|UK Vogue June 2012|
Some little black dress, eh?!
When I had my first job after college, I worked in a department store. I didn't have a lot of money or many clothes. My mother would sew me up skirts, jackets, and suits. Then I found, at a re-sale shop, strings of pearls for a buck a strand most likely. I wanted the Chanel look. I worked in one of the suburban stores and most that I worked with thought that I was a little 'off.' I wasn't as interested in Jones of New York or Ralph Lauren or whatever it was that they were wearing. I wanted to wear what I saw in the magazines. Thankfully a woman from the downtown store swung through, met me, and took me away to the main store were I fit in much better with the more cosmopolitan crew. Everyone there was trying for a 'look' or just trying to figure it out.
In college, during my 'new wave/punk' days, I didn't wear my hair much differently than the model in this ad ... my mom would give me a perm so that I would have curly hair, and then I would go to the beauty and have the sides sheared off. Once I even put a streak of black through the ginger of my locks. I had a beautifully gently worn suit coat of my dad's ... it was checkered grey and blue, not black, wool. I wore it with everything, including an old pair of his pleated, pegged trousers that I would cinch up with a belt. I bought an old pair of Capezio dance shoes from my suite mate, Chandra of New York and that really added to the look. Of course I would also wear one of my dad's old skinny ties. My favorite, and I still have it, is bluish grey with a spot of red in it. Really cool tie. Man, I wish I had a picture of myself in that outfit ... I think that it was one of my favorites from that time ... of all time. I can see myself so clearly walking along the tracks in a college town on my way to ... somewhere ... a light drizzle on a autumnal afternoon and smelling the wool rise up.
Oh, I don't want this purse ... this white purse. And I couldn't wear the bodysuit. But I can do the mood ... the juxtaposition of formal, linen cloth and crystal, and the rip of punk, a tear of red (her lips), is something that I can imagine. And that's all it takes to build a great look.