Where do you look for fashion inspiration?
For me, it used to be fashion magazines. Albeit before—but even long after—the advent of the internet, Instagram, Pinterest and so on— I loved paging through the glossies. I never missed the massive Spring and Fall issues of Vogue.
But that was when the magazines were about clothes, and when the models were actual models, not celebrities.
Former supermodel, Paulina Porizkova, 54, mentioned this in a recent interview:
When I started in 1980, the photographers held the power and you had to be nice to the photographers. Then, the models took over. We became more powerful than the photographers, the editors and, sometimes, even more powerful than the magazine for which we posed.
It was the beginning of the model as a celebrity culture. We, through modelling, became the celebrities. Now it seems you have to be a celebrity before you become a model.
The fashion business no longer creates the idols. Now it just offers them a free ride.
~ Paulina Porizkova, The Daily Mail, May 14, 2019
I rarely buy a fashion magazine any more. Many would argue that digital media has made them obsolete. But it’s more than an electronic shift and the prevailing veneration of celebrity culture—it’s more fundamental: the editorial voices of these publications don’t represent me or speak to me. Age is one factor no doubt, but attitude is a bigger divergence. Along with trends, magazines have deemed it necessary to mix in social politics and fervent messages of empowerment to enlighten their readers. But I don’t feel unempowered—do you?
Does anyone remember Mirabella?
I wish there was a magazine devoted to women 50+. Perhaps all those models of yore can make a comeback and be super again. There are so many beautiful, interesting, and inspiring women-of-a-certain age.
So in lieu of the newsstand, these days I’ve been looking more and more to the past for inspiration. Vintage fashion inspires me with its beauty, elegance, femininity, and attention to detail.
Style isn’t a colour or a hemline.
It’s a spirit.
POST PHOTO: I framed a Louis Féraud advertisement I saved from Vogue 1992. It hangs in my sewing room for design inspiration.
Louis Féraud (1921 –1999) was a French fashion designer and artist. In 1950, Louis Féraud created his first “Maison de Couture” in Cannes and by 1955 had established a couture house in Paris on 88, Rue du Faubourg Saint Honoré and 57, rue Pierre-Charonne. From the mid-1950s he was dressing the Parisian elite and designed the wardrobe of Brigitte Bardot for many of her movies. It wasn’t however until 1958 that he presented his first haute couture collection in Paris.