So, in honor of that, I've pulled up twice the number of randomness from my over-crowded head to share with you. I hope its both appealing, and informative. So today, Happy Birthday Attire's Mind! And here come 24 wildly divergent things to tempt, tease, and hopefully please you.
We've got a lot to cover, so lets get to it!
This just makes me smile. The utter simplicity of this, with the classic counterbalance of black and white, is absolute perfection of cut, fit and correct textile use. Its classy, elegant and could be worn with equal grace by women of many ages. Perfect editing of elements down to essentials. Bravo to Narciso Rodrguez for making this come to life.
For this second section, I will be chronicling the 10 designers, and believe me it took some winnowing to get it down to 10, who most profoundly affected me, my understanding of apparel, and my own approach to design in my work as a sometime costumer. If I could distill all ten of these artists into one person, and you could see that person's work, you'd have a good look into my head, and what is the core of my sensibility.
I'll work chronologically, since rating the actual influence of each designer on me is beyond me right now. Other designers, like Alexander McQueen, Gareth Pugh, Guo Pei, and Iris Van Herpen, will have to wait upon their time for another set of accolades. These ten got here first. Sorry, kids.
Four designers of influence to me appeared in the 30s, almost concurrently, so I'm going to treat them alphabetically.
Cristobal Balengiaga, Adalusian born, and possessed of a ravenous desire to edit, edit, edit, took an innate understanding of the interface between architecture and apparel, and turned it into clothing that moved us forward, broke barriers, and yet at the same time gave women a sense of grandeur, and grace. His work informed, and effected the work of countless others over decades of time, and continues to do so. Clothing walking runways today, bears his mark of sublime, and effortless simplicity, and formal beauty.
Charles James, who learned some of what he knew at the knees of Cristobal Balenciaga, took the idea of the intersection between architecture and apparel, and ran with it. Under his relentlessly exacting hands, his hands that demanded absolute perfection, regardless of cost, he created garments that stand today as some of the most extraordinary things fashioned by man, regardless of discipline. His understanding of the qualities of textiles, what they were capable of, what they could be made to achieve, was beyond simple craft. He understood the weave and heft of fabrics in a way no one has before, and still has not since. You could look at his work and say it was unique to its time, but much of what is designed now, is in part due to the work of this deeply troubled, profound genius.
In the later 1940s, someone burst on the scene who changed everything. Gone was the easy life of Chanel, or the witty insouciance of Schiaparelli. We had been through a devastating war. Millions of innocents had died for no reason. We had suffered privations as a result, and what we needed, wanted more than anything at the time, was a sense of continuance, of classic beauty, and of abundance, after so many years of lack. So, here comes Christian Dior. Following on the heels of other designers who had presented these ideas too early, he hit the mark, right on the button, and transformed how women looked for nearly two decades. A good deal of what we perceive as classically feminine today is owed to Mr Dior. For me, he is the bridge point from what was, and what is. His work, and what it represents, is how we thought about ourselves, and how we viewed women in other times. That said, a good deal of his work is simply put, ravishingly lovely.
If after a whole year of this, and in particular, after this post, if you don't see what I'm about, then I guess I'll just have to keep at it till you do. And please, allow me to give you, each and every one of you my sincere thanks for coming here and reading what I post. Its my pleasure to share this with you, and I can only hope its been as much fun for you, as it continues to be for me.