I don’t know about you, but my name is Rachel. Over at my personal style blog, Pizza Rulez, my bread and butter is telling the folks at home what’s what. Whether it’s tuxedos for the ladies, speaking in the languid WASP tones of William F. Buckley, or what makes a shoe a whizbang shoe, my weekly trend reports are the go-to guide for my parents when they want to know what I’m doing.
But reporting on what’s already there is easy; anyone from a journalist to a cartographer can do that. So as we move towards the future, I’d like to share with you my top three throbbingly trendy trends to come. Like the twist and disco, these are going to sweep the nation. Everyone is going to do every single one of these things, and you’re going to love it. Or probably not. But that doesn’t mean this stuff isn’t too hip to be true; way, way cool; so not square; alert; awake; aware. And so I present a totally elitesville trend forecast for 2013.
Katharine Hepburn was all cheekbones and bon mots and non-rhotic r’s. As the Lincoln Center exhibit Dressed for Stage and Screen shows, she was also all pants. Though the exhibit focuses on her performance garb, it rightly confronts you at the entrance with a high-flying selection of her infamous trousers. Her costumes were usually long, lean gowns that emphasized her 18” waist and made her look something more kore than merely statuesque, but she was nuts about pants offstage. Nuts, people. She used to tell men who told her they preferred women in skirts to try a skirt themselves. I guess that explains Kanye West.
Regardless, pants are going to be where it’s at. And I don’t mean jeans, which, unless made of like leather or zebra tongues or whatever, are all pajama jeans. I mean pants with pockets that fit your hands, pants that let your legs breathe, pants that are tailored, pants that are sexy because they fit perfectly but not tightly, pants that are going to make some corporate type in the corner office on the 55th floor bite his pen and say to his assistants, “What are these pants I keep hearing about?” Go get some pants, and even if you think they fit perfectly, take them to the greatest tailor in town and see what he thinks. Because only the best for you.
And while we’re on the topic, goddess Kate has been shirked for far too long in favor of her (in the familial and cultural sense) very distant cousin Audrey. The woman skateboarded, for God’s sake. Wouldn’t you prefer to see this hanging in the apartment of every boring girl you went to college with?
Dressing Like Authors
People buy stuff because celebrities wear it, because bloggers hawk it, because they saw it in some vaguely familiar collection of papers called a magazine. The moment is near for us to start wearing something because we saw it on someone who wrote a good book or a zippy magazine article.
What’s an author dress like? That’s a good question. They probably like most of us do. Ah, authors: they’re just like us! That being said, there are, at this very moment, some really turned-out people writing things down and then getting them published. And with the release of The American Reader (founder and EIC and occasional BULLETT contributor Uzoamaka Maduka showed up to an interview with the Observer wearing a cool outfit), we shouldn’t be wanting for inspiration. Stephanie LaCava, who just released the killer An Extraordinary Theory of Objects, is an editor-at-large, after all, and Shala Monroque its creative consultant. So, yeah, authors might be getting glossy next year. Fashion and art have been necking below 14th Street for a bit too long now, anyways.
Far from a decline of l’art of writing into bald celebrity, this may be a hint that literature is a-fixin’ to incorporate itself once more into the abyss of popular culture. Wouldn’t it be neat to have a Public Intellectual again? Think Joan Didion attending meetings with editors in her Chanel suits, Mary McCarthy writing on the train in her Ferragamos. It’s only a matter of time before Franzen is muttering in Central Park, “That bird shit on my Cucinelli overcoat!”
My grandmother went through a phase of buying me animal-shaped purses: stuffed animals hollowed out and zipped up for the carrying. There was an over-the-shoulder dachshund and a little pig…well, I suppose it was a porcine minaudière. On a recent trip home, I was digging through the attic because whoa man, nostalgia, and I came upon them. They seemed blessed with fresh charm. I’ve been toting them on the regular since, which is great, because if I get lonely at a party, there it is: a friend.
These aren’t just my cockamamie ideas. Mandy Coon’s bunny bag has been in every Happening Girl’s Guide to Navigating the Galaxy for Guaranteed World Domination for a few years now. And I’ve long coveted Larissa Hadjio’s Daja bag, a crab-shaped clutch, which has a flop to it that is disarmingly charming. Guardians of arm-crook cheekiness—Yazbukey, Charlotte Olympia, Lulu Guinness—always seem to have some great little animal in their collections.
It’s high time these babies transcend simple zoological novelty. Because jeez, do people need to relax about bags. When you’re out at night at a glossy nightclub in an uncomfortable dress and shoes that look like really chic potatoes with a super flossy bag, are you honestly thinking, “I adore my statement clutch”? When someone tells you they love your big work bag, do you respond, “Thank you, I love its elegant lines and superluxe calf leather that make for a new take on minimalism”? Didn’t Jil Sander’s paper bag purse make you giggle? So let’s take our bags a little less seriously–and out for a walk. On a leash. Unless it’s a bird bag. Let that honeydip fly free.