It’s been six months; six months of delicious anticipation since previewing the autumn winter collections at London Fashion Week. Now that the first drop of leather, furs and knits have snuggled up onto the high street rails, the real fun begins. Jaunty English capes, Earhart-inspired aviator jackets, shearling-lined boots, far flung Aztec prints - each of these brings with it a sense of history and future possibilities. Who will I be today? What will happen when I wear this? And more importantly, how does it make me feel?
Let’s face it. There’s nothing quite so inebriating as the first encounter with a lust-have garment. It’s like trying out a new lover – exciting, filled with possibilities and when the price tag forbids, a touch naughty. As Vivienne Westwood once said, ‘fashion is eventually about being naked’; and rightly so. If a garment makes you feel like an HD-ready version of Gina Lollobrigida, it’s worth the shekels.
I for one exhibit a damn near visceral reaction to clothes. The stroke of velvet and language of brocade are all so seductively tangible, it’s difficult not to provide a soundtrack to the sensation. And nothing quite beats the heady buzz of scoring that Alexander Wang jacket – the victory march down Grafton Street and that smug smile which says ‘he’s with me!’
True, such longing can sometimes lead to heartbreak (finding out Jimmy Choos are obscenely narrow) and in some cases fatal attraction (refusing to take that Annoushka ring off my finger). But as most gals know, true love is more often the case. The thought of buying a new bag to replace my love-worn Vivienne Westwood bowler feels like emotional infidelity. As for my Chloe jacket; she was worth every penny over the years. In fact as a 10 year cost-per-wear ratio goes, I probably owe Stella McCartney and Phoebe Philo a few bob.
Still, even with such trusty lovers hanging dutifully in my closet, a little window shopping never did any harm. In fact, I’m sure Ms. Lollobrigida would approve.