I enjoy playing with choices, so that would feel like a slight exaggeration of something I remember, but not like a massive exaggeration. The flower brooch is part of my signature distinctive style and is being integrated into most of my outfits. What inspired me to choose such a piece is Georgia O’Keeffe’s artwork. She found something in flowers that is beyond human comprehension.
As more and more women began to enter the conference rooms, discreet clothing from the previous decade, from the 70s, such as a cardigan and a flowing maxi skirt, was replaced by items with a stiff cut at the shoulders.
Although John Molly in “The Women’s Dress for Success Book” from 1977 advised these bright amazons to opt for modest dark-coloured clothing, they ignored the recommendations of this business wear guru, preferring to wear brightly coloured suits.
The square, cushioned line of the jacket was balanced at the hips with a flared peplum, which had the effect of thinning the waist, often tightened with a wide belt. The jacket was worn with a matching mini skirt, unlike the previous version from the 1960s, which relied on a naive vibe. The micro skirt of the 1980s was exclusively an expression of power and freedom, worn with heels that symbolised domination.
The wide-shouldered blouses featured graphic prints with Trompe l’oeil effects made up of chains, garlands, bows, and ribbons as well as animal motifs. The accessories were capable of arousing aspirations. These included the Hermes scarf, the “braided and gilded” shoulder bag reinvented by Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel, the opaque black tights and the spectacular heeled shoes by Manolo Blahnik.
Founded in 1923 by Hugo Boss (1885–1948), the company produced workwear and uniforms before expanding and including men’s clothing in 1953. But it was only with the explosion of popularity that the suits had in the 1980s that this brand also gained an international reputation.
At that time, in 1979 to be precise, Margaret Thatcher, known as the Iron Lady and an expert in empowering outfits, became Britain’s first female Prime Minister.
Then, in 1981, the American series Dynasty started running. It promotes the fashion of wide shoulders, and thanks to this series, the shoulder pads become so popular that they start to be sold en masse.
Tom Wolfe’s novel “The Bonfire of Vanities” was released in 1987. It satirizes the ambitions of young men from the urban environment with great professional aspirations.
Because every count has a reversal, around the same time, in 1988, the Hollywood film “A Woman Makes a Career,” starring Melanie Griffith and Sigourney Weaver, illustrates a woman’s career aspirations.
Fast forward to today’s life: here I’m wearing this double-breasted, black shimmery tweed suit jacket from BonPrix, although all black, in an eclectic approach. I enjoy playing with choices, so that would feel like a slight exaggeration of something I remember, but not like a massive exaggeration.
What did I remember about it? The exuberance and drama of the roaring twenties vibe with its less inhibited lifestyle. Decadent and provocative, with glamour and an abundance of details. A time when gender roles were redefined.
Fingerless lace gloves, pearl string, and leopard veil all express sensuality. They are carried on with the platforms, cross strap sandals, the beehive hair, and the black lace body, making the viewer travel into the intimacy of the boudoir.
The flower brooch is part of my signature distinctive style and is being integrated into most of my outfits. What inspired me to choose such a piece is Georgia O’Keeffe’s artwork. She found something in flowers that is beyond human comprehension. The word “vagina” is often used to describe her art, but it might just as well be “cash.” In some industries, these two terms are synonyms, but I’m not going there. “Jimson Weed/White Flower No. 1” set the record for the highest price ever paid for a painting by a woman when it was sold for $44.4 million in 2014. O’Keeffe was adamant throughout her career that her paintings had nothing to do with female genital organs.
Women and flowers have always served as untiring hosts to idealization. The lotus represents creation and rebirth in Egypt and India; Mary was “the violet of humility, the lily of virginity, and the rose of charity” to Saint Bernard; white blossoms represent sex, while red blooms represent menstruation in “The Lady of the Camellias”.
For me, flowers reflect my feminine side, the fragility I’m often trying to hide. Narcissus is used as a metaphor: flowers are a reflection of what you can’t comprehend and shouldn’t try to. And so is fashion, I believe. It shouldn’t be understood that it should reflect yourself. As an extension, you shouldn’t crave to be understood by others; just be you and don’t explain yourself.
Fashion has a theatricality. I think of fashion as a form of entertainment. I think getting dressed is a form of entertainment, and again, it’s something we want, not something we need. So it has to inspire you, it has to delight you, it has to surprise you.
Assessing fashion and iconic characters through the lens of cultural theory, with a focus on symbolism, art, and anthropological references. Making connections between diverse things and thinking extensively about a particular topic is what my reflections entail.