I just returned from a quick trip to San Francisco/Oakland.
Seattle is a place where people mostly dress according to what is going on with the weather, and in doing so tend to dress for function rather than fashion...understandable. My father's famous words continue to ring true for me, "form follows function." So for me it is really important that the form is functional but also beautiful and/or interesting.
As we walked and drove the streets of San Francisco/Oakland/Berkeley, I found that the same is true for those cities as well. The fashion sense was really not very different from what I see in Seattle. Perhaps there are pockets of more stylish people, the ones that follow trends or put themselves together in a little more together way, but that is also true for Seattle. There will always be those who are more fashion conscious, and those who are more into the functionality of what they put on in the morning.
I think it is interesting to see how fashion trends migrate and change according to the needs of a particular population. I follow several fashion blogs, and recently one of the blogs has been showing the common folk of Burma, and Southeast Asia. They would most likely be considered poor by our standards..yet what I find interesting is this blogger portrays them as somehow cool in the way they are wearing their clothing, and I get it. However I am not sure how I feel about how he is doing this. Is he trying to say, 'hey look at these people, aren't they beautiful no matter their circumstances', or if he is trying to start some sort of 'trend' by portraying them as the next great thing, even though these people are dressing like this not out of choice necessarily, but because it is all they have. They probably don't have a closet full of choices or a cute vintage shop down the street that they can fill in their look. What you see is what you get...this is true for most of the world.
I suppose that this idea of form and function is how we all live. It doesn't matter if you are living the life, or simply living a life. If your world requires four inch heels, or no shoes, designer dresses everyday, or whatever is clean....it really doesn't matter....