Be minimalist, less is more. Chic means essential, not flamboyant. Have your little black dress and nothing more. We’ve been hearing this sort of advice for years: we have to be demure, seduce with our gaze, have fluid, but ever so slightly sketched silhouettes, and carefully choose eye-catching accessories. Respect proportions, choose the right size, don’t mix too many colors. We were told that showing cleavage is vulgar, that low pony tails are the highest point of fashion, and that we shouldn’t smile too much in photos, because we look better that way, apparently. If you follow all these rules, you will most likely look very elegant. Wonderfully aesthetically pleasing. But… Are we really sure that is who we are?
Look into your closet: how much black do you see? No need to answer, it’s probably more than 50% of the clothes you own, at least for your winter wardrobe. Sure, black is a wonderful color. As Yohji Yamamoto said, «Black is modest and arrogant at the same time. Black is lazy and easy, but mysterious. But above all black says this: I don’t bother you, you don’t bother me». So, black is a state of mind, but sometimes it can also become an alibi not to ever get creative, a sort of blankie we can wrap ourselves in whenever we are sad, that then turns into an everyday fetish that we are unable to get rid of. We get used to playing it safe, we are used to not taking risks and not bend the rules too much, mostly for fear of being judged. Getting out of our comfort zone is a little like accepting the invitation from that cute guy who seems to like us, but who is also a total womanizer according to everyone we know: what if he breaks my heart, we wonder? We never even consider that we could break his heart. And we end up going out with the guy who might be a little boring, but hey, he is also so kind.
We should learn to dare, instead. We should mix colors, wear eye-catching, large earrings and shorter skirts. We should wear that oversize biker jacket we like, even if our boyfriend tells us we should wear tighter stuff, because it’s more feminine. We should get those shoes with crystals, even if we think we’ll wear them only once or twice — we might end up wearing them tens or hundreds of times instead, they might become our favorite shoes ever. We should stop caring about the people who tell us we should wear some color, if black really is what we do enjoy wearing — yes, it’s not an alibi for some people. We deserve that, if we feel we are sick of playing by other people’s rules, because if not now, when will we do this?
This season, exaggeration is a must, it is actually another trend. Look at the catwalks: must-have outerwear this season is oversize, and Vetements — one of the coolest brands around right now — has been at the helm of this trend for a few seasons; earrings are so large that they are hardly wearable, as seen at the Del Pozo show; this large amount of references, patches and embroidery was part of the elements that shot Alessandro Michele’s Gucci to fame; finally, the most instagrammed item of Fall Winter 2016-2017 was a large, red fur heart that served as Hedi Slimane’s final bow, ending his collaboration with Saint Laurent.
Trust us: the time of understatement is over. It’s time to exaggerate… Or at least, to wear whatever we like. If we think about it, it’s the only rule that makes sense — we may not end up looking more stylish doing that, but we may find ourselves feeling a lot happier.