My Love For Fashion
I’m definitely not your typical fashion-loving blogger. I don’t usually read Vogue or Elle unless I’m in a waiting room or I have a long train journey and need something light (at least in terms of ease-of-reading – often I regret buying them later because of how damn heavy they are to carry) to read that’ll last a few hours. My wonky back makes me a difficult fashion consumer, as it’s quite difficult to find clothes that hang correctly on me, especially dresses and tailoring, I have a wardrobe full of skirts and tops, and I tend to wear something forever if it suits me, whether it’s fashionable or not. If there’s a style that suits me particularly well on trend and in all the shops, I try to take advantage of this and buy several.
My style icons are women who wear beautiful clothing that I love, and those who can put together fabulous outfits, but I don’t necessarily dress in a similar way to these people. Having a non-standard body shape, much of the time I’ll see an item of clothing I love but it’ll look terrible on me! (After 28 years of experience most of the time I can tell this without having to see the garment in person, which makes Online shopping so much easier). I may occasionally buy a piece I’ve seen on a blogger I admire, for example, or something similar, but the chances that I could style it the same way are very slim. My style is very much my own by default – if I copied other people I’d look seriously awkward 99% of the time!
This isn’t a pity post, far from it. I actually rather like the fact that nobody could ever accuse me of trying to copy someone else’s style! I would love (one day, can’t afford it right now!) to work with a professional stylist sometime, to see how they would work with my somewhat unique features, and perhaps that’s something to save for. It would certainly make for an interesting blog post! (Hell, if anyone knows anyone who’s brilliant and charges reasonable rates, drop me a comment / email!)
So it may seem like I’m something of a glutton for punishment, a fashion masochist who sits and watches the streams of the shows, fawning over all the pretty dresses she couldn’t wear even if she could afford them. The shows are supposed to be aspirational though, aren’t they? They’re for inspiration, not direct imitation. I also adore all the candid shots of bloggers and editors posing in their stylish best between shows. I guess part of it is voyeurism – it’s all about glimpsing a little bit of someone else’s life and personality through what they wear, which is also why I love it when people show off their home decor and the contents of their handbags on their blogs . Ultimately though, I am firmly on the YES side of the fashion-as-art argument. As Stanley says in The Devil Wears Prada:
[…]some of the greatest artists of the century? Halston, Lagerfeld, de la Renta. And what they did, what they created was greater than art because you live your life in it.
I don’t think many people can challenge the fact that it requires a creative mind and artistic talent to design and bring to life the amazing, intricate and multi-faceted garments in the couture shows, but beautiful fabric prints, seams placed to perfectly flatter a woman (or man)’s body, it’s all artistic work. Putting an outfit together too, requires a certain understanding of colour, draping and texture to pull together the kind of looks that the more admired fashion bloggers are known for. The bloggers I admire represent between them a tremendous disparity of styles, all of which I take inspiration from in one way or another, but I’d have a lot of trouble singling one out as my main inspiration, or similar to my “look”. I enjoy outfits in the same way as I enjoy art, as something beautiful to be admired, and something fun to create.
I may not fit the fashion “mould”, but that doesn’t mean I can’t get creative with what I wear. I used to be terribly self-conscious, using clothes to hide my shape, only to realise that trying to cover perceived “flaws” with baggy fabrics, etc. only draws attention to them. Now I prefer misdirection! A really bright, eyecatching skirt, something (anything!) sequinned – I adore sequins, I’d wear them on everything if I could – or an amazing accessory for example, is so much better at drawing the eye away from the bits you don’t want people looking at. This revelation alone I think really fostered my love for fashion and style. My boyfriend now despairs at the size of my wardrobe, the amount of bags I own and the fact that there are miscellaneous pieces of jewellery all over the flat where I’ve taken a ring off to put hand cream on, or removed my necklace because I kept accidentally dipping it in my drink (you’d be surprised how often that happens). I still wear a lot of black (I’m really quite fond of my inner teenage goth and don’t want to kill her entirely) but I’m no longer scared of bright pink.
You’re unlikely to see me running around London Fashion Week any time soon, for one thing I don’t think my health is up to it, although by all accounts I think my usual “lean up against wall, pretend to send really long text message” tactic when I need a rest but don’t want people asking me if I’m OK wouldn’t look very out of place. I am however, appreciating it vicariously through other bloggers, and watching the streams from the comfort of my laptop whilst nursing a cup of tea. I might not get a goodie bag for that, but I don’t get blisters either!
Oh, and in case anyone was wondering, my favourite show this season so far is Alexander McQueen, it’s all absolutely stunning! Congratulations if you read all that!