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Alexa Chung Gets to the Root of 'Normcore,' Her Least-Favorite Fashion Trend

In Chung's latest "Future of Fashion" episode for "Vogue" UK, we learn how the founders of K-Hole caused "normcore" to take over the fashion world.

For the latest stop on her journey through New York City's fashion scene in Vogue UK series "Future of Fashion," Alexa Chung traces the "normcore" trend to its apparent origin: the complex minds of brand consultants and K-Hole founders Greg Fong and Emily Segal. (Make sure you've had your morning coffee before watching. Their explanation of this term's evolution is... not simple.)

According to Fong and Segal, K-Hole was inspired by big-name trend forecasting agencies who designers and companies pay thousands of dollars for information on the markets and trends that they're trying to (or should try to) tap into. K-Hole claims to do this job differently by figuring out what's emotionally motivating about trends, which led to the agency's discovery of "normcore," a word/trend-turned-movement that Chung once described to Fashionista (with a hint of her signature sarcasm) as "the most offensive thing," adding, with some seriousness, "It's weird when you're just existing and people outside it gather you up and take away any unique vibe you thought you had."

Although Fong and Segal wanted "normcore" to describe a form of "coolness" rather than a style of clothes, the fashion world ate that new term up and it quickly turned into a what they called a "mega-meme." Chung questions why it hit such a chord with the industry and the two believe it's because of fashion's overdone, hackneyed vocabulary. Their reasoning might have a point: In 2014, "normcore" was so, er, normal in our everyday speak that it was a runner-up in the Oxford English Dictionary's "Word of the Year" shortlist. "Normcore" was tied with "bae," while "vape" took the top spot, so there's that.

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Chung wraps up her conversation with Fong and Segal by trying to help them determine the next movement in fashion. The series host suggests really big sleeves. (Chung also mentions that she is constantly asked about trends and doesn't think they exist.) "I feel like really big sleeves are here," responds Fong. "No, reeeally big ones," quips Chung.

Watch the entire second episode above, in which Chung also delves into the world of fashion PR by chatting with Brian Phillips, the founder of Black Frame.

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Homepage image: Alexa Chung with the founders of K-Hole in "Future of Fashion." Photo: Screengrab/ UK