Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Practical Decisions

Garance Dore

Practical is a word you will see me use quite a bit, I think. Especially when talking about clothing. I hate impractical clothing. And by impractical, I mean, uncomfortable, always-has-to-be-adjusted, does-not-flatter clothing. And I see a lot of that in high fashion.

There is a quote from my favorite childhood movie "Tuck Everlasting" that says "You must suffer to be beautiful, so say the French." Well, this season, one of the premiere French fashion houses, Chanel, has come out with a collection that I believe is anything but insufferable.

Look at the picture above. In my opinion, that is a practical dress. While I am unaware of it's fabric, the fine lines of it's design appear truely flattering to me. Notice the modest neckline (no worry of exposed cleavage), the moderate hemline (not too short, but just enough to show usually the best looking part of a woman's leg, the calf), and above, the fitted bodice and flared skirt, perfect for accenting and bringing out the natural hourglass curves of a woman's torso. The cut is also a timeless one, meaning it can be worn year to year with ease, and can also function within the spring and summer months quite perfectly. Wear it to work, or out on a date. It's the perfect Little Pastel Dress.

Now notice the shoes in the picture below:

Garance Dore
While they are a bit heavy looking for my taste, I can imagine that they would be very comfortable. A nice thick sole, perfect for walking. No heel. There is even a sturdy strap closure, which means no skinny straps biting into your feet at the end of the day. What this shoe lacks in delicacy, it makes up for in wearability.

And while I know that most women do not have the money to spend a few thousand dollars on a pair of shoes or a dress, the very fact that these practical design elements are in a high fashion collection now, means that eventually they will turn into the trends your average woman will see at her local Macy's or JCPenney. It is important that major fashion brands make decisions such as this, gearing their collections towards timeless wearability and comfort, because these decisions have the power to liberate women from the thought that we "must suffer to be beautiful" by making practical clothing cool again. So bravo, Chanel. Yet again, you make me smile.


  1. I wish I could say something smart now...but I really don't know much about fashion. ^ ^' From someone who knows NOTHING about fashion but DOES love drawing, I do like the first dress. Of the pictures, I'd be most tempted to copy the first picture. The way the dress fits and the shapes it makes where it hangs around the woman would be fun to draw. And because of the cut, it gives it very bold and determined shadows with that sort of lighting.

    The shoes in the second picture do look pretty comfy...I like the upper half of her outfit, but I'm not really sure what's going on from the waist to her ankles.

    I think practical clothing should be the way of the future. If clothing isn't comfortable and practical for me, I won't buy it. Cute AND practical is just that much better.

  2. Also...There should be no reason people should have to "suffer" to be beautiful. Beauty exists within people naturally; fashion and makeup and anything else should only function to enhance and play up that natural beauty. How I view fashion is that it's an expression of oneself- and as an expression of an individual, it should exist to best serve the person wearing it...which means fashion AND practicality.