11 November 2014

The Romantic's Bible

1982 - 2014

There are people who contribute to our lives in ways they could never know simply by sharing what they love with the world. An author writes a book, a musician sings a song, a designer creates a garment. Whether consciously or not, we come to define the memory of our lives around our experiences of the moments these people create. It can catch you entirely unawares. You hear the snippet of a song in passing during your day, and it stops you there and then in your tracks - you are transported back instantly, as a flood of emotions and memories rush over you. We all have those books, those paintings, those sounds, those smells, that mean something to us that is entirely unique. People can often get quite obsessive over these feelings. Just think about how common it is to encounter someone who has been listening to a band since they started playing, disparaging newcomers to that band's music. But I think there is space for us all to appreciate any person's work, from any time or any place, as long as it truly moves us.   

There are two fashion designers whose work means more to me than any other - Yohji Yamamoto and Ann Demeulemeester. I love the work of many other designers, but it is these two who really drew me into contemporary fashion and made me realize what it could actually be, and, perhaps more importantly, what it could feel like. Trying on their garments and moving around in them for the first time was a revelation - it just felt right, and that feeling has thankfully never dissipated. It is the reason why my wardrobe is dominated by these two designers (although Issey Miyake comes a close third thanks to the fact that I buy my t-shirts from there). 

I am too young to have experienced Helmut Lang or Martin Margiela's work when they were both designing, even though I have worn pieces from those earlier collections that they themselves actually designed. And although you appreciate the work of designers like that, it is an entirely different feeling to experiencing it (or at least a small part of it) as it actually happens. It is the difference between nostalgia for something that once was, to excitement for what is to come. Fashion is the art of the perfect moment, but at its best it is something that lives with you and ages with you. It becomes part of your life, and the moment it captures is no longer some fleeting season from however long ago, but each and every day of you life for years. 

Wearing Yohji, wearing Ann. The best way I can describe it? It's like coming home.       

Thank you Ann.


1 comment:

  1. I agree, it's a wonderful feeling to wear them. Our clothes are as much of a home to us as a house or apartment is. I do wish I had a piece from Issey Miyake when he was still designing. His work is absolutely triumphant. But it's great how his spirit lives on.