Wearable Ideas

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Art / cosmetics / culture / Fashion / history / makeup / photography

Dear L,

What a day! I have to begin by apologising for the over-one-hundred text messages I sent you regarding the torrent of Met Gala 2015 photos which have flooded my . . . everything. I think I could boil it down to the fact that Hailee Steinfeld, Zendaya, and Imogen Poots were flawless.

Imogen Poots at the 2015 Met Gala, wearing Alberta Ferretti.

Imogen Poots at the 2015 Met Gala, wearing Alberta Ferretti.

The evening got me thinking about how we are able to convey not only an idea of ourselves, but ourselves within an idea (I know that sounds dull. Stay with me here).

The theme of the Gala was ‘China: Through the Looking Glass’, a concept which was interpreted, abandoned and toyed with by all who attended (and the millions of people who worked to get them there). The most interesting outfit of the evening, from this perspective, was Poppy Delevigne’s.

Poppy Delevigne in Marchesa

Poppy Delevigne in Marchesa

To me, this was a seriously witty choice. Not only is the dress covered in Poppies, but the Poppy flower is inextricably tied to Opium – a drug which plays a large role in not only China’s modern history, but Western society’s view of China itself. Remember ‘Opium’ by Yves Saint Laurent? Opium has become a symbol for the dangerous -and dangerously attractive- side of Asia. Whilst that sounds very heavy-handed for a gala, Poppy proves here that nothing in fashion is more effective than a generous dose of rebellion.

All in all, the gala is an important reminder of how to pull old ideas, places, or eras, into our everyday wardrobe. . . and that brings me back to those 70’s trends we noticed at Fashion Week. How can we bring the idea of retro-ness into a look without merely donning flares? I contend that we should look to texture and palette.

I start with a few favourite icons. Lately, I find myself wanting to be somewhere between Bianca Jagger and Edie Sedgwick. I mean. I don’t get there, but that’s where I want to be.

Bianca Jagger in 'that' Studio 54 photo.

Bianca Jagger in ‘that’ Studio 54 photo.


Edie Sedgwick

When I think of Bianca, I think straight falling cuts (in particular, those amazing white suits), and a natural, super-glowy complexion (one could almost say ‘dewy’. She was so ahead of her time). Edie’s look is characterised more by BANG! EYES! a very Twiggy-thin pixie frame, and wilder, bold-printed outfits.

Somewhere in there, you have to fit you as well. In fact, that should still be 90%.

A few favourite pieces and a favourite chair.

A few favourite pieces and a favourite chair.

Pictured above, I’m wearing a Dion Lee turtle-neck jumper and a suede skirt from Zara. Both the wool and the suede are very 70’s-friendly, but there also versatile and don’t make me look like I’m going to an Austin Power’s Party.

Having recently been converted to a beauty product addict by the religiously-followed Into the Gloss, my new favourite way to pay homage to the past is to mix up my make-up routine.

The side-part-aholic finally lets her hair part in the middle for a more convincing Woodstock vibe.

The side-part-aholic finally lets her hair part in the middle for a more convincing Woodstock vibe.

Hair is the best place to start. Just by adding a bit of texturising spray and giving up my usual 5-cm-to-the-side (that was painful), you’re more likely to think that I partied with Ringo Starr and co. . . . . . . ?

Please say yes?

Anyway, with just a slightly larger dose of coral tones / bronzers than usual, a lip stain, dark brows, smoky-smudged eyes and the closest you can get to a cat-eye (is it possible to get worse at that?!) you’ll be channeling the perfect mix of the dishevelled screen siren, and the modern woman you are. In other words, whatever ‘idea’ of yourself you feel like today.

Who knows, tomorrow you might use the same strategy to achieve a wearable Geisha vibe. . . challenge on, L? 😉

Love B


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