Sunday, June 15, 2008

Dressing Like Your Heroes

Photo by Super Emily

Inspiration always has to come from somewhere and the matter of style is no exception. When it comes to fashion, inspiration can come from the strangest of places - coffee shops with funny names or tiny boutiques, old antiques that look nothing like their modern adaptations, fizzy ice-cream floats that change colors before your eyes.

But usually that warm fuzzy that is a sense of style comes waltzing over to us from other people. It’s a gift that’s passed on, even from people we’ve never spoken to, moving quietly from person to person like a Grecian muse in ballet flats. These people that pass on their gift, they can be anyone in the world that happen into our day-to-day lives, even those characters that only exist on paper and on screen. Our TV-heroes can change the way we look at clothes, the way we look at ourselves, and make everything in our lives just a little bit brighter.

Behold! Some of my favorite inspirational fashionistas, both real and imaginary.

Wednesday Addams

When the Addams Family movies came out, I was so utterly thrilled! The television show had been my absolute favorite all throughout childhood (even though it was way before my time), and Wednesday Addams was by far the coolest little spunkster on the show. On television she was far more cutesy and childish, but I loved her more gloomy and all-too mature appeal in the movies. I think a grown-up Wednesday would be just as sour but with way more style, making oxfords and ribbons an absolute necessity! But just because she’s older doesn’t make her any less of a little girl – if you plan on dressing like Wednesday, don’t forget the bows!

Carrie Bradshaw

Like many other tomboys who thought they were way too cool for such a girlie show, I refused watch Sex and the City when it first came out. Later, after watching my first episode on syndicated television and instantly falling in love, I slapped myself in the face for this lapse in judgment. Imagine my surprise when I found out the show was incredibly witty, fun, and most importantly, far from average! I started watching religiously, and although I still haven’t seen every episode (All six seasons are on my birthday list! Cross your fingers!) I find it just as relatable and thrilling as the rest of the women who watch it.

Everyone has their favorite character on the show, that lovely lady who they try their best to emulate in both fashion and chatter, and mine just so happens to be the incredibly Miss Bradshaw.

Carrie is all about having fun and adding that extra dash of flavor to your wardrobe. Her motto is to dress up in the latest couture while still staying true to yourself and your tastes, no matter how crazy they may be, which is what makes her so likeable. While the other characters struggle with either too much fashion or too little, Carrie always manages to look fabulous for the occasion. I remember reading somewhere that the stylists for the show said Carrie’s look was all about mixing high fashion and thrift store finds, making Carrie even more eclectic and daring. Dressing like her is only a matter of being bright, being outgoing, and never being afraid to wear heels!

Wes Anderson

Wes Anderson, famous director and notorious auteur, just so happens to be the only real person on this list and at the same time the biggest character. When I first saw his movies, I felt like I was riding a carousel in some alternate universe where the people are a strange and eclectic bunch with hand-painted family portraits and lewd conversation over the dinner table. I had to know - what kind of an eccentric could live in a world like this and, more importantly, why aren’t more people like this!

Enter, Wes Anderson – a thrilling sir who’s all about the unusual. Decked out in an all-vintage wardrobe, he’s is a scotch-drinking kind of man who brings back the old by presenting it in a scathingly dry modern light. There’s no term coined for Anderson’s style and when searching for the words, one finds it practically impossible to describe him in both film and fashion. All in all, the best way to put it is that Anderson has a taste for the flawed. He takes the trashy, the old, the passé, and the trick of it all is that he makes those things American culture gave up on so long ago interesting again. When dressing like Anderson, everything has to be considered, no matter how outdated it may seem, because just like with his characters, he believes that everything deserves a second chance.

Penelope Wilhern

I know, I know – irony abound! But the recently-released Penelope really is one of my favorite movies! From the moment I first saw Miss Penelope, with her charmingly kitschy wardrobe and absolutely gorgeous playground-like bedroom (she has a swing in her room! How swanky is that!) I have to say I fell in love. The movie itself is like a fairy-tale, set in a hybrid of all the greatest cities where everyone knows each other and modern day magic is not amiss, and even the worst of characters are still semi-lovable.

Penelope herself is a style-icon, though, for everything about her dress is very conservative and old-fashioned but with a funky, fairy-tale edge. Color is an absolute basic, with Anthropologie-esque dresses and lots of patterns, but she stays on the mild side with oxford pumps and pattered tights. She’s half adult and half child which I admire in unspeakable amounts, a girl who wants nothing more than to explore the world and be herself, maybe finding love and friendship along the way. But she’s not afraid to be a little girl, even when she’s not anymore, and won’t let anything get in the way of her being herself.

So the question, my lovelies, is who inspires you? (And more importantly, what do they wear!)

Penelope ♥


rose said...

I love this blog! :D

i love the recent pride and prejudice, with keira knightly. If I could get away with Victorian or 19th century inspired clothing, I would. But then I really am more of a punk dresser. I dress like a boy, with girl flair.

-A new frequent reader

Penelope said...

Oh, I love Victorian dresses! That's why I really dig Japanese lolita clothing - a lot of that style is nothing but Victorian outfits but with a little more spice. (And those guys & girls pull it off so well!)

Thank you so much for your encouragement! Keep reading and if you ever want to drop me a line, don't hesitate! My e-mail in on the front page.

Penelope ♥

Rie said...

I'm very inspired by the girls in Brigid Lowry's books...they're always wearing comfortable-but-stylish clothing with really whimsical details, sort of like this: