måndag, februari 11, 2008

Victoria's Sad Secret and Other Notes

Walk into Victoria Secrets lately, and the place looks more like pajama party-land than sexy runway or Super Bowl Party hubba-hubba. All those sweatpants, all the "PINK" plastered across the ass of everything. Bubble gum, bright stripes, and polka dots, oh my. I've noticed. My girlfriends have noticed. I don't know if guys have noticed. They have a tendency to be an inanimate lot once amidst the racks. Of clothes.

And now, the catalog, entitled "What is Sexy," confirms my fears. If you have to tell us you're sexy, dear VS, well, then maybe you're just not sexy enough.

The Slow Chair. Go to "Projects" and pan down.

The history of black as the outfit color of choice, from Suzy Menkes' Cross Currents (NY Times): Japanese designers rebelling against floral formality. Coco Chanel and the little black dress. Black surfaces as a color of choice as the rituals of mourning-wear wans. I can't get my eldest, who works in Midtown Manhattan during her studies, out of black. Black is sexy, black is strong, black allows the head and arms to take command - all good things. But it also suggests a hide-away comfort zone and conformist mentality which I never want to see, although I certainly can empathize. I came back from a brief work time in So. Cal., wearing tangerine sweaters and off-white pants, or yellow shifts with grass green belts, or baby-blue jeans with dark pink blouses. And darn if those shades didn't disappear from my wear list as quickly as a governor can butcher the name of his adopted state. I felt like an idiot in Upstate New York, where the color of choice is neither black nor bright, but beige and denim and none of those other who-do-you-think-you-are-missy hues. I long for my time of color, and so applaud the neon pink Raf Simons (for Jil Sander), YSL (burned orange), Gaultier (vintage red/maroon), Prada (bile green, a favorite on the name alone), Valentino (red carpet red), and all shades by Marc Jacobs - a true color hero.

Urban Outfitters beget Free People, Anthropologie, Leifsdottir, and Terrain. My spellchecker (already always screaming at me in red, and ignored) is going to go nuts if UO keeps reproducing.