We wouldn’t be doing what we do unless we thought there was some vague shadow of hope for Russia’s future, that the people of Russia were worth fighting for. And we wouldn’t hesitate to report good news about Russia, if there were any. Most days, because of malignancy of the Putin regime, there simply isn’t. But here’s some we’re glad to mention.
The Moscow Times reports on a tiny but determined trend in Russia cyberspace indicating the development of online markets for the Russian fashion industry. In particular, it points to a Live Journal Blog called Show Room Chic in which Dima Sher, owner of a vintage clothing bouttique called Shtripka, created to offer a forum to up-and-coming Russian designers. SRC has even been linked to online commerce, so the designers make sales as well as networking connections. SRC is loaded with high-quality fashion photographs made on the cheap, like the one shown above, and represents number of garments that appear quite well made an even, in some case, chic. It’s an example of what Russians can do at their cooperative, socializing best.
To be sure, these efforts are minor blips on the fashion radar even in Russia, much less in the world. But they show promise. The websites are named in English and the presentation is Western in its essence. There’s no reason why some of these garments could not be sold in the West.
If only the Russians would learn from these examples. If only they would see that if they purged the KGB from their Kremlin and began taking responsibility for their own lives, living by their constitution rather than using it for toilet paper, they could join the family of civilized nations as unique contributors who could increase the world’s quality of live in many ways.
Instead, the vast majority of Russians allow a vast network of corruption to persist that inevitably crushes small businesses like these, which is why you won’t find Russian-made or Russian-designed garments on many store shelves in the West.