The idea that trends that trickle down from the catwalk has become one of fashion’s most enduring truisms. But does it hold water?
The Devil Wears Prada, by Lauren Weisberger, was published in 2003, and the film version was released three years later, yet one line continues to resonate. Or rather, one concise theory involving a blue jumper that claims to illustrate the structural and economic connection between high fashion and the everyday, referred to in popular culture as the “cerulean blue” theory.
If you have seen the film you will remember the speech in which icy fashion magazine editor Miranda Priestley (Meryl Streep) articulates to her cynical assistant, Andy (Anne Hathaway), precisely why the younger woman is wearing a blue jumper: “In 2002, Oscar de la Renta did a collection of cerulean gowns, and then I think it was Yves Saint Laurent – wasn’t it? – who showed cerulean military jackets … so you’re wearing a sweater that was selected for you by the people in this room.”