It was London Fashion Week a few weeks back. I knew it was upcoming because a brochure displaying overpriced textiles weighed down my weekly newspaper. It’s a shame I don’t have a fire that needs stoking – it went straight in the recycling.
My opinion of fashionistas is about the same as my opinion of slimy politicians. Truth be told, it’s not been helped by my encounters with two stylists; one a childhood terror, who bossed us all around from her self-elected pedestal, the other I tried to work with on a project years later. It would seem that to be a stylist you have to be an egocentric narcissist with no thought for the feelings of others, but perhaps I was just unlucky. Designers do at least design the clothes, stylists just use others’ clothes to dress a model – the Emperor’s New Clothes of the Emperor’s New Clothes.
Anyway, I was minded as to how far removed Fashion Week is from real people and real clothes (in the same way Michelin-starred restaurants bear no relationship to what people actually eat) by my recent despairing search to find a pair of lightweight trousers. I wanted some that weren’t either made of linen (creased forever more in the way a car loses value when driven off the dealer’s forecourt) or look like pyjama bottoms - these nightmarish patterned clown garb make up ALL other casual trousers. What I wanted was what used to be called chinos I believe – a lightweight, mostly cotton mix, with a couple of handy, possibly zipped pockets to pop your phone and keys in when striding off on a summer walk.
Wearily I trudged round all the chain shops and even some boutiques with no luck before facing the inevitable. Once the shops were stuffed with chinos, but women clearly don’t go striding off any more. They lounge in their pyjama bottoms or sit on yachts with staff to iron the sodding linen trousers.
It ends on a happy note, however. I stumbled into good old Mountain Warehouse looking for a backpack and there were rows of them, nodding and twinkling in the breeze. I got two pairs - I would have bought more, but those were the only two left in my size in the sale. So Fashionistas can jog right on (or totter in their heels), I’m striding off once more.
some of these...
Rants appeared as ‘My Pet Peeves’ for a blog on The Argus. Everyone has pet peeves. Maybe yours is 'people who have pet peeves'. That's fine. You bog off and be peevish about that. These are my peeves and I'll cry if I want to.