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

Thursday, 17 July 2008

So here it is, Merry Xmas

Today I was invited to a couple of Christmas press show previews, at Jaeger and Selfridge's.

I did Jaeger first, picking up a coat-dress which has just come in, which I spotted at the AW08 press show a few months ago. For once, they actually have this on the site and that's it above. Very mid-Sixties. To wear with a ribbed sweater beneath and wide-legged trousers and very high heels.

I really like the cashmere travel sets they had, which include suede-bottomed slippers, socks, an eye mask, and a blanket. What they probably give you when you travel BA First Class, but of course I wouldn't know, would I? Still, the frequent traveller can heavily hint to their spouse. Even better it's only going to be available on line so they don't even have to go into a shop full of frightening female things to get it. It will cost £199, but who can put a price on love, as the Mastercard ads are always telling us? There were also lots of snakeprint silver things, Swarovski make-up mirrors. A shoplifter's paradise, in fact.

The Jaeger London collection was extraordinarily cohesive. You saw all the work paying off, and the creation of a collection out of the London Fashion Week show.
And this was the piece that the fashion press this afternoon was oohing and aahing about from the forthcoming collection. The top is cleverly cut to resemble the front of a tuxedo. Difficult to see from the pic but a very good dress.

After that I somehow managed not to make it up the other end of Oxford Street in the last week of the sales when it was raining, to Selfridge's press preview. And missed a £43,000 teddy bear with emerald eyes and a solid gold nose. Or so I read in the Evening Standard on the tube. And was quite glad I had. Because in another part of the paper was a piece about children in London who can't go to school because they have no shoes.

63-year-old woman in a bikini


Appeal to well-read readers . . .

Can anyone kindly identify which Edith Wharton novel this passage comes from? House of Mirth perhaps?

She had a few handsome dresses left- survivals of her last phase of splendour. . . as she spread them out on the bed, the scenes in which they had been worn rose vividly before her. An association lurked in every fold: each fall of lace and gleam of embroidery was like a letter in the record of her past. She was startled to find how the atmosphere of her old life enveloped her. . . She put back the dresses one by one, laying away with each some gleam of light, some note of laughter, some stray waft from the rose shores of pleasure.

Invisible man

Martin Margiela has never given an interview. He has never been photographed and almost no-one in the fashion industry knows what he looks like.

Since he started out, in 1988, the designer has never agreed to a single interview or been photographed for any magazine, however respected the title. Particularly in a climate where the superstar designer – from Jacobs to Prada, and from Tom Ford to Vivienne Westwood – might hardly be described as backwards in coming forward, one could be forgiven for thinking that Martin Margiela is a figment of the industry's imagination. And that's just fine by him. Suffice it to say that Martin Margiela makes Greta Garbo look like Victoria Beckham.