The Daily

Posts Tagged ‘Fashion Week’

The Case of the Shrinking Mannequins, and Other News

September 13, 2016 | by

English mannequins ca. 1950.

  • If you’re in New York, you’ve surely noticed them, those well-heeled people bolting down the sidewalk looking pissed off and holding enormous cups of coffee. That frisson of exclusion … that perfume of condescension: it’s Fashion Week! And what better time to remind ourselves that the industry promulgates a whole range of body-image issues, not just in the models it chooses but right down to the mannequins? M. G. Zimeta, at a shop in London, tried to get some answers about those mannequins: “Nearly a year ago I complained about the mannequins at the entrance of the ladies’ department in John Lewis on Oxford Street … Months passed, and I received no response … The ‘Fashion Queen’ mannequin range I’d seen in John Lewis is produced by Bonami in Belgium and has the following dimensions: height 185 cm (6'07"), waist 59 cm (23"), hips 87 cm (34") and bust 87 cm (34"). A Fashion Queen mannequin is taller than the average British man, but with the waist of a ten-year-old girl in John Lewis sizes. Some of the clothes on the mannequins at John Lewis were discreetly pinned in place because the outfits would otherwise, even in the smallest sizes, be too loose for their frames.”

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Being Seymour Glass

August 17, 2016 | by

Why I borrowed a name from Salinger.

An illustration of Salinger’s “A Perfect Day for Bananafish” by Jonny Ruzzo, 2013.

Ask someone who Seymour Glass is and they’ll tell you he’s a Salinger character: the eldest of the precocious Glass family, a misanthrope who shoots himself on vacation in “A Perfect Day for Bananafish.” But if that someone works in the New York fashion industry—specifically, in the editorial departments of select glossies—their response might be, Didn’t he used to work here?

That’s me they’re thinking of. Read More »

En Vogue

February 12, 2015 | by


Photo: Vetatur Fumare, via Flickr

Late last night I posted a picture of myself to a social media account. Not the most flattering picture, and a particularly ridiculous one: I’m standing in front of my bathroom mirror, phone clearly visible in my hand, and staring off at—what? The shower curtain? The radiator?—with a deliberately distracted air and the Flemish-Madonna mirror-face that my family has always mocked. Why, I didn’t see you there with the camera in your own hand! it seems to say. 

I’d taken this photo because I wanted to send a friend a picture of my garment: a mod, nubbly green tweed coat—or maybe it’s a dress—from the early sixties, with a swing cut and two large pockets in the front. It zips up the back. The high neck chafes after a few minutes, and it takes all my flexibility to manage both the zipper and the buttoned half-belt (also in back). Ever since I bought the coat-dress in a California thrift shop, I’d been saving it for just such an occasion: a fashion event, where I needed something bizarre enough to make it look as though I know what I’m about. Read More »

Dead Authors at Fashion Week: Part 5

October 3, 2012 | by

Gertrude Stein takes notes from the front row at the Céline Spring 2013 collection.



Dead Authors at Fashion Week: Part 4

September 25, 2012 | by

Italo Calvino Attends the Prada Spring/Summer 2013 Show.

You are about to begin reading Italo Calvino’s review of Miuccia Prada’s new collection for Spring/Summer 2013. Relax. Concentrate. Close out all other Internet windows. Set your Gchat status to Busy. Tell your friends right away, “No I don’t want to chat with you about the UN General Assembly right now, I am reading about fashion!” Type it in all caps—they won’t know that you’re yelling otherwise—“I AM READING ABOUT PRADA’S SUBVERSIVE FLOWERS ON COATS!” Or if you prefer, send them a GIF; just be like: here.

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Dead Authors at Fashion Week: Part 3

September 20, 2012 | by

Virginia Woolf attends the Burberry Prorsum Spring 2013 show.

I dread not the PR girls at the door this morning at Burberry Prorsum, though the invitation I possess is not mine. Sneaking in? Dressed as a fashion dude? I hardly consider dressing as a man to gain entry immoral; unlike me, half the so-and-sos present don’t even know what Prorsum means; O! Prorsum; Opossum. Those people invited who are supposedly “forward” thinking; people who discuss fashion though they’ve never worn Burberry; never felt the blue-black silk lining of a trench-coat sleeve; the plunge of putting on a sturdy work of satin and cotton sateen. I wanted to come in holding something. Flowers? Yes, flowers, since I do not trust my taste in Filson bags.

I take my seat and then, parading in from backstage quite composedly, the models are copper-rose clones; carrying swollen candy satchels; attractive and shiny hosts in a grand entryway; it is all perfectly correct. Some designers are to be seen as poets. Christopher Bailey; coming and going with a pin in hand; a pin and a vision; no country but England could have produced him. Happiness is this, I think. The lights come on and the end suddenly comes in a rush; the luster has gone out of it; no showgoer looks photoworthy like before; glimpsing the future, that hot pants are still in for spring, ruins everything. We rise instantly.

Then: “Virginia! Your menswear look is Uh-mazing! Your oxfords are so cute!”

Somehow I am recognized, in people’s eyes, in the swing and shuffle as we depart, it’s become known who I am. “Comme des Garcons,” I hear a lady with silver hair ornaments say, and now I confess a bit of shock overtakes me. Suddenly everywhere in the crowd I see women in blazers and fine gray-white trousers; ladies wearing collared shirts like spruce old men. Is that a tie? Awesome prorsum.