Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Installment II: And now, the best fashion writing

Upon leaving the subway this morning, I nearly collided with yet another model, this time because I stubbornly refused to obey the unspoken law of Shorter Person Steps Aside for Taller Person, that is, until the last moment, when it became abundantly clear that if I didn't move, it would be yesterday all over again.

So it seems as good a time as any, now that I'm done with my cathartic anti-fashion posts, to offer up, as promised, some more positive examples of clothes-obsession. An incomplete list:

Mike Albo's Critical Shopper columns: Here he is on a dog-accessory boutique. And here, on some fancy British men's clothes. Sample passage:

The cardigan was worth more than my income for the month and, therefore, worth more than me, so I had to try it on. It felt nice, but it seemed two sizes too small, and the cuffs landed on my forearms. This made sense, though, because Thom Browne makes fastidiously tailored suits, coats, sweaters and shirts that are meant to be worn in a narrow Pee-wee Herman kind of way. At this point, you have probably seen his clothing — the high-seam floodwater pants, narrow lapels, snug jackets — in some worshipful style piece or magazine spread. You may have seen Mr. Browne himself wearing the distinctive clothes. He is a very handsome, symmetrical man, often photographed. He always looks dapper and cleanshaven, his ankles exposed, his jackets tight and sleeves receding above his wrists. There is no lint in this man’s life. In interviews, he seems like kind of person who keeps a neat desk, files his receipts months before tax time, eats three square meals, and has one simple cocktail after work. In other words: not me.

A little self-deprecation makes commentary on high fashion and even dog fashion palatable, and even entertaining. Not all fashion writing needs to be about well-arranged thrift-store purchases. Some acknowledgment that narrow-cut, thousand-dollar-range clothes are too damn small and pricey makes it possible to discuss which designer duds are covetable and which are not, all the while keeping the possibility of actually buying them off the table.

Kei: Not only a fabulous astrophysics lab partner, but one who finds fashion in all places.

Tavi, 12-year-old fashion prodigy, found via Kei: So there's a part of me that thinks, minus the I'm-not-12-anymore build, I too could look high-fashion in the clothes I wear every day. But then I realize this girl really does have talent. (Whereas, much as I adore this outfit and these boots, I can't include "Sea of Shoes", even though it counts as good fashion writing, because if you are not a beautiful blonde Texan with the funds for high fashion and the ability to walk in seven-inch heels, you will be preoccupied by jealousy - of the girl, her corgi-filled life, and of course her shoes, to the point where it becomes impossible to think of the clothes and shoes in isolation.)

Zana Bayne: Encouraging news for those of us who neither are nor look like blonde preadolescents that we, too, can look space-age and awesome.

The Streetswalker
: Here, my pro-Tel Aviv bias is showing. The blog's a whole lot like The Sartorialist, but Tel Aviv is the most wonderful place ever. The clothes come second, but the blog itself still, for my admittedly subjective reasons, made the cut.


kei said...

Ooh, thanks for the shoutout! Indeed, clothes/fashion are increasingly becoming post-topics for me these days, thanks to all those blogs that have basically taken over my life.

SeaOfShoes! I've even started following her mom's blog (http://atlantishome.typepad.com/), it's ridiculous--both the fact that I follow her mom's blog and the fact that her mom has a blog in which she displays pictures of _her_ outrageous closet and home. It's nonetheless addictive!

Phoebe said...

OK, both blogs are fascinating. And my corgi-envy is out of control!

mikhail quijano said...

Almost a year too late, but I stumbled on your blog after wandering around the internet for good fashion writing.

Nothing more I can say! I totally agree with both installments. Although I do visit the sartorialist, it's more to look at pretty pictures of pretty people.

Great blog!

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