Because you can't have depths without surfaces.
Linda Grant, thinking about clothes, books and other matters.

Wednesday, 28 May 2008

Into the dark


This rather muddled piece on credit-crunch chic takes its cue from the M&S A/W08 range which was had its press show last week. It seems to think that we'll all be buying colour and pattern because black is too depressing and we'll need to cheer ourselves up.

It's talking about style-conscious women who have been buying a mix of Primark, Zara and some designer labels. Will they now cut the designers? I'm not a trend-spotter and I can't speak of what others might do, but the credit crunch (and it has had knock-on effects on me) means that I can no longer afford to buy disposable clothing. Stopping and thinking, asking if this will last more than a season, has now become instinctive.

On the other hand, do I want to be wearing the same black jacket for the next seven years at every party? I don't go to huge numbers of parties, but I do go to several, and wearing the same thing every time makes me feel like when I come in people think, 'There she is, in her jacket.'

Smile corner

'There is a real vulgarity in the way women dress at the moment," purrs Roberto Cavalli, stubbing out his cigarette in a turtle-shaped gold ashtray and reaching into his green, lizard-skin manbag for a cigar. "They show off too much and try too hard. They don't understand where the line is between sexy and vulgar. I know where that line is."

Roberto Cavalli with Celia Walden
King of the world: Roberto Cavalli with Celia Walden

I expected many things from the 64-year-old Italian designer - lover of leopard-print and creator of red-carpet dresses that stay up against all the laws of physics - but not this. Remember the slashed, lime chiffon number worn by Victoria Beckham to her own Full Length and Fabulous ball?

There are many words to describe it: understated is not one of them. But then we are in Cavalli world - a floating parallel universe where the senses are assaulted by a frenzy of satiny animal prints, gilt, mahogany and orchids.



and on and on, a pleasure to read