11 March 2006

Style Icon, Pt. 2

I was going to do Style Icon, Pt. 2 about Björk, but that's going to have to be Style Icon, Pt. 3. Style Icon, Pt. 2 is about me. Is that self-aggrandizing? Who cares? I was getting dressed for a Public Allies event last night and realized I should talk about myself as a Style Icon because I am killing it. Yesterday I wore not one, but two bangin outfits. The first part of Friday I wore a pair of jeans, rust-colored Royal Elastics, an Elmer Fudd hat I found in Madison, a navy blue quilted jacket with a pink flower pattern, and a turquoise jacket under that. For the evening event, I wore one of my Super Secret Vintage Dresses from the 1940s with a pair of Frye boots from the 1970s. I considered wearing the pair of Camper mary-janes I have for a very Björk-like look, but decided on the boots. This made me realize I am a thoughtful or clever dresser. I will explain why. The dress was black with these sort of kimono-like sleeves and two sets of pleats at the skirt. Someone who doesn't know much about clothes might think the dress was, in fact, from the 1970s because that decade was sort of retro with an Edwardian look and lots of drapey-ness. So, wearing these 1970s boots with a dress someone could mistake for 1970s was brainy. Also, my hair was cornrowed (snaps to my girl Shana for hooking up that joint) and secured with these black hairsticks--which played off the kimono sleeves.
When I look back on my style history, if you will, I realize that I've been a style icon in the making. I had my prom dress made by a seamstress. I had another dress made for me. The past week or so I've been trying to remember for what occasion. I picked the material--black with small gold flowers. I ended up selling this dress to a clothes-trading store in college. When I was 12, I badgered my 4-H leader into giving me her daughter's dress from the 1950s and can-can. At 12, I was completely obsessed with the 1950s because I was mainlining re-runs of The Donna Reed Show on Nickelodeon. The dress was pale green with a darker green watercolor-like pattern. Cleverly, I wore this dress with a pair of grey-green flats (Flats, people, flats!! I was 12 and I knew to wear the full 1950s skirt with flats!) from Walmart. I wore this outfit to a tea (!) for my Home Ec class. I had this other slubby-weave pink ensemble (it may have been linen). I have no idea where I got that from. In the late 1980s, vintage wasn't cool--it wasn't even vintage; it was second-hand, and middle-schoolers want everything new from the mall. But I was totally worshipping at Donna's altar. Around this age, I was also poring over this book about English costume from 1900 to 1950. I checked this book out repeatedly. I think this book was by C. Willett Cunnington, a costume historian. I don't remember the name, just that it had a pink dust jacket.
It irritates me when people like Kate Moss are called icons. How hard can it be to slap together designer shit that's new every season?

No comments:

Post a Comment

Want to continue the discourse or share an insight? Please comment.