them.

SHEEP IN THE ROAD : NUMBER 18

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