Sunday, November 25, 2012

Free advertising for H&M

I'm sorry I keep writing about clothes.

Anyways I somehow missed that Maison Martin Margiela was doing a collaboration with H&M. ("What's that jacket, Margiela?" --Kanye West.)

I can't afford any of these things, and also there's no H&M nearby, but the collection appeals to me in every way.

Things it has:

1. A coat made out of a duvet, and you can actually take off the duvet cover and wear that as a different kind of jacket, and plus the sleeves are removable:

2. A clutch purse made out of metallic faux leather that looks like a giant candy wrapper (and, on the guys' side, a fanny pack as big as a backpack):

3. A purse that you wear upside down (it actually has a zipper on the "bottom"):

4. A dress made out of two different dresses (below). H&M describes this as "half lined," which is the first time I've ever seen that in a clothing description. Also, there is a dress made entirely out of dress lining, and many other pieces made out of incorrectly used materials/materials masquerading as other things--a men's jacket made out of belts, a belt made out of a watch band, jeans sewn inside out, tops made out of scarves, a dress made out of car-seat leather, and skin-colored leggings with a fishnet print on top.

5. Beyond the candy wrapper, a ton of giant things, including this necklace that looks like a huge key chain. There's also a women's peacoat big enough for Mamadou Ndiaye, and a massive turtleneck with "extremely long sleeves," which is the thing I'd most buy for myself.

But the single awesomest thing, that made me write this post and that reminded me of Proust, is this linen tablecloth set, that is printed with a photorealistic image of a tablecloth after a party.

Here is a close up of the napkins:

It is so beautifully executed too--I mean what kind of party was this? It looks like a party with ribbons and confetti that were then covered with a thick layer of ash. No one had time (or everyone was too careful) to spill their wine or drop bits of food.

It's great how a lot of the clothes put on a good show of being multifunctional (that split dress, for example, or the sweater you'll never outgrow), but are actually deeply impractical. I think I particularly like this collection not only for its jokiness or narrative or fairy-tale proportions, but also because it doesn't seem to give a shit about being "body-conscious." Most everything, except for the shirts and leggings that are supposed to resemble skin, would not flatter anyone's figure. I never like those designers who, in Vogue or wherever, talk about their careful study of the feminine form, their strategic darting and pleating to bring out the body, and especially how such garments give women self-confidence. I don't think self-confidence goes that way. How about clothing designed to make invisible and conceal the body--or something that tries to make you lose confidence in yourself and the world around you? (The skirt that looks like you didn't realize it got hitched up in your underwear when you went to the bathroom--the fake-sequin dress that shows that you are clearly a fraud--the tiptoeing person who actually has plexiglass heels?) So you can expose yourself in a different way. But what I like even more is the option to sequester yourself away in these clothes, those huge coats in particular, and hide.

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