Good websites for fashion-designer guidance?
February 16, 2015 3:13 PM   Subscribe

Is there a sort of Pandora for clothes? A site that identifies fashion designers with similar styles and recommends them for people who know little about fashion?

I don't know a huge amount about fashion, and don't ordinarily spend a huge amount on clothes. But I am occasionally drawn to the style of one designer or another (and then I either find their stuff at consignment shops or on eBay or whatever). For instance, I noticed recently that I love the clean minimal lines in some of Isabel Marant's clothes. But I don't know what else I might like and I'm not sure how to figure that out.

So I'd love a website for the non-fashion-nerd that can identify similarities among designers, or whether there's a cheaper brand that has a similar aesthetic, or the fact that Forever 21 just knocked off her stuff this season or whatever. But essentially just a super-basic "if you like this, you'll like that" kind of algorithm for people who really are not obsessed enough to read fashion blogs.

Does this exist? I feel like this question is so basic, like asking 'how can I figure out what bands I'd like?' - but I'm actually not having a lot of luck coming up with an answer, so I thank you for knowing more than I do.
posted by catesbie to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (6 answers total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
Polyvore sort-of does this, on an item-by-item basis. I chose an Isabel Marant shirt at random, and i fyou scroll down you see similar shirts, others that people who liked that one liked, etc. People put together collections and styling ideas, and searching descriptive terms is pretty good ("chunky blue necklace" ... "art deco skirt" ... etc). I've had pretty good luck when I see an expensive designer THING that I like, looking it up on Polyvore or typing in descriptive terms and finding similar, less-expensive pieces.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 4:01 PM on February 16, 2015 [1 favorite]

I don't know of a website that does this, but you can certainly reverse-engineer something of the kind by looking at the websites of stores that sell her clothes. Off the top of my head, I'd look at bird, frances may, and steven alan (who is a designer you will probably like, but who also sells other people's clothes sometimes). You can also try searching for her clothes on eBay, and seeing what other suggested searches pop up. Results, I expect, will include APC, rag & bone, rachel comey, and madewell, in addition to the already mentioned steven alan.

(btw, Marant did a line for H&M, and you can sometimes find those things on eBay for relatively little).
posted by dizziest at 5:27 PM on February 16, 2015

I think Modista does what you want, but only for shoes.
posted by joan cusack the second at 10:21 PM on February 16, 2015

I would look at the French labels Maje, Sandro and Iro for the boho/hippie/rock star type look which applies to a lot of Marant stuff.. I feel like some of this look is not as popular as it was a few years ago so you can actually buy affordable pieces from a consignment store here.. the Etoile line runs a little larger in sizing and has some really oversized items, the main line is often kind of tiny.

if you want fast fashion that does clean/minimal I'd go to Zara and COS
posted by citron at 5:44 AM on February 17, 2015

There's an IOS app called ASAP54 that will do a reverse image search for you.

The less specific you are, the better the results. If you're looking for a very exact pattern you might go crazy looking for it, but if you're looking for something that's easy to describe - say, a gold scarf - you can almost always put your finger on what you want.

What I do is to just search obsessively. If I don't find something on ASAP54 - often it's past the season for a given item anyway - I take as many keywords as I can find and I search and I search and I search on eBay, by category, by color, by description. I can often find something that's close enough if I can't even find The Thing.
posted by tel3path at 5:48 AM on February 17, 2015

Shop Style is very good at this. I use their mobile app and I get consistently high-quality "other items like this" results under the current item. Their mix of high-low prices is excellent too.
posted by rada at 9:22 AM on February 17, 2015

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