Best ways to dress for a fight: Twenty-five years too late, the liberal and mainstream worlds have begun pushing back hard against the forces of Trumpistry.
Professor's Wang's percentages are very much yesterday by now. As of today, it's all about the fight.
Luckily, the New York Times has kept us abreast of the best ways to dress for the struggle. We'll link you to a quartet of recent primers.
On January 23, Joanna Nikas, writing in Thursday Styles, produced us an important feature.
"LIFE AS A RUNWAY," the headline said. "What 11 Protesters Wore to the Women’s March on Washington."
"Tell me about your outfit," Nikas said to [Name Withheld], one of the Washington marchers.
"This is a vintage wool coat by Louis Dell’Olio," the woman replied. "He used to design for Anne Klein and Donna Karan way back in the ’70s. My pants are Karl Lagerfeld and the shoes are Jimmy Choo. And the hat I bought in London at a hat shop there."
Nikas told Name Withheld that her hat "reminds me of the beret that Che Guevara wore."
"I thought about that actually," Name Withheld replied. "It’s a little militant, because I tilt it to the side."
Last Sunday, on the front page of Styles, Vanessa Friedman extended the theme with a piece entitled, "Couture in the Shadow of the Women’s March/What does female empowerment look like in a discipline defined by fantasy and tradition?"
We're not sure why Friedman's piece referenced the women's march. Her observations came to us live and direct from Paris, and seemed to have nothing to do with earlier events in D.C.
Thoughtfully, Friedman finished like this:
FRIEDMAN (1/29/17): It’s worth noting that, while Chanel (like Gaultier) is one of the few houses left that still closes its show with a bride—Elie Saab and Ralph & Russo also cling on, but most have jettisoned that anachronism—this time around she had lost her veil and simply strode the runway in a long pink dress. There was a cascade of ruffles at the sleeves and skirt, but look closer and the latter was cut just high enough in the front to allow freedom of movement.If we might: Oh freedom!
Or, put another way: progress.
As of yesterday morning, the Times seemed determined to see how far it could push its characteristic foppistry. On the front page of Thursday Styles, Guy Trebay offered a piece which carried this headline: "Political Fashion Statements at the Men’s Wear Shows." The featured photograph sat atop a jaunty caption:
"The Private Policy presentation in New York, where a multiracial cast of models had words like 'terrorist' written on their foreheads or cheeks." The photograph filled the whole top half of the page.
At one point, Trebay let himself reminisce a bit. In fairness, most of what follows would have gone without saying:
TREBAY (2/2/17): Wearing dazed expressions that made some look as though they had forgotten to take their meds, an array of street-cast models paraded around a Chelsea showroom. The coats they wore were adapted from utility blankets slung over multiple layers. One model wore a denim jacket pulled over a woolen coat squeezed atop a nubby Aran Island fisherman’s sweater that was tucked into a pair of the baggy pants that have been all the rage in Tokyo for a while now and that are slowly making inroads in the West. Still another jacket was knotted at the neck like a scarf.The empties were a nice touch.
Streets and rail yards are familiar territory in fashion. Few can forget John Galliano’s “homeless chic” 2000 show for Dior, in which purposely raggedy models strutted onto the runway swathed in “newspapers,” clothes with torn linings or inside-out labels, frayed tulle glad rags, belts slung with little green empties of J&B whiskey.
Also yesterday, on the front page of Arts, Cara Buckley reviewed the current state of political acceptance speeches at Hollywood's let's-give-ourselves-some-awards shows. "If current trends hold," Buckley reported, "using stage time at the Academy Awards to take a stand won’t be just de rigueur, but expected."
It sounds like Trump's days will be few!
In fairness, the foppishness of such pieces doesn't completely define the Times. But this is part of the New York Times, as was twenty-five years of perfect political bullshit paving the way for Trump.
How could we have done it: How could we have omitted Matthew Schneier's January 24 piece, "Men’s Fashion Designers Grapple With the Rise of Trump?"
Like Friedman, Schneier wrote from Paris, France, where Trump was taking some serious lumps at a couture klatch:
SCHNEIER (1/24/17): Maybe it was happenstance that, as President Trump spent months campaigning on his business experience, the idea of business and businessmen seeped into collections, even if only to be batted away. Jonny Johansson, the creative director of Acne, said he started designing his new collection with the notion of “an ’80s businessman.” Mr. Johansson waited a beat. “I had to reform him.”Johansson, creative director of Acne, was hitting Trump extra hard.
His models wore suits and tailored jackets, but they came in the kind of bulky, hairy fabrics and modishly rounded shapes unlikely ever to be seen in a boardroom.
“Nobody wants to be a businessman anymore,” Mr. Johansson said.
If you're like us, you dream of the day when Trump will be frogmarched out of the White House wearing bulky, hairy fabrics, along with rounded shapes which are foreign to the boardroom and to the Oval.
Live and direct from Paris, France, the Times was letting us dream.