I had a pretty kick ass day! It started with an early morning private view of Shakespeare: staging the world at the British Museum. It was then interrupted by work and it finished at the V&A for their latest Fashion in Motion event.
Shakespeare was a wonderful exhibition and quite different than I’d been expecting. Rather than focusing on the playwright himself, they focused on what the world was like at that time. And being a total Londonophile I loved the first sections where it gave you unique insights into life in London during that time, including the race riots, the influence of the theatre, a little on the fashion and bearbaiting (a horribly violent form of Elizabethan entertainment). It seemed that somethings never change, while thankfully our taste for entertainment does. If you like London, Venice, Shakespeare or Tudor England this is a must see!!!
Fashion in Motion was, as always, a wonderful way to end a week. This time Craig Lawrence, an English designer, was showing his collection. It started was some odd designs where the models looked more like bonbons than women. It wasn’t my style at all. But the show swiftly switched gears and some elegant dresses were followed by knits. The knits were in no way ready to wear but in many of the designs I could see the retail potential.
But it’s a good thing fashion shows are so short because after the week I’ve had I need an early night. Tonight I hope my dreams will be inspired by all the lovely finery from both the British Museum and the V&A! This is what happiness is…
I admit it, I am a reluctant lover of food. It makes me nervous that my love of food may someday make me fat, so I approach it with caution. But I’ve had an eye-opening experience, and at a fashion show of all places!
The V&A hosted another of its Fashion in Motion events, ‘Models at Work’ by Olivier Saillard. This wasn’t your typical fashion show though. In fact, there were no clothes. Rather the models used poses and gestures to demonstrate how the presentation of fashion has changed over time.
The models, all famous french models from the 80s and 90s, wore black tights and black body suits. They used white tunics to turn a plain item into high fashion, they used pieces of fabric to create new looks as they strutted up and down the catwalk, they mimicked what I would call a “typical” fashion show and then they donned tulle that had been shaped into different styles; all whilst showing how these items change the wearers behaviours and movements. The fact that there was no finished piece of clothing in the show was really powerful.
Throughout the entire 30 minutes I was mesmerized by two things. The first was that these women were dead sexy. They owned their bodies and although they weren’t necessarily the traditional image of beautiful, they were enchanting. Secondly, it doesn’t matter what you wear, it’s how you wear it. These women were sent out with bed sheets or a white tunic that they used to create some really good looks. Realistically they would never wear those looks anywhere other than the catwalk, but the learning stands.
I’ve always been in search of the perfect body; no matter how thin I am, I always want to be smaller. I danced for many years, so perhaps it stems from there, but realistically I think I’d have struggled with this whether I danced or not. It’s just one of my neurosis. After this show I am going to try to own my body the way the models owned theirs, and maybe that’ll even help me to overcome my food fright. Won’t My Chef be pleased!