Joseph Ungoco for Second City Style Magazine
As the July couture shows wound down, I felt nostalgic for the days
when watching fashion stalk down the runways thrilled me. Sadly, I have
succumbed to the general malaise of American fashion editors over the
past several seasons of being herded like cattle into overcrowded tents
to watch commercially viable if uninspiring clothes clomp down American
catwalks. The loss of Yves St Laurent earlier this year had me
wondering if we would ever again see a designer who could change the
course of fashion.
Longing to recover my former enthusiasm for the latest looks, I
poured over old coffee table books on the big names in women’s fashion
from my formative years: Chanel, Valentino, and Yves St Laurent. I even watched documentaries on YSL, the label and the man. In watching 5 Avenue Marceau 75116 Paris,
the documentary on YSL’s masterful creation of his finale couture show
for Spring 2001, I found my lost passion for fashion. There was
Catherine Deneuve at her couture fittings. There was the master himself
sketching at his desk in his atelier, an impossible long ash
dangerously teetering on the end of the very French cigarette dangling
from his lips. Here was magic in the making: a mad scramble of
sketching, cutting and draping muslin on live fit models, and tailoring
garments to within 1/16 of an inch of actually allowing the wearer to
breathe. Afterward, I would find myself fixated on one line from the film: “a very pretty skirt.”
For days afterward, like Linus from the Peanuts cartoons becoming
suddenly aware of his nose, I saw “very pretty skirts” everywhere.
Recently, I started seeing spots everywhere – and not from staring at the sun too long.
I kept thinking that I had suddenly become aware of polka dots and
couldn’t figure out why. As I passed a woman in a black-on-white polka
dot Valentino coat on Madison Avenue, I couldn’t recall: had I seen it in the window of the boutique, in a magazine, or on the runway?
Read more "Seeing Spots" here.See the Top Ten Summer 2016 Trends for Women Over 40