Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Alexander the Great

"Aspirational dressing" is a term used often fashion to describe clothes that don't necessarily suit the person you are, but rather the person you wish to become. While for most people this means a very formal style of dressing and tailoring, for me, the strongest sentiment of aspirational dressing that currently has my attention is that of designer Alexander Wang.

I am by no means some kind of super-lithe urban ingenue. But fantastic clothes like these give me the (perhaps slightly delusional) concept that dressing similarly could make me one. And that's why Alexander Wang's clothes are such a boom. He has the same "selling ice to eskimos" quality perfected previously by Marc Jacobs. No matter what he makes, people will like it because it appeals to a persona they would want to adopt.

Until very recently, I saw him as quite overrated and overpriced. After all, who needs his stuff when you can easily wear your own skinnies and a "distressed" white t-shirt for about a twentieth of the price? But that is the real genius behind his clothes. It usually takes a lot of effort and hunting around to get "the Prada look" or "the Marc Jacobs look" because they're so complex and forward. But Alexander Wang's fashion is truly democratic. Even if you can't afford his perfectly cut blazer, you can approximate it on a very shoestring budget, and even if you don't have the body type of his muse, model Erin Wasson, you can take elements of it and shift them for your body type.

So, I have attempted for the time being to put aside my fixation with vintage frills, and set my sights on a more relaxed way of dressing.These Alloy shorts are a pretty brilliant knockoff and a steal at $28.50
Sheer black tights are ridiculously cheap and easy to find. But for god's sakes, don't try to rip them! You'll go from hip to homeless in 2.5 seconds. Same goes for slouchy, worn-in tees. You probably already own five, or can steal them from your boyfriend.

Throw in some cheapie heels.

And top off with a beanie for that "fabulous" urchin look. I don't know. When you break it down into individual elements, it sounds so ridiculous, but it all seems to work.


Wendy said...

I love Alexander Wang, but when you take apart the outfits he sends down the runway, most of the stuff are completely basic. Like you mentioned, you can really get the look for so much less.

yiqin; said...

I think Alex is a genius although I agree that his clothes can be gotten for a much cheaper price! But I love his looks, his muse, everything.

Anonymous said...

i really enjoyed reading this post, you made some really astute comments. and i love that look as well, just the right amount of tough.