“Does anybody know who Wallis Simpson is?” I once asked and got a big stare back….I understand that women, who influenced style during the last 100 hundred years is not essential to ones knowledge of modern history; but could we have a cheat sheet made up (since there are not that many) for the younger generation. These women represented style not only with their clothes but their lifestyle as well. Wallis Simpson was not a women that lived a commendable life, neither did Coco Channel, but they influenced “women’s fashion” during a period of major economic turmoil (the 30’s) in a way that would truly be relevant today. Only today they would not have to compete with the tonnage of CHEAP merchandise that has flooded the retail environment.
For many years there have been several trends that don’t feel right to me. When there is so many indicators that the economy is weak, why does the fashion world promote flashy, aggressive clothes as if we are living during boom times? I think I know why…it’s because we are a Global Society now and fashion houses are catering to emerging markets. The US is not the major consumer it once was. We are down on the list and our number one concern is how cheap can we get it…..not how it’s made or who made it , or how long will it last (style and make)…but what percentage discount can we get it. When was the last time you read an article on how good clothing is made? When have you seen a segment on the “Today Show” about how to buy a garment that takes months to design and make or a segment on clothes you bought ten years ago that are relevant today because they were designed and made well. OK enough lecturing…now back to Wallis Simpson:
Wallis Simpson Married the Abdicated King Of England, Edward Duke Of Windsor
The 30’s were a time of elegance and style, just look at the dress Mrs. Simpson(Duchess of Windsor) is wearing in the picture above. You can see the how luxurious the fabric is by the way it drapes on her upper body under the matador Jacket and the skirt falls gracefully from the waist down. The 30’s were also a time of austerity, a time of quiet refinement. The Styling of the dress covers the whole body, almost prudish (and she was far from being a prude). So we finally get to the point of this blog which is trends today do not yet reflect the socio-economic times of today. But Louis has moved strongly in this direction, without the support of the media, for a few seasons very successfully. We made a trip to London(ironically) in January and found some great lines that we felt moved in this direction of elegance and refinement. Here are few pics to help you see what we are talking about.
Alessandra Rich really Captures the Mood, no?
Alessandra Rich is an Italian living in London. She know quality like an Italian and she gets the design feel from living in London…a perfect match.
Lee Klabin's Cut and Drape along with Great Fabrics Make this Dress
check the dress out from the back
Lee Klabin has been making boned, rock and roll wedding dresses for the lucky women in London for many years. This is her first season making ready to wear and Louis is her first American store. The quality shows when you zip up the asymmetrical zipper and it fits like a glove….and the midnight duchess satin is delicious.
Osman is the Perfect Blend of the 30's and the 70's
Osman is a Cambridge educated designer out of London who again, only worked with private clients until this season. Originally from Afghanistan, he has a retro esthetic with a modern twist.
Well this will be the first of many blogs on this subject. We are in a time of refinement and appreciation…our new words for this decade…we better start understanding the meaning of these words or we will miss the point of living well.