My love affair with fashion is the best kind of love affair – tempestuous, often laden with remorse, spiked with jealousy, and made better when left unconsummated. But it is also likely to be the most self affirming, supportive, and fulfilling relationship you’ll experience. How many relationships can you describe as consistently attempting to bring out your best features? Not many, I’d say.
Call it a spiralling consumerist frenzy, but fresh off the tram from a shopping expedition and I’m already making a mental note of things I
need want to buy. On the eve of every second Thursday (which just so happens to coincide with the day I get paid), I’m dreaming of that perfect white T-shirt, functional bag, or pair of leather lace up sandals that I’ve been eyeing off for months. Sound pathetic? I don’t really care. Some could call it a mindless addiction, but I genuinely think there’s much more at play than ‘needing the newest label’.
In fact, it’s not like that at all. The same way a movie buff will pine over the newest Linklater film, or an art enthusiast will save their pennies to travel to MONA and see an exhibition, someone who has a love for fashion is no different. I would argue that a fashion fiend’s ‘addiction’ actually has more merit than the obsession fans of art or film or even footy share. Those of us who have this ‘passion for fashion’ get to wear our fixation. And more than once. We get to put the things that excite us must on our skin and feel it throughout the day. We let it change the way we feel not only about ourselves, but about the world at large. Okay, that may have sounded slightly sexual and grandiose, but there’s no denying that what we wear influences a society’s culture and an individual’s sense of self.
They say that women are most likely to undergo an extreme hair makeover after a breakup. This idea of wanting to redefine one’s image, especially after a blow to the ego (or heart), is something we all experience at one point in our lives. Which is why I think shopping is almost a magical thing. Meandering through different stores, the shopper gets to try on different versions of themselves and actively choose how they want to present to the world. To me, self expression is power. And so when someone actively creates for themselves a look, or breaks out of their comfort zone in terms of style, the feeling of exhilaration is undeniable. Like makeup, clothes can rekindle our love for certain parts of our body. Sometimes it’s with a little help from those truly perfectly fitting jeans that a shopper can realise their ass-ets.
So, after justifying fashion and all it’s worthiness, I thought I’d share with you what’s currently on my perpetual and ever-changing ‘wish list’. Sometimes items are on there as a mere fantasy, meaning I know that I could never actually vindicate spending that amount of money on something. Other items are immovable, meaning I somehow never get around to buying them, or they always manage to slip too far down the list in terms of priority. I’m like some sort of nesting bird in that respect, the flashiest items grab my attention and beckon me with their glittery allure. Not literally glittery, of course, I don’t think I own anything you’d call glittery. Moving with the seasonal rotation of warm weather, to cool weather, to freezing, the list sometimes is all about coats and jackets. Right now, it’s about the Spring ‘essentials’. I say ‘essentials’ because I realise that the definition of essential means ‘absolutely necessary’, and unless someone’s stolen all your underwear, no item is ever really ‘absolutely necessary’. So they’re my Spring ‘lusts’. I watch them like a persistent lover through a glass window and toil away as they flirt with my emotions. I see them with other people and feel overwhelmed with envy. Clothes are the lovers that can treat you like shit but have you coming back for more.
Okay, my wish list.
As I mentioned earlier, my tastes oscillate constantly depending on what I see on blogs, in magazines or even people on the street.
◊ ALANA’S OCTOBER WISH LIST ◊
1. être cécile – Je Parle Francais oversize tank
Despite the French name, this New York-based label is the new creation of fashion designers Yasmin Sewell, Jemma Dyas, Kyle Robinson & Richard Normile. Inspired by the cleanliness of French fashion, être cécile uses playful printed text and streamlined colours to make a collection that is looks fun to wear at the same time as making a statement. It’s a brand that doesn’t take itself too seriously, and I like this T-shirt for its simplicity and humour. I especially like the shirts that say “you make my hard drive full”. If I was brave enough to wear it and avoid my parents I totally would.
2. Lucy Folk – Bento Rice Necklace in gold
First of all, um, I want it all. I want all the sugar. But seriously, this Melbourne-based jewellery label is amazing – all the pieces literally look good enough to eat. I chose this necklace because I feel naked after sadly loosing a necklace with sentimental value earlier this year. I’d prefer the one on the left because I mostly wear gold/rose gold jewellery. Designing since 2007, this lady has made some incredible feats in the fashion world. Her rep is growing at an incredible pace, and it’s no surprise given the range of unique, beautifully crafted and reasonably priced pieces she has in her collection. I strongly suggest watching the promotional video for her new collection ‘Sugar’ and the link is here. It’s pretty damn cool.
Here is a link to the Lucy Folk website. Her jewellery is also available at Incu.
3. Limedrop – Apple Milly Dress
Limedrop is a Melbourne-based fashion label that’s recently landed the spot in the Cathedral Arcade (near Flinders Lane, under Retrostar and next to where Alice Euphemia used be). It focuses on feminine prints and shapes, and has a great selection of undergarments, too. One of the best things about this label is that it’s beautifully made with unique designs, while also being relatively inexpensive. I actually was lucky enough to meet the designer, Clea Garrick, at an art opening when I was wearing one of her dresses, which was both awesome and slightly awkward. But she was so lovely about it, and really excited to see it on a customer! I actually have tried this dress on before and it sits really nicely, but I didn’t have the $$$ at the time to buy it. I figure it’s a nice summer dress to have – something that’s fitting for casual wear and also at night. I recommend everyone at least check out the store, if only to support local designers, but I guarantee you’ll find something there you like.
Here is a link to the Limedrop website.
4. Reebok – Classic Leather Sneakers in white
Not much needs to be said about these shoes other than they’re white and will probably get stained within the first 10 minutes of buying them. I ♥ them though. I don’t know if I’d wear them enough to justify the purchase. I’ve been looking for sneaker shoes for ages, but with ‘sports-lux’ being so goddamn hot right now, everything sells out in a flash. I envisage these being worn with blue denim jeans and a white T-shirt and I will be forever comfortable and stylish. But I don’t think I’ll ever be quick enough to grab a pair 😦 Maybe that just means I don’t love them enough. Sorry, Reebok.
Here is where they’re selling them in Melbs. Apparently they’ve only got size 7.5 left. So good on you all 7.5 size footed ladies.
5. Acne Studios – Copy Linen top
Acne is a Stockholm-based (of course) “fashion house” (as is described on the website). They’re just so freakin’ cool I can’t believe. I want everything Acne, all the time. Alas, it comes with a bit of a price tag. This T-shirt is one of those items that has been on my list for literally 6 months. I’m a firm believer in buying one item that’s high in quality but might cost a bit more, rather than 10 different items that are much cheaper but stretch, fade or shrink due to poor quality. To me, this T-shirt is like the ultimate plain white T-shirt. Why then, have I not bought it? Well, I don’t know. Because it’s not glittery enough. If you don’t see me wearing this next time I’m out, please berate me.
Here is the Acne website is 2 cool 2 handle. They’ve also opened a store at The Emporium that I may or may not be too scared to actually go into…
6. POMS – Phenomena Earring in pale pink
Another jewellery label based in Melbourne (I love my Melbourne labels), designer, Adriana Giuffrida, is doing some really playful things in terms of jewellery making. I adore these pom pom earrings, and while I see a lot of people wearing them these days it doesn’t phase me. These particular ones look like great quality (base metal silver plated snake chain), and would be fun to wear in summer. Other stuff she making is equally as awesome, especially with gemstones.
Here is the POMS website.
7. Vanishing Elephant – Lace-Up Sandal in brown
I’ve been on the hunt for a good pair of sandals for a little while now. Last summer I wore my jelly sandals almost every day, and so this summer I feel like I want something a little different. I admit that before these were on the list, I was
really into obsessed with white Milan Birkenstocks. I tried them on and they were suuuuper uncomfortable. Maybe I’ve got a very wide foot (I actually do), and just not suited to me, but I must admit I was heartbroken when I realised I can’t actually wear them. But, never fear, these shoes I think are also very cool. Yet to actually try them on. So these too may fall by the wayside.
Here is the Vanishing Elephant website.
8. NUEW – Marilyn Skinny blue pepper
I recently bought a pair of black jeans from NUEW and they’re probably the best jeans I’ve ever bought. They’re comfortable as hell, and I wouldn’t say too expensive. I love the 80s feel to these jeans, and I think the lighter colour might be good for the warmer weather. I love that high waisted jeans are in right now. It’s a good time to be alive, ladies.
Here is the NUEW denim website. I think they also stock these in FAT
9. Baggu – Canvas Backpack
Another item I’ve been eyeing off for god know’s how long. I think the fact that I wanted the white one was holding me back for fear it would get dirty, but fuck it, ya know, you only live once. Baggu have some awesome bags available, from backpack to tote, and all in your choice of simple colours or crazy prints, and each with affordable prices.
Here is the Baggu website.
10. Gorman – Breezy Tank in lilac
This little number may not look like all that much, but I tried it on in the Gorman Emporium store and fell in love. It has a beautiful woven texture, and I adore the high neckline. It’s quite a sophisticated top. I also really like this colour and find it suits my complexion. Gorman’s new Spring/Summer range is actually really exciting overall. I’m sure a few other Gorman things will find their way onto THE LIST eventually.
Here is the Gorman website.
11. A.P.C – New Wedge Sandals
Let’s make this clear. These are on the list in the most unrealistic sense. I have never spent more than $300 on shoes, and I don’t think I’ll be in the market to any time soon. But these are beautiful. A.P.C is one of my favourite brands, even though I only have one items of clothing in it. In saying that, it’s one of my favourite items, and I’ve worn it so many times but it’s kept shape and colour. A.P.C. stands for “Atelier de Production et de Creation” which simply translates to the workshop of production and of creation. It’s French. It’s chic. It’s cooler than you. We get it.
Here is a link to their website. It’s all in French. Here is where you can buy them in Melbs. They’ve also actually opened up a store next to Incu at QV which is intimidatingly stylish. I suggest not going in there wearing tracksuit pants.
SO, there you have it. A cut-down version of the wish list, I can assure you. What will most likely happen is I accidentally spend my money on other things like food and gym membership before actually buying any of these clothes. Which may ultimately be for the best. As I said earlier, an unfulfilled love is the sweetest kind.
Happy shopping, shoppers.