Gucci Hysteria boots // Gucci Jackie Bag // Vintage skirt // Pandora necklace // ALYSHAALEX earrings // Tiger of Sweden hat // Sentaler trench coat.
Before I had formally admitted to myself that I wanted to have a career in the fashion industry, I was subconsciously already putting in hours of research. You know, instead of rushing home to slip into a self-induce TV coma after school I would sit at my computer clicking through all the ready-to-wear slideshows on Style.com, for hours. (Imagine if AdSense was back then what it is now… my impressions could have easily accounted for a good portion of Anna Wintour’s wardrobe allowance or something like that).
I drank those collection images like glasses of water on a sticky summer afternoon. They were everything to me. They were survival. It may sound trite to equate my love for fashion with survival; many have OMG DIED for fashion before me. But isn’t there something implicit in our communal life-or-death attitude about it?
Isn’t Gucci’s Hysteria collection something that will forever remain emblazoned in my mind as a moment of pure self-discovery? It’s like I didn’t fully know myself until I saw Giannini’s leather-fringed riding boots and Babushka-worthy, tapestry coats. If identity is the only chance humans have at survival, then Gucci’s Fall 2008 collection has given me life. I’ll carry it forever in my DNA along with brown eyes and high cholesterol; my evolutionary story depends on it.
Of course, I’ve made it my own as it barely resembles anything that Frida sent down the runway that season (I just checked). Just like any memory, it has taken a visual form that hardly resembles its objective reality. But why slavishly copy a runway look when allowing it to ferment and commingle with all that other shit going on inside can produce a much more authentic result? Like this outfit, I dare say it’s OK to toot my own horn here when this is essentially a bricolage of everything that’s happened to me since 2008, using Gucci as my reference point. Maybe you try it next? Pick a moment in your fashion history – as you remember it – and see what happens when you try to turn it into an outfit.
Dressing by memory, isn’t that the best kind of fashion?
Photography by Alexander Liang.