Today in my inbox, from ASOS community was, among other things, an Ashish-inspired 'sequin sunset vest dress', below. (The above shot is one of mine, btw: A/W 2010).
I got so inspired that I pulled out some photos from our sailing trip to the Virgin Islands last February (when I missed what would have been my first London Fashion Week, incidentally), and, having some Fun with Photoshop, I produced this:
Then I realised that net a porter is currently selling the real deal.
So, okay, I've done the math. I could buy the Ashish dress today (below), from net-a-porter, for £1,070. Or, I could buy the ASOS Ashish-inspired dress, sans sleeves, for £85. Another way to look at it is, for £1070 I could buy 12.68 ASOS dresses.
That's a lot more sequins.
I wonder at what point technology made it possible to mass produce sequins. I mean, even for the Ashish dresses, they can't possibly be hand sewn, can they? The dresses are quite different, apart from the sequins and the sunset motif. I used to wear the style of the ASOS dress: fitted, same neck, but.. maybe it's back to the 'act your age' debate, but I find I'm not in a stage of my life right now where I'd be wearing that kind of 'pulling' dress. I prefer the loose feel of Ashish's original design, the sleeves, and the colours feel more sophisticated. I'm not normally a red person but I love it next to hot pink and orange. Everything, with colour, is relative.
Don't get me wrong: I adore Ashish, and I love ASOS: two opposite ends of the same spectrum. And ASOS aren't saying that Ashish designed that line, only inspired it. And I feel ASOS is a brilliant, absolutely brilliant brand, and I like how they think. It's like the print vs. online debate: I believe there is not just room, but a need, for both. And at the moment, I'm not buying either dress.
What I'd love (Ashish, are you reading this?) is a large turquoise Hawaiian shirt, like what he's shown on the S/S 2010 catwalk, but bigger: as a mini dress. In sequins. Failing that, I am looking for a vintage one. I just think it would be a gorgeous look, with black tights and heels for night, or leggings, or bare legged with brogues. I haven't seen anyone wear it yet but I am starting that trend. Right here, right now. I'm throwing down the gauntlet.
Your thoughts on the subject, as always, are most welcome. Thank you to net a porter, ASOS, me, Photoshop, the British Virgin Islands, and the British Fashion Council, for unwittingly giving me permission to make this post possible. But especially, thank you to Ashish. Your vision and your talent is so joyous, far reaching, and above all, inspiring.