Uniforms have a special place in our society, but their function is both broader and more complex than what strikes one at first glance. It is the uniform’s diverse characteristics that form the basis of Carry on Collection.
Clothes are the concrete garments that we can put on and take off and that can be described from an objective perspective. Fashion, on the other hand, is the immaterial value and the symbols that come with the garment. In the world of uniforms the boundary between fashion and clothes becomes more evident than anywhere else. The values and symbols are evident and direct. There is seldom any doubt as to what they mean. This is unique to the uniform. In the fashion world, the boundary between clothes and fashion is seldom as clear. Using uniforms as a starting point I have examined the relationship between clothes and fashion, between the practical functionality of clothes and their social functions.
I have deconstructed and reconstructed status symbols within the contextual framework of the uniform and have carefully worked out a colour map that differs from what one normally associates with uniforms. My process has aimed at exploring how the social function of a garment relates to its practical functionality.
Sanna Kvist, Astrid Olsson.