Céline resort 2012 Proenza Schouler resort 2012 Stella McCartney resort 2012 Chloë Sevigny for Opening Ceremony The Row resort 2012 Givenchy resort 2012 Jason Wu resort 2012 Band of Outsiders resort 2012 Louis Vuitton resort 2012 Organic by John Patrick resort 2012

Resort 2012 — A White Collar Affair

I had planned to pen a fully-fledged print piece (or for a magazine’s online component) addressing the inrush of white collars that hit the showrooms this resort 2012, perhaps touching on the historic and socioeconomic ramifications of what such a loaded motif as a “white collar” could possibly connote (or not) of our world at large—and fashion’s relevance therein.

Altuzarra Resort 2012

Altuzarra Resort 2012

Alas, due to silly life things (pressing work obligations and deadlines coupled with schoolwork and exams out of town), I have yet to find a free moment to develop anything semi-intelligeble or worthwhile on this whole resort 2012/white collar notion.  So here are a few hare-brained thoughts, seeing as I have yet to come to any firm conclusions myself on the matter…

Céline Resort 2012

Céline resort 2012

I reckon it would be foolish to assume that this trend bears any pertinency on our economy in the way that we may initially perceive (in the standard sense of the term apropos to White Collar crime, white-collar professionals, etc.).  After all, white collars—when unaccompanied by a suit, that is—bore altogether different implications at one time, as I was reminded upon rereading John Updike’s acclaimed A & P (1961) this past week.

Chloë Sevigny for Opening Ceremony Resort 2012Chloé Resort 2012

Chloë Sevigny for Opening Ceremony resort 2012, Chloé resort 2012

In the midst of quitting his job as New England grocery store clerk, Updike’s teenage narrator Sammy removes his uniform (a white apron and bowtie) ostensibly in angst over his employer’s treatment of young bikini-clad customers.  You probably have already read the classic (it is well-nigh a requisite in most American schools), but in case missed the boat and are curious: The freedom portrayed by the bathing-suited girls alludes him, and he ends up alone in the white shirt that his mother had starched for him.  Poor Sammy.  

[There’s a short film adaptation of A & P here, starring Sean Hayes and Amy Smart in all their circa 1996 glory.]

Peter Jensen Resort 2012Peter Jensen Resort 2012

Peter Jensen resort 2012

Then again, the wealth of white collars this resort season could merely allude to designers’ optimism that by catering toward white-collar customers (in the most traditional, affluent sense), such a clientele would in turn snap up their “white-collar” togs.  [E.g., Stefano Pilati’s resort 2012 Yves Saint-Laurent showing.]  Although I have a sneaking suspicion that Elizabeth Warren and (chic) economists on both sides of the aisle would be quick to debunk ascribing the trend to that rationale.  

Carven F/W 2012

Carven by Guillaume Henry

Carmen de Tommaso (Mme. Carven) was famously a fan of peter pan collars and white cuffs—veritable signatures of early Carven.  The house is flourishing under Guillaume Henry’s helm; who, as it is oft-reported, is doing wonders carrying the Carven torch into the 21st century.  Perhaps the rest of the fashion flock is finally catching onto his sought-after propensity of topping his “French cool girl” collections with a trademark Carven peek-a-boo white collar (sometimes betwixt a bola tie)?

Acne resort 2012

Or plausibly I am reading way too much into this, and white collars’ coinciding, collection-wide presence is merely a testiment to how pretty and crisp and clean they are—evidentiary of their remarkable ability to add a demure and ladylike touch to even the sultriest of ensembles.  

Burberry Prorsum Resort 2012

Burberry Prorsum resort 2012

So, white collars are a thing this resort 2012.  And frankly, I don’t know why.

Oh and here’s an illuminating interview with John Updike (1932-2009) on A & P, which is mildly germane to this whole spiel, sort of:

An Interview with John Updike

Be sure to pick up the November 2010 issue of Vogue China — featuring coverstars Patricia van der Vliet and Karlie Kloss lensed by Max Vadukul in Louis Vuitton — to view the preliminary images of Annie Leibovitz's first-ever Gap China campaign. It was a thrill of a lifetime to represent the United States in the San Francisco-based brand’s advertisements kicked off in tandem with the launch of their first retail stores in The People’s Republic of China.
More images and a behind-the-scenes chronicle forthcoming…

Be sure to pick up the November 2010 issue of Vogue China — featuring coverstars Patricia van der Vliet and Karlie Kloss lensed by Max Vadukul in Louis Vuitton — to view the preliminary images of Annie Leibovitz's first-ever Gap China campaign. It was a thrill of a lifetime to represent the United States in the San Francisco-based brand’s advertisements kicked off in tandem with the launch of their first retail stores in The People’s Republic of China.

More images and a behind-the-scenes chronicle forthcoming…

Louis Vuitton Fall/Winter 2010

STRIKE A JUXTAPOSE — "Celia" by American artist John Graham circa 1944 vs. Louis Vuitton by American designer Marc Jacobs Fall/Winter 2010 (as styled for the “Fifties Flair” category of the 2010 Fashion’s Night Out: The Show event)

… In the early 1940s Graham underwent a radical philosophical transition, during which his belief in Marxism and psychoanalysis was replaced by more magical thinking. His taste for modernism shifted to the old masters, particularly those of the Renaissance. “Celia” was painted during these transitional years and is one of the many portraits of imaginary women dating from this time. In these paintings he achieved a monumental reinterpretation of classical art. Here, the calm and dignity of the lovely woman, her elegant silhouette, and her monumental solidity are reminiscent of ancient Roman portraiture, of Ingres, and of Raphael, while the forms, as well as the curious sense of detachment from place and time hint at biomorphic Surrealist sculpture. The tension between the figure and the flat pictorial structure belies Graham’s avowed dismissal of modernism. He maintained that he gave his sitters staring (sometimes crossed) eyes not as an expressive device, “but as a means to anchor space to a point in the room, to create more tension…to make the figures immutable, fixed and timeless.” [read more at The Metropolitan Museum of Art]

*This is the first in a series of forthcoming STRIKE A JUXTAPOSE posts that will pit various images and videos from disparate media against one another.