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A little bit of history repeating: something old makes something new, at Raf Simons’ Dior and Karl Lagerfeld’s Chanel
The much-vaunted and oft-debated “point” of haute couture is tied up in history. Haute couture is living history, less a retrograde throwback and more a direct link to the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. The latter was when “haute couture” as a term was officially incorporated by Charles Frederick Worth, couturier to Empress Eugenie and most of her court; the former was when the idea of a fashion dictator was pioneered by the first celebrity dress designer, Marie Antoinette’s “Minister of Fashion” Rose Bertin. Those are some heavy antecedents, but they’re ones couturiers often bank on. Buying haute couture is a bit like buying a stake in a past you can never be part of.
Cross-post by Mugwump.
This 9,000-word article looks at why intelligence services around the world were so sure that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction in 2003. I re-post it here because it is an impressive piece of work, bringing together evidence from a wide range of sources.
Photo of soldiers from the 3rd Brigade, 1st Cavalry [...]
In a society ridden with crony capitalism and crony politics, businessmen and politicians inevitably try to stop people writing books that reveal their goings-on. But there is a limit to how much disruption they can achieve.
This has been shown by the recent publication of three books, one of which uncovers many of the secrets of [...]
The collective day-to-day spending of all those other departments – Business, Home Office, Justice, Environment, Culture etc – would fall from £94.6bn in 2011/12 to just £29.7bn in 2018/19. That’s a real terms cut of 70%.
Chinese Whispers at Versace, Frankenstein’s Monster at Schiaparelli. Haute couture autumn/winter 2014
I’m sure I’ve talked about the importance of individuality in haute couture before. It’s the raison d’être for the thing – couture clothes are complete one-offs, made to the specific measurements and requirements of incredibly wealthy and demanding women. Those demanding women come in all shapes and sizes, with different tastes.
They always have. While haute couture once set the trends – there’s an exhibition about to be launched at Paris’ Musée Galliera titled “Les Années 50, La Mode en France 1947-1957″, which lauds that golden age – it still had room for disparate voices. Balenciaga showed his unfitted suits when Dior-influenced cinched waists were at their tightest. Chanel, Schiaparelli and Vionnet had violently opposed views of dressing women, but they co-existed, and thrived.
Miu Miu gets trippy, Mary Katrantzou loves letters, Roland Mouret throws up. A last look at pre-spring 2015
Miuccia Prada enjoys having the final word. Perhaps that’s why she stole the pre-spring thunder, pitching up in Paris to show her Miu Miu collection on the eve of the haute couture collections and close the season. She does the same at the ready-to-wear, after all. On the other hand, maybe it was her acknowledgement of the new power of pre – the first ever, stand-alone Miuccia Prada-manned cruise show. It’s been dribbled into the menswear shows before, but this was a different thing entirely.
My daughter, Girl Outdoors, turns four later this month. We are deep into birthday party season at the moment – it’s all birthday cakes, jellies, ice cream. I try and try and try to get her to eat more fruit and veg than normal to compensate, but it’s pretty difficult. Actually, she hardly eats any [...]
Dogs can sometimes eat through the most extraordinary objects. After a recent bout of unsual eating, the Barking Blondes asked other dog owners for their horror stories
Further to my post yesterday about more of my stuff appearing on Independent Voices, The Independent and The Independent on Sunday’s online and print comment section, and less of it appearing on the blog, the boffins have told me that there is an RSS feed on my author page, which includes my daily catch-up feature: [...]
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