Tuesday, March 13, 2007

the new yorker does it up in style


I always await The New Yorker's Style Issue with bated breath. It offers a refreshing perspective on some of what's going on in fashion. The tone of the articles is quite different than what you find in fashion magazines; there are limited pictures and it is designed for an older and less connected audience . I have not finished the whole issue yet, but three wonderful articles that I got through on my commute today were:

"Dressin' Texan"--A story about what oil money can get you in Neiman Marcus, and the women who have closets ten times bigger than my apartment. A snippet of a conversation between a stylish woman and her personal shopper goes a little like this: "'Can you send it to me? Because I have to keep moving.' The 'it' was a delicate pale-pink linen Andrew Gn A-line coat with silver leather paillettes ($2,700), which would join other 'it's' being speedily dispatched to the woman's house: a Roberto Cavalli top made of paper-thin leather so distressed that is looks like crumpled paper ('Fabulous for the South of France at night, right?'; $3,460), a black Dolce & Gabbana duchess satin coat with a ruffled leopard lining ('How cute for the boat!'; $3,010), and a white Armani shirt with vertical seaming in front and back, because you can never have enough white shirts ('They go to the dry cleaner's three times and it's goodbye'; $450)."

"This Old Thing?"--A retrospect on how Cameron Silver started the vintage craze in Hollywood with his boutique called "Decades" and "Decadestwo." Right now, he senses a big Lacroix moment.

"In The Now"--By far, my favorite...a profile of Kaiser Karl. I still remember the wonderful article that The New Yorker did on Hedi Slimane. Karl Lagerfeld is described a crazed workaholic with little understanding of the outside world except for his forays into Colette's record, book and magazine collection. He goes through assistants like I go through packs of gum, he calls models fat ("I eat next to nothing," he says in his best-seller, "The Karl Lagerfeld Diet"), and he owns mansions that he never visits and suits he never wears. At the same time, he is a prolific designer with his own label, Chanel and Fendi.


"Lagerfeld's devotion to fashion also has an intellectual dimension. He is fascinated by the manner in which clothes reflect the times and attitudes of their wearers. He mentions a project conceived by Albert Kahn, an eccentric banker who lived in Paris at the turn of the twentieth century. Kahn hoped to construct 'Archives of the Planet,' and to that end dispatched photographers and filmmakers around the world to document, essentially, everything. At one point, according to Lagerfeld, Kahn set up a movie camera on a Paris street corner, and every day for ten years filmed people walking by. 'You see the houses, you see the cars--and there were few changes in tens yeras,' says Lagerfeld, who has viewed the footage. 'The cars changed not that much. The architecture changed not at all. But the attitude of the people changed much more, in the way they walked, in the way they dressed. So don't tell me fashion is not important."

2 Comments:

Blogger Jennine said...

i loved this issue of the new yorker, particularly cameron silver's quote about vintage being the 'democratization of couture'

2:56 PM  
Blogger Raji said...

Excellent post!

8:50 PM  

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