Miuccia Prada has an unusual history for a fashion designer. She has a Ph.D. in political science. She spent five years training and performing as a mime. She takes fashion seriously—very seriously—but she can be blunt talking about trends. “Look,” she says, “after long is short, after white is black.” She is much more interested in talking about the role that clothes play in the lives of the people who wear them.
“Clothes have nothing to do with success. You can dress however you want and still be successful. Basically, clothes are a pleasure,” Prada says.
“And as a luxury item, clothes are the cheapest,” she continues. “Why are people scandalized by spending money on clothes? I think there is something against fashion in the world. Everybody is so passionate about this, there’s a resistance to fashion, an idea that to love fashion is to be stupid. I think this is for two reasons. One is because clothes are very intimate. When you get dressed, you are making public your idea about yourself, and I think that embarrasses people. And two, I think that fashion is seen as women’s work,” she says. “My conclusion is that because fashion touches your intimate life, it embarrasses people.”