I want to speak to the great discussion of fashion that has emerged in blog-land this week but don't really know where to start. Laura Moriarty started it, Nada Gordon totally picked up the ball and rolled it like one half of a chinese medicine ball set and Brandon Brown grabbed that ball (the one he had in fact dropped originally) and punted it right into Barthes territory.
First off, I'm glad to see the pinball effect happening again in the blogs. That phenomenon always sets off a parallel of dings and thwacks in my head, which is usually a good thing.
Second, I love that the aforementioned all decided to articulate the compelling nature of the awry in fashion. There are so many corollations to draw: Brando's face before and after broken nose, uh, Adrian Brody's face with thrice broken nose, my love of men with fucked up teeth and color-blindness (pretty much any physical abnormality will do) to start. I was just rereading Dodie Bellamy's Barf Manifesto and she speaks to this very thing. I'll see if I can find the quote. Okay, so Dodie is speaking as Bridget Riley in one of Kevin Killian's plays in this quote,
"What we artists do [pause]-- what we great artists do is we work in mistakes to make a piece seem alive, to add energy. The tapestry makers of old Persia would put in a knot where it didn't belong, just to avoid competing with God. For only God is perfect. Except for myself naturally. I'm so glad you like my scarf, it was a present from [pause] Seurat. Love those dots."
Then Dodie goes on to describe her desire to encourage creative writing students to take risks in their writing compared with "Professor X". Dodie encouraged the "knots of mistake" while Professor X was full of "should nots". There are so many "should nots" in fashion that it can be difficult to distinguish them from the "knots" like Brandon's pearl necklace (still must see to believe), Laura's double scarf, my friend Persephone's dreaded (actually dread locked but also feared) Amy Whinehouse beehive, my hole-ridden everything, or Alli Warren's browns with blacks. Something goes awry and ushers the outfit into the sublime
[Also, I love the above quote because it reminds me of Laura Moriarty and her scarves. She really does wear two scarves sometimes and she totally rocks them both. I remember one day at SPD, Laura walked past me at my desk and stopped to show me how she had pegged her pants. I was sort of dumbstruck. Mostly I was just really impressed that she would take the time to do such a thing.]
But yeah, some times a thing is too pretty and you have to fuck it up or its too neat, or too composed. Maxwell Heller once said to me that I always include at least one thing (in my outfits) that will prevent me from being taken seriously. Substitute any aspect of my life into that parentheses and it works just as well.
Anyway, fashion. Let's hear about it. In the meantime, I have some recent ridiculous outfits to share. You're lucky I'm vain. Sorry no photo of yesterday's, Laura!
This was my birthday outfit this year. You can't tell in the photo but that tie is bright purple and it is a clip-on.
I don't know, this is just a good example of the ratty scarf and beenie phenomenon.
I call this look "The Mission Hipster" and no, I haven't worn those glasses out of the house and it is important to know that the sweater features goats with udders.