“My role is to seduce”, said Juan Carlos Antonio Galliano Guillen (John Galliano of Christian Dior)
His designs are a symbol of theatre, expression and femininity, representing the move away from the traditional forms of prêt-a-porter towards haute couture.
To begin the paragraph with his quote is a reminder of how fashion itself is a form of creativity, and daring to go into the realms of the unknown. Yet the public still find themselves looking into magazines for what is on trend for Spring/Summer 2011, or what not to wear. Trying to find the same exact dress Cheryl Cole was wearing on the final episode of X factor or looking for a similar skirt Blake Lively was seen in has become the mission for many women.
So where does individuality fall in?
Galliano wanted to seduce the audience with his designs, not for all to simply dress the same and look like chameleons, but for a sense of entertainment, for your imagination to run wild. Remember his love of the theatre inspired many of his designs, and he is trying to inspire others. There is nothing wrong in owning a military inspired coat, owning that on trend winter jumper or camel coloured dress, but before following that huge crowd, why don’t we take a step back?
Dita Von Teese expresses her passion for 1940s cinema and classic retro style. There is her trademark black hair and red lips against a pale complexion, and she herself has stated she never uses a stylist, “This one time I hired a stylist, they picked up a pair of my 1940s shoes and said, ‘These would look really cute with jeans’. I immediately said, ‘You’re out of here”.
She is a woman who does her own makeup and hair at home, and although you will find her front row at a Dior or Marc Jacobs show in Milan, she still holds her individuality and personal inspirations, those being the following women, Luisa Casati, Anna Piaggi and Isabella Blow.
Galliano did not get admitted to the French Legion of Honour with the rank of Chevalier because he blended in as a designer or copied the likes of Donatella or Lagerfeld. He received this rank because he dared to express himself, he did not see any boundaries or rules. That is what fashion should be about, not buying the latest coat from Topshop which another twenty people will have, but adding something that makes you stand out as an individual.
Whether it be dying your hair the shade that is not in, getting that old school sailor tattoo you have always wanted, or dressing in a style from a particular era that catapults your heart into sheer bliss. Your wardrobe should tell a thousand words, which differ to your friends, the clothes should speak a story about you and your life. You should not look in a wardrobe and see items like Cheryl Cole’s, Blake Lively’s or your work colleagues, it should scream your name, after all it is your wardrobe.
Be brave and express yourself, dare to dress up as Galliano would want you to, and don’t be a slave to fashion but rather its saviour. To conclude, in true words, again Galliano, “the joy of dressing is an art”.