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

Thursday, 15 January 2009

Before size 0


The V&A is just about to republish a delightful little book called How To Dress For Success by the Hollywood costume designer Edith Head. First published in 1967, Head meant it to be a manual for ordinary American women, both housewives and 'career girls'. It is a riveting period piece but what I noticed was the chapter in which she adviseds women on how to dress according to their size. The smallest sizes she cites are US 6, 8 and 10. There is no 4, 2 or 0. This tallies with my recollection of Britain in the 60s when only teeny, birdlike girls could fit into an 8 and most of were 12 or 14, or 10 if you were small. No-one I knew had an eating disorder (lack of central heating in most homes made eating salad in winter inadvisable). No-one was on a diet. . No-one ate fast food or ready meals. No-one was overweight. We now seem to be striving for mythical sizes. It's all in our heads.

Groomed within an inch of his life

Mickey Rourke shows the girls how to do it*

*For further explication, see here

and by special request (see comments)