Thursday, 15 May 2008

The eye of the beholder

Is the fact that something's new, quirky and individual enough to make it desirable? I think not. Ultimately, it's all a matter of taste.

Putting together a load of innovative and unusual pieces of clothing or furniture isn't necessarily going to make for a stylish or harmonious look. Creating something that's unique and beautiful has much more to do with having a flair for fashion, an eye for aesthetics and to being able to mix and match chain store pieces with designer, vintage and antique one-offs in a very clever way. It's about looking much more carefully at the way we buy, collect, wear or display things for our wardrobe, home and lifestyle. It's not about buying what's new and different, but about a new and different approach to buying.

Sarah Mower writing for the Sunday Telegraph (fashion supplement, March 2008) says, “This emerging pattern is more akin to the way wine connoisseurs operate: the idea of ‘laying down’ a smart buy to wear later – at the exact moment when its attractiveness is at its optimum… What this kind of purchasing entails is regarding your clothes as a personal collection, an in-depth, stylistic work-in-progress rather than a quick in-and-out medium slavishly reflecting every passing trend.” She adds, “Having looked at all of the shows, the one thing that struck me as transformative was the creativity that has suddenly broken out in jewellery: necklaces, pendants, brooches, bangles and hair ornaments

An extraordinary, well-chosen chunk of jewellery can stretch a wardrobe, change the sense of clothes you already own, go back into its box, hibernate and then come out to perform again years later. In other words, it meets all the criteria for fashion that is special, surprising, long-lasting and personal – an ideal addition to a lifetime’s collection.”

As Vivienne Westwood says in her World's End Manifesto :"We have a choice to become more cultivated and therefore more human...In pursuit of culture you will start to think. If you change your life, you change the world.”

Will you?

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