Saturday, 16 October 2010
Friday, 15 October 2010
Tuesday, 12 October 2010
Many fashions are popular and many different cultures have different fashions at any given time. The word fashion can literally mean 'a habitual practice' - but, somewhat ironically, fashion is in fact in a constant state of flux, and the people who go against the established manner, those who go for the 'weird' rather than the traditional, are the icons that prompt the next fashion. Fashion is prompted by what is rudimentally style that has not recently been in fashion.
Consider this then - Style and fashion are separate entities. Style can be fashion, but fashion is not always style. In side-lining fashion and giving style main focus, an era's bias can be removed. And what does that mean? It means we can be free to appreciate the art, joy, self expression, humour and honesty expressed by all those who are or have been dressed in a manner that flows at a distance from fashion's rushing channel.
Well that’s the start of it. But what do I mean by eccentric style? Style usually has a subtle beauty to it - but in the circus-ring of life, the vast audience finds itself awed and inspired by THE ENTERTAINERS - Those who go beyond the typical and traditional, who don't walk along the ground but fly through the air on a trapeze. As sequins catch the light, it is these 'entertainers' who have the ability to dazzle the eyes of expectation and to inspire the future.
So, yes, keep an eye on fashion. It can be a great chart to peruse for ideas. But certainly don’t be afraid to mix it up a bit. Find the innocent, unbiased and unstereotyped joy in clothes that a child has in playing dress-up with its mother’s wardrobe.
A little of the eccentric can be found with unusual fabrics, silhouettes, a hat, a bag, an outlandish necklace or quirky earrings – have fun with it! And if you’re more timid, perhaps try a little quirky accessory on top of a more traditional outfit – add a headband, a bold piece of jewellery, a full skirt or sculptured heels. Experiement!
I read somewhere, a long time ago, about a woman who used to dress boldly, with large hats often seeming more like sculpture than attire - one specific hat of hers featured a scale model of a ship, a galleon, if I remember rightly. And what did she say of her style? She said she dressed to entertain the world. To give people something different to look at, something interesting and beautiful to appreciate. I forget how correctly I may be remembering this - but perhaps this way of looking at style, fashion and attire in general is a really wonderful and beautifully selfless approach.
So play with it – try something different. Have fun and brighten your day (as well as potentially someone else’s too). It’s an art form. And what is art if it’s not an expression of self?
Judge not least ye be judged.
Walk into a room and give everyone something to talk about ;)
Coming up - 'The Entertainers' (The icons of Eccentric Style)
Thanks for reading,
Monday, 11 October 2010
|Find your feet with these simply fabulous Autumn/Winter Trend shoes which are bang on trend and hot on the high street right now. |
|Tan Ankle Boots from Next. £65. These will be great tucked into jeans, with a white tshirt and a brown leather jacket.|
|The best thing about a LBD is you can wear absolutely any colour shoes with them and this is the pair to go for lovelies. Paired with smokey eyes and Electric Blue eyeliner you won't be wearing them once a blue moon. £24 Next|
|This is a fantastic take on the new Brogue Trend. Brogues are a fantastic alternative to pumps on a cold wet winter's day and the buckle on these makes them cute and feminine rather than 'I borrowed my dad's' shoes. £30 New Look|
|This is a gorgeous combination of the military style boot and the Faux Fur trend which were both rocking the Autumn/winter catwalks. £55 Asos|
|They say 'diamonds are a girl's best friend' but these sparkly beauties can be your next best friend this Autumn. Perfect evening footwear. Love Label at Very.co.uk £45|
|Some darn sexy boots from River island, £74.99. These are the ultimate smart casual pair for your Autumn wardrode, dress them up, dress them down and you still look gorgeous|
|Beautiful 'Fei' Shoes from the Demi-Gods of shoes Jimmy Choo. But at £1095 a time you'd better hope you don't tread in chewing gum.|
Now girlies, don't all rush to the shops at once to buy them. Remember you can internet shop! hehe
Em x x
Let’s start the show. Two little case studies of Eccentric Style - Lennox and Jones. Two potentially controversial but highly inspirational women. Take a look :)
GRACE JONES – A panther, masculine, womanly, athletic, a model/singer/actress, icon and unforgettable. She adopted in the 1970s a severe, androgynous style, with square-cut hair and angular padded clothes. Defining her style are bold shapes, striking unusual silhouettes, and a lot of black and other vampish colours. With fierce accessories galore, including hats, hoods, masks, gloves and shades, she’s often left looking like some kind of outlandish warrior. Being not masculine and not a typical outspoken-but-physically-unable ‘empowered woman’, she is a woman and strong - two independent labels - and her style designates her as such. She is proof you shouldn’t tell any woman what she should be.
ANNIE LENNOX - A real performer, with an amazing voice, stage presence, dignity, sexiness and sophistocation. When performing, she is a chameleon, adopting different personas, often provocative, for different songs. These ‘characters’ include an angel, a showgirl, an 18th Century French Aristocrat, an orange-haired androgynous suit, an obsessive-compulsive middle-class housewife, a blonde Marilyn-Monroe-like sexual vixen, a leather-coated androgynous figure performing to a gang of Hell’s Angels and a masked figure in a space-age ball-gown. Her style revolves around her performances, presenting the theatrical, with dramatic and comedic flourishes, being unafraid to experiement with gender-bending attire – all set off by her strikingly beautiful face and voice. She achieves something that many female performers have failed at – She can express a sexuality and strength, while still remaining dignified, dazzling and fully-dressed. She knows how to be a woman, how to doge stereotype and how to wear a suit.
...I keep using words like ‘masculine’, ‘feminine’ and ‘androgynous’. This is where it gets interesting. (See if you can follow my train of thought.)
Remember, the concepts of 'Masculinity' and 'Femininity' refer to attributes that are indeed associated, but not exclusively, to gender. And what is typically a 'masculine' or 'feminine' characteristic has usually been defined as such by a biased past or at least by a past drastically different from our present state. We are taught that men must be strong and not feel, while women must feel but remain somewhat passive. But let us consider it instead as Yin (‘female’ energy) and Yang (‘masculine’ energy). I was taught a couple of years ago that everyone, regardless of gender, has ‘female’ energies (e.g. emotion, intuitive, receptive, nurturing) and ‘male’ energies (strong, action-oriented, forceful), and that to achieve a balance between the two is to be a rounded person. A Yin/Yang balance means our actions (Yang/’masculine’) support our feelings and heart’s desires (Yin/’feminine’).
This might all sound like pretentious hippy-talk, but basically what I’m saying is that when something is called ‘masculine’ it is not instantly a compliment to a man and a derogative term to a woman (and vice versa for ‘femininity’).
Just think – find a balance. Type into Google Image Search 'Annie Lennox' or 'Grace Jones' and you'll get an idea of what I mean. Emotion and strength. Actions and feelings. One and the other. Yin and Yang. Suit and tie with high heels, pastels with biker boots. It’s all a bit of fun. And it’ll keep the world on its toes :)
Give it a go.