Wednesday, October 21, 2009

After Coco avant Chanel

Coco avant Chanel 01


I do not know a lot about Chanel couture, and how its foundations drew a lot from menswear, but the rebelliousness of Gabrielle Chanel is what hooked me to the movie Coco avant Chanel.

The riding vest she is wearing here reminds me of a chopped coat featured on The Sartorialist.

Coco avant Chanel 02


The light that she brings to a room is muted and spare — almost severe.

Coco avant Chanel 03


But it is that ambiguity and sharpness that gives her designs their edge.

Coco avant Chanel 04


She cut through the patterns set by male standards, sheared off frivolity, and prized comfort.

Coco avant Chanel 05


But it is also her sheer determination that I admire — apparently gray and steely, but hiding flecks of color.

Coco avant Chanel 06


It is what is hidden and controlled that matters.

Coco avant Chanel 07


Now if only I can stop myself from scrambling for the nearest white and navy boat shirt to fulfill an old craving.

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