31.8.10

boats against the current: my fashion forward crystal ball



'So much for your global warming', says my husband, Mr. Dot.

He was a good sport about driving to Surrey to swim at the outdoor heated pool, but when we got there, at 11:00 (having had a lovely chat with one of my closest friends, Natayla, editor of 'it's fashion week'), it was really cold. I mean, I could have done it like on Saturday, but then I paid the price on Sunday. We just turned around, went for a drive, found a BRILLIANT pub for lunch (The Old Bear, in Cobham), as good or better than the one on Saturday (called, coincidentally, The Bear - more like the New Bear, in Oxshott).




Then we drove home, sleepy as Dorothy in the Poppy Fields. We are determined, in principle, not to turn the heat on in August, so stayed alive instead via hot cups of P.G. Tips. And as I almost dozed in front of the TV, shivering under my first birthday present from the future Mr. Dot (a thick white terry robe from Abercrombie & Fitch), I stumbled on a fabulously naff British film from 1960, The Time Machine, based on an H.G. Wells story. When it got to the part where they were in the 'future' - 1966 - what got me, besides the hilarious 'special effects' as the world ended with a lot of paint and model cars and screaming, was how they envisioned the future, style wise.




I mean, it hit me: they had no concept, in 1960, of the Beatles with their little suits and ties. No Twiggy, or Courreges, or Mary Quant, no mini skirts, or Biba.. NOTHING. The people were dressed just like they were in 1960, men in suits and hats and women in shirtwaist dresses to their knees, running and screaming. Oh and of course, the obligatory man in a tin foil jumpsuit.

So I pose to you: how do you see the future, fashion wise, in 2020? Or for that matter, simply this fall?



I've been trying to console myself this week, letting go of summer and trying to look forward to fall. Pulling from my past, from the clothes I've already got, honing my style, composing combinations in my head in the same way I like to play around with foods I love. The magazines are no help: the Sunday Times Style section tell us it's Fifties - or is Eighties? And we've got the Boho (Seventies) to look forward to - which is actually backwards. Other experts tell us it's Sixties again! (Hooray. I've always loved the Sixties). I'm sure we'd be channeling the Nineties, if anyone could figure out what people actually wore that decade.

It almost makes me wonder if The Industry, this season, hasn't a clue, and is looking to us to tell us what the trends will be.



I mean, let's see, we've got lace, especially in unexpected combination with more masculine materials. And boots, we've got boots. We've got black: how new! And aviator leather jackets lined with shearling, as every designer AND high street have their version. Chris Bailey @ Burberry has already moved on to pea jackets (which I love, too) and of course, everything will be in camel, the Colour Formerly Known as Tan. (I must say, I love the 'rebranding' of a colour: when beige became nude, we somehow saw it in a new light. I've always worn tan, so calling it camel works for me! And while some insiders swear camel will feel 'new' with red, I keep remembering Natalie in camel and hot pink last fashion week, a combo I've always worn anyway, and will, in the future. Apart from shoes, I'm just wondering: is anything in the fashion world new these days?

Self portraits shot in Joshua Tree, California, before many of you were born. Rust suede jacket, my father's, which I still have, and love, and will continue to wear, shot on David, my ex's, ranch in New Mexico (he's still a friend to both of us). That black fine ribbed knit mini dress, I have no idea who made it, but I still have it.

So, how do you see the future? I keep thinking of that magnificent last paragraph in The Great Gatsby: about being ceaselessly borne back into the past. Or something like that. Ah! Here it is, in my dusty old vintage copy, with the rose pink cover:

'Gatsby believed in the green light, the orgiastic future that year by year recedes before us. It eluded us then, but that's no matter- tomorrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms farther... And one fine morning ---

So we beat on, boats against the current, born back ceaselessly into the past.'

See you at fashion week. What are you wearing?

13 comments:

Monika said...

nice photos...

I wish I was at fashion week, I mean the real one(!), but I'm from Prague... anyway, looks like we gonna have fashion weekend at least:) And what am I wearing? Dunno so far, I'll see in the morning before the shows;)

Pearl Westwood said...

Did you ever seen an old UK show called the Prisoner? When ever he tried to escape a huge bubble like that would chase him!!

I will still be wearing my summer wardrobe because I still havent gotten chance to pull out all my A/W stuff, must get that done this week!! xx

notjustmedical said...

Great post.

I love those naff films "predicting" the future, they always make me laugh.

And as for future fashion, I'm not sure what will happen. I'm sure fashion trends will cycle. I hope to God that it won't be shiny sci fi wear (yuck!).

S
http://notjustmedical.wordpress.com

Anonymous said...

"It almost makes me wonder if The Industry, this season, hasn't a clue, and is looking to us to tell us what the trends will be."

I was just thinking about this the other day, while reading the september issue of Vogue. I'm very new to fashion so i think i might have a more fresh (sober?) look on things. So what i discovered, was that after having red countless fashion/streetstyle blogs and the bloggers' interpretations of collections, a flagship like vogue had nothing new to offer... So in a way it seems, the industry is looking at YOU to tell them what people want to wear... Or i might have it all wrong... :D

Lena S Young said...

your photos are always so beautiful! I've been reading your blog for a year now, and I just love it!!!!!

if it makes you feel any better i'm in miami and the weather has been horrible as well.

SabinePsynopsis said...

There is so much to say that I don't know where to start... First of all - we also ended up in front of the 'Time Machine' which got us philosophising about the early 60s and perception of life in general and how it changes. what a weird film! 2nd - I loooove your floaty - beautiful summer - dot pictures. I've put lots of summer photos 'in store' to get out in the cold winter days. 3rd - Fashion predictions for the future??? It's an endless circle, no?
Tomorrow is the 1st of September. Heating will be allowed (and probably quite necessary). An aviator jacket will certainly come in handy.
xoxo

Ellie Jane said...

It's kind of weird, I mean, I'm only 14 but all I ever want to wear is dresses from the 50s or 60s. My friends and family think I was born into the wrong decade. Fashion is to me, just a circle of the old being reincarnated to become new, we take things from the past and make them our own. Sometimes I wonder if people will look back at us and people like me and wonder if there really was anything truly unique about us fashion wise that will make us stand out and define us. I hope my point made sense!

Heidi said...

Amaaahzing post. Your such an inspiration!

Tabitha Bluebell said...

I love the photos you take. I've been obsessed with your blog since Christmas but for some reason have only just gotten around to following?! You're one of the inspirations behind creating my blog, now to find a decent camera and start taking arty shots for it!

Have a look? http://make-me--beautiful.blogspot.com

T x

polka dot said...

Aw, thank you, each of you! ; )

Tabitha: will take a look soon, just trying to get a post up and go out into this beautiful day. My advice? Don't worry about the quality of the camera. Use a PHONE camera if that's all you've got. It's like the Nike ad: just do it! It's about making your voice heard.

Thanks Heidi! Ellie Jane: that is fascinating and what I've been feeling, too. It seems the same with music in some ways. And come to think of it, food. My theory.. and I can feel a future post in this - is the idea that in any art form - and I do feel fashion is a legit art form - references the past, and somehow, each time someone does a 'cover' of a song, or puts together an ensemble comprised of vintage elements... somewhere along the way, something new is born. I mean, look at architecture!

Sabine: that is wild! Just left you a long comment on your post.

Lena, in a strange way, that DOES give me some comfort ; )

Anonymous: who are you? You maybe be 'new to fashion' but you write so well. Come out of the shadows! Tell us your name! ; )

Saskia: I'm still waiting for silver mylar jumpsuits to hit the high street. Can you imagine? I DARE them!!

Pearl: I LOVED that series! I used to watch it with my dad - just us two. We loved it. It was the only thing I ever saw that my father didn't understand. We'd both say 'what just happened?' Maybe subconsciously that's what inspired these bubbles.

Monika: does Prague have a fashion week? You know if you did happen to be in London from the 17th - the actual courtyard of Somerset House is open to the public. And that's the best part; seeing the models and the fashionistas and everything. You just couldn't see the shows but it's still a great experience, it's free, and that part is open to everyone.

I'll be posting about it - I didn't realise til last September that anyone really can take part. Kicking myself.

EIGHT by JAZZY said...

Gatsby on the mind too! I re-read it for the 12th time on the train from London to Edinburgh last week; 5 hours, the perfect reading time.

As for your thoughts on the offerings of 'the season', I've really stopped caring about what we call 'fashion trends'. Now I care only about what I like, what is well-made and beautiful, what fits my figure, and what is just the right amount of 'crazy' to turn people's heads. Style over fashion, isn't that what everyone's always chanting? Anonymous, I agree entirely with what you say about the industry 'looking to us' ( a recreational online fashion presence, I suppose) because a lot of us have nothing to do with sales. Vogue may be a 'style bible', but at the end of the day, they have to promote another product; the aviator jackets.


Jill:

Thank you so much for your epic and lovely comment on my Long Island pictures, it really made my day. It's definitely the most constructive comment I think I've ever had in my year's history; and it's made me reconsider my comments on other blogs. Sometimes I find myself commenting without really saying anything at all.

You always say something, Jill, you're a wordsmith, someone who can cause maximum effect with the minimum amount of well-chosen words.

Thank you for your generous offer regarding Long Island. I promise, if I'm ever back there in Gatsbyland, I'l let you know!

PS. These Joshua Tree pictures are possibly my most favourite thing you've ever posted on here


PPS. I am raring to go for LFW. Must get your number closer to the time!

Imogen

IMOGEN said...

This great comment came in from Imogen but didn't appear here - I wonder how many others aren't working? Apologies to anyone whose comments don't appear - please try again!


EIGHT by JAZZY has left a new comment on your post "boats against the current: my fashion forward crys...":

Gatsby on the mind too! I re-read it for the 12th time on the train from London to Edinburgh last week; 5 hours, the perfect reading time.

As for your thoughts on the offerings of 'the season', I've really stopped caring about what we call 'fashion trends'. Now I care only about what I like, what is well-made and beautiful, what fits my figure, and what is just the right amount of 'crazy' to turn people's heads. Style over fashion, isn't that what everyone's always chanting? Anonymous, I agree entirely with what you say about the industry 'looking to us' ( a recreational online fashion presence, I suppose) because a lot of us have nothing to do with sales. Vogue may be a 'style bible', but at the end of the day, they have to promote another product; the aviator jackets.


Jill:

Thank you so much for your epic and lovely comment on my Long Island pictures, it really made my day. It's definitely the most constructive comment I think I've ever had in my year's history; and it's made me reconsider my comments on other blogs. Sometimes I find myself commenting without really saying anything at all.

You always say something, Jill, you're a wordsmith, someone who can cause maximum effect with the minimum amount of well-chosen words.

Thank you for your generous offer regarding Long Island. I promise, if I'm ever back there in Gatsbyland, I'l let you know!

PS. These Joshua Tree pictures are possibly my most favourite thing you've ever posted on here


PPS. I am raring to go for LFW. Must get your number closer to the time!

Imogen

Prêt à Porter P said...

I like the picture of you in the racerback dress on the rocks. There is nothing "new" in fashion anymore, it's all been there and done. It's only what's "fresh" at the time. I'm only buy into trends if they suit me, so no Vuitton "lady like" 50s stuff for me.