Tuesday, 13 July 2010

It should not be about age appropriate but size appropriate

This dress is EXACTLY what I would call The Perfect Dress, perfect for a night out, perfect for a day out, perfect for a wedding, it skims and has perfect sleeves. The photograph is from one of the weekend supplements it's of Julia Peyton-Jones the power behind the amazing Serpentine Gallery, if I had this dress in any colour, well OK maybe not orange or emerald green but you know what I mean, navy, deep red, black, camel, all would look perfect. The article references the dress as Hugo Boss, despite an all flashing website I have not been able to find out much about them, I know I could not ever afford it but why can the high street not at least try? So wedding No 4 (well No 2 for me) arrived, not as glam as the last one although we were now at table No 4 with many of the bridesmaids (I counted over 8!) fluttering in and out. We arrived early after Emin had collected his cousin from the airport, she had flown via somewhere from Tbilisi where she is the EU blah blah, so she was shattered but stoically got ready, we arrived early to allow Leyla time to practice with the band. The bride had asked her to play her in, the tune is VERY difficult and we have endured numerous tantrums to get there but she did it beautifully and even now a tear is in my eye when I think how well she did.
She too was a bridesmaid so finally got to wear a dreamy ivory satin and net puff, the food was great and Leyla was feted by all. Whilst not drunk I did drink and was v-e-r-y lethargic Sunday and achieved nothing. Daisy & Kitty dutifully visited Mother to celebrate her birthday and appear to have fleeced my sister.
I had not intended to buy a dress for the wedding, Leyla was however somewhat crestfallen when I failed to wear the dress Lucy had lent me so I had half heatedly attempted to have a look. We were in Blackheath a couple of weeks ago to buy her some sandals I dragged her into Phase Eight as they had a sale on and did in fact find a lovely dress for school. To avoid a tantrum I feigned looking for a dress for the wedding and would you believe I found this one.
Very plain and simple but it looks lovely on and feel amazingly glamorous too, really it needed some 'big' earrings but I wrapped lots of crystal round my neck instead. The other good thing is you can get away with flat shoes, I am tall enough not to need heels so the dress was perfect in every way and Leyla too was over the moon that I had not only bought a dress but I was finally glamorous enough to take out! What you may notice is however is the arms are out, truly does a dress with sleeves exist?
In fact yesterday Janet Street Porter berated designers for not creating size appropriate clothes and I must admit I am on her side, although she could have written with a touch more eloquence, I hate it when journalist talk in a faux pally style. That said at least she is trying to get a discussion going.
The Guardian each weekend has a feature in a colour supplement called .......All Ages, the point being to provide us with inspiration on how to rock the latest look despite our age. The problem is and many, many women have written to complain, they use very, very thin women. Well what is the point? We all know that clothes hang better when your thin, age is not the issue, SIZE is and this is where JSP has hit the nail on the head, I too am a size 16, I am not particularly overweight, I have waist definition (even at my tiniest I was a size 10/12) so now approaching 50 I am a relatively toned, fit 16 which it seems is pretty much where all us 60's baby boomers are if statistics are to be believed. I have no shortage of clothes because I enjoy the challenge and I don't tend to shop high end, even if I won the lottery I would change little about my spending habits because I know my size is shunned by most designers. Their loss, we are not the signifiers they want, but as time marches on there is going to be considerably more of us chunky-monkey's than skinny young girls hence their move to woo the the richer clients from the East. I don't think designers will ever change.

This piece is pretty good, but misses some obvious shops, especially as those outside of London must get sick of Londoner's waxing lyrical about COS when they don't have branches elsewhere. I would add House of Fraser, their own brand Linea is OK for basics but the the stores franchises do seem to stock larger sizes, including Fenn Wright Manson. I like Muji for basics too and asos is a firm favourite, their own brand clothes often go up to 18/20 and free p&p makes it a no brainier.
I do not agree with her dismissal of Zara, you can find XL which fits me if well cut and I have noticed some XXL's creeping in and their trousers go up to 44. I personally think both Hobbs and Whistles are overpriced, but at least they are cut well. My sister who is a size 20 and 6 ft tall is a fan of Monsoon and Coast, and don't knock it but Next is fine too, especially since they too go up to a 20.
To a designer size 16 equates with clinically obese in reality we are women with shape and a life.


La Belette Rouge said...

Isn't it lovely when you so easily find a dress? Dress shopping is hard! It looks great on you.

materfamilias said...

It was fun getting to see these various shops I've read about in your blog but which we don't have -- COS, Jigsaw, etc. I can see the appeal!
That dress looks fabulous on you! And your arms look great sleeveless in this photo.

auntiegwen said...

I love your dress