The Paradox of Not Caring

Manolo says, the Sunday Times of the London they have the article about our muse the Miuccia Prada, published under the title In Praise of Modesty. Here is the excerpt.

If there is a fashion pioneer living today, it is Miuccia Prada. Her vision of the modern woman totally changed our attitude to sex and how we dress it up. She is fashion’s great provocateur, and when she sends models down the catwalk wearing sheer blouses buttoned severely to the neck, or black capes worn over beige shirts, or with belts pulled tightly round cardigans and socks up to the knees, you wonder, is her interest in the clothes at all, or in the opportunity to play intellectualised sexual games? Above all, how has she managed to take us all along her own special path?

When I put this to her, it’s obvious that she is not entirely sure of the answers herself. After all, she came into fashion through the back door, with no training and, initially at least, no great interest in the business. She had always had an abiding curiosity about appearance and what it says about us, though.

“I realise how powerful and important clothes are, especially for women,” she says. “They have to be useful for your life, of course, but they must also express your individual sentiment.” That Prada accepts that all fashion is role-play is what makes her such a force. She understands that the job of the truly ground-breaking designer is to decide on the roles, dress them and then present them in such a way that people all over the world want to join the cast.

Prada herself makes an unlikely éminence grise. She is neither dowdy, nor overwhelmingly chic. In fact, she looks entirely normal. Her figure is that of a woman in her fifties. Her hair is cut like most other women’s hair. She rarely wears make-up. Contrast her with another Italian icon, Donatella Versace, and you realise that she is a fashion outsider. Certainly, she avoids socialising with most other designers and runs a mile from social events. As she said to me, years ago: “I am a wife and a mother” — she has two teenage boys — “and I have many more interests than fashion. Fashion is just my job.”

But today she has amended her tune: “I’ve become impatient when people claim they don’t care about clothes. They still dress every morning, and if they are going to reject fashion, they still need clothes to show it. Style rebellion is still a form of self-expression.”

Indeed, as the Miuccia notes, claiming to not care about the clothes, to not be concerned about what one wears, is the paradox, for the clothes worn by one who claims not to care make as much the statement as those worn by one who dresses with purpose.

These inescapable facts obtain: that clothes are always necessary, and that others they will always judge us by them. These are the reasons why the Manolo he would have you dress with the purpose, to consider carefully what you would wear, and to think about the effect your clothes, and how you wear, them will have on others.

Of the course, this does not mean that you must dress to please others, nor that you should follow the lowing herd, but rather that you should be conscious of the image you are projecting.

For the example, if you wish to project the image of carefree disdain for the high fashion, be aware that your dirty t-shirt of the Oakland Raiders, torn sweat pants, and flip-flops may not be conveying that exact message, may in the stead be saying to the by passer, “Cross to the other side of the street, lest this person’s disdain for personal hygiene and grooming infect you with the parasites.”

Manolo says, the fashion, it is not the nuclear rocket brain surgery.

There are the simple rules for dressing that can be used by anyone to maximize the assests and diminish the faults, and thus project the worthy image. Likewise, there are the ways and reasons to deviate from these rules that will thus project the pleasing counter image. But the central necessity for properly using, and sometimes ignoring, the rules of the fashion and the clothing is to be thoughtful, to consider your choices carefully, and to be aware that you are always, always, always projecting the image, even when you think you are not.

P.S. Speaking of our muse the Miuccia, the Manolo he has updated his humble Prada Blog. It has the new look! It is improved!

What the Manolo Is…

Manolo says, here is this week’s list of the medias being consumed by the Manolo.

Reading…

Watching…

Reading…

Listening to…

What is there to say, but that the Manolo he was indeed saddened by the news of the death of the Shirley Horn, who had the singular voice, the singular talent.

OCT
2005
24

More from Moscow

Manolo says, the horror that is the Moscow fashion week, it continues…

One of the rules of the Manolo, it is no designing the clothes while chugging the vodka.

OCT
2005
24

Say No to the Poncho!

Manolo says, the peoples at the buyers Bergdorf Goodman, they have not gotten the message, that the fashion mania for the poncho it is indeed over.

Behold! The $3,000 ugly fringed poncho!

P.S. Many thanks to the Manolo’s internet friend the Kristin for the link.

OCT
2005
24

Fashion Trends From Russia

Manolo says, it is the fashion week in Moscow, and if those words they do not strike the terror into your heart, perhaps these pictures of what the stylish czarinas will be wearing will.

Thigh-High Leggings and Attack of the Yarn Monster Sweaters.

Aunt Fanny’s Tentacled Duvet Cover Corset Coats.

Scrap Fabric Halter Dress with Unicorn Headpiece

Boots at the Gotham City

Manolo says, it is not the secret that the Manolo likes the Gotham City Online for the boot shopping. But, shopping at the Gotham City it is the sort of shopping that requires the diligence and perseverance.

Gucci Suede Boot     Manolo Likes!  Click!

For the example, this handsome, low-heel suede boot by the Gucci, it is on the sale at the Gotham City, but, sadly, it is only available in the sizes the five and the half, and the six.

And so, because you are not the small footed girl, you must now go back to the board of drawing and look for the next boot, perhaps again the equestriany boot with the low-heels, because they are this season in the style.

Searching…searching.

Look here is another of the handsome boots!
Ralph Lauren    Manolo Likes!   Click!

This one it is from the Ralph Lauren. It is the good-looking equestrian style boot with the twist, which it is good because you do not want the equestrian boot that makes you look like the jockey of the lawn. Even the better it is almost 50% off of the normal price.

But, ayyyy! Curses, again! It is available only in the size six. Your foot it is not the size six!

And so you search the boots again.
Gratia by Cole Haan    Manolo Likes!  Click!
Finally, you find this boot from the Cole Haan. It is the very nice boot, stylish, quasi-motorcyclish, quasi-equestrianish, nearly 50% off of the regular price, and Dios Mio! it is available in all of the sizes from the five to the ten! At the last, your search it is completed!

Manolo says, the Gotham City Online, it is the good place to look for the boots, if you are prepared to really look.

Win the Shoes of the Maestro!

Manolo says, Ayyyyy! The internet friends of the Manolo at the Shoe Stor, who provided the Clear Shoe Boxes for the contest of the Manolo, they are having their own contest, one in which they are giving away the pair of shoes from the Maestro Manolo Blahnik!

OCT
2005
22

Manolo in the Guardian

Manolo says, today there is the very short and the very cryptic mention of the Manolo in the Guardian newspaper.

The best thing about Manolo’s Shoe Blog (Shoeblogs.com) is how the author constantly refers to himself as “the Manolo”.

The Manolo he would argue that there are other things about the Manolo’s humble shoe blog that are better than this, but, nonetheless, he will take these words as the compliment.

OCT
2005
21

Age Appropriate Dating

Manolo say, except she is far too smart and sassy for the likes of him.

OCT
2005
21

Swimwear for the 19th Century

Manolo says, the Manolo he cannot but welcome the return of Victorian swimwear.

In celebration, the Manolo he already placed decorous coverings on the overly suggestive “limbs” of his piano. Tomorrow he will begin the laborious process of separating the books written by unmarried female writers from those of the male authors on his book shelves.

Viva Prudish Wholesomeness!

P.S. Many thanks for the link to the always amusing, and certainly not prudish Fashion Addict.

OCT
2005
21

Retro Brown

Lario D4670    Manolo Likes!   Click!

Manolo says, this brown pump, with the look of the retro, it reminds Manolo of the spirited, tough-talking, gold-hearted “dames” of the early comedies of the Howard Hawks.

Perhaps the young Rosalind Russell she could wear the shoe like this with the tailored suit, and the small whimsical hat cocked to one side on the carefully coifed head, the sort of accessories that undermine the aggressive air of the “Do Not Toy With Me” woman.

OCT
2005
20

One More of the Runners Up

Manolo says, when the Manolo announced the winners of his contest on the Sunday last, the high quality of the entries made choosing the three winners and seven runners up most difficult indeed, and so although it was the happy occasion, it was with some sorrow that the Manolo was forced to select only ten.

One of the entries that nearly made it into the top ten, but did not, was the set of the haikus sent in by Katherine Delhotal of the Arlington, Virginia, which were based on the super fantastic shoes of the Magnolia, one of the gracious sponsors of the Manolo’s Super Fantastic Essay Contest.

So the Manolo he sent the little poems to the kind peoples at the Magnolias, hoping that they would volunteer to provide the Katherine with the prize suitable to her efforts.

And they did! The Magnolia peoples they have decided to present to the Katherine the pair of the shoes for her lovely efforts, which the Manolo now here presents along with the pictures of the shoes described in the haikus.

Allure
Allure from Magnolia    Manolo Likes!  Click!

Creeping vines on bark
Blue daisies, forget-me-nots
Asian enchantment

Anita
Anita from Magnolia Shoes    Manolo Likes!  Click!

Corduroy for the streets
Uptown in pink cool
Downtown in blue funky

Adrianna
Adrianna from Magnolia    Manolo Likes!  Click!

Golden glow at sunset
Gunmetal composed
Sultry in earthy bronze

Adore
Adore by Magnolia Shoes    Manolo Likes!  Click!

Savannah jungle cat
Silently stalking
Amid Birkenstocks, flip-flops

Avalon
Avalon by Magnolia   Manolo Likes!  Click!

Classic gross grain bow
Vibrant blooms catch the eye
Dancing, dreaming ballet