I spend an outrageous amount of time looking at fashion I can't afford. Designer clothing is not cheap. There's no way around that, unless you are a model or fraudster or something. I usually only purchase high end brands during end-of-season sales. Designer clothing is expensive for a few reasons.
Firstly, you are paying for a piece of well designed, quality, in-season clothing from a high-end brand.
Secondly, Designer brands have a standard of quality to live up to in the production of there ready-to-wear clothing. The quality of the materials used is very important. There are months devoted to sampling and testing different materials for a collection. Buying a large amount of fine materials is very expensive, which contributes to the retail price. Manufacturing is also a huge factor in the process. There are many, many costs in manufacturing that contribute to the retail price. Like most mass produced clothing, certain pieces will be manufactured by cheap, lower skill level factory workers. However most designer clothing is made by skilled workers who are well trained at their craft, and well paid for their work. For example, Louis Vuitton manufactures their ready-to-wear lines in France and Italy exclusively. Manufacturing in a developed country with skilled workers is very expensive for a brand.
Thirdly you are paying the mark-up price, as well as the substantial amount of tax added to the marked-up price. First the brand applies a mark-up to the wholesale price of a piece of clothing, then retailers apply a retail mark-up to the wholesale price. The retail mark-up for brand-name designer clothing is typically around 2.3x. This mark up insures that even if the piece of clothing were to sell at 50% off, the retailer would still turn a profit.
Personally, I can only justify buying a piece of clothing if I know it is well made. I'd rather have a few quality pieces than more, cheaper, poor quality pieces. However, there are more affordable options that I like. For example, some inexpensive brands I like are Topman, Uniqlo, and American Apparel. I do a lot of vintage shopping as well. It's cheap, fun, and sometimes you find some really nice clothing.
Stimulating music is a key ingredient in fashion presentations. Music and fashion go hand in hand. Whether it's designers being inspired by music, or musicians being inspired by fashion, they compliment each other. Designers put there ideas into physical form, and producers channel those ideas into musical form for a fashion show. The design process is very much influenced by music. Designers will often choose specific music to play in there studio while they work on a collection. There are also designers whose collections are heavily influenced by the fashions of musicians from the past or present. For example, Hedi Slimane's collections for Saint Laurent are influenced by the style of young glam rock musicians (such as 70's David Bowie). Music evokes a mood or feeling that adds to the narrative of a fashion collection, as well as creating a rhythm for models walk to.
The Wallpaper Magazine SoundCloud page has uploaded the soundtracks of some of my favourite fashion shows, from recent seasons.