I kind of love it when something fashion-y comes along and renews my love for something I've all too shamefully ignored for a while. Richard Nicoll's ode to the Thin White Duke, with hints of vintage erotica and Mariano Fortuny, did just that.
Those trousers are impeccably draped and I need a pair in my life, stat. I'll never give up the, like, two pairs of skinny jeans I own (second skin), but I just love the elegance of a well-tailored, voluminous wide leg. The way Nicoll layers sheers and pleats, pairing them with leather bustiers and Lurex and PVC pants for an ever-so-slightly naughty wink...it manages to be androgynous and alluringly feminine in equal measure. I also like to think that the orange cheeks were another clever homage to Bowie as the Thin White Duke.
To be honest, most womenswear designers who reference Bowie just elicit an eyeroll from me. It usually means a hackneyed, glittery collection of glammed-out Ziggy castoffs, and I'm pretty tired of that. Of course the Ziggy Stardust albums have their allure, and there's always something to be mined out of the otherworldly, all-out performance element of true glam rock; we could go into an overdone treatise on sexuality and how one defines CAMP, but that's another discussion for another time. But I was always a Duke girl...the first Bowie song I'd ever heard, if I recall correctly, was "Golden Years." I'd already developed a major interest, both academically and sartorially, I guess, in the Weimar era of German (more specifically Berliner) history, and TWD's stark, Teutonic glamour really appealed to me. A crisp white button-down, black vest, those black wide-legged trousers again: that's it. An equally monochromatic stage show illuminated only by blinding white lights. The mechanical, but somehow still achingly romantic (oh, Bowie, you plastic Soul Man), driving chug of "Station to Station." I mean, I'm glossing over the cocaine abuse, paranoia, dubious allusions to fascism, and witchcraft for convenience. I do love that shit. Here's a photo of Bowie drawing the Tree of Life for kicks.
The Thin White Duke, not to mention Thomas Jerome Newton from The Man Who Fell to Earth, has long influenced menswear, but it's just nice to see it done with such power and sex appeal for women. Thank you, Richard Nicoll. You've indirectly renewed my infinite, but dormant, love for David Bowie, and thank goodness for fashion sometimes. He's been surprisingly absent from my last.fm charts, and hey! It's just in time for the EPIC re-release of Station to Station.
One of you must love me enough to drop $150 on this as a Christmas present to me. Actually, I'm torn between the boxset and Chanel's Cuir de Russie exclusive. So make up your mind. In the meantime, I'll pop on The Man Who Fell to Earth; it's a terrible movie, really, but as far as Bowie eye candy is concerned, it sure as hell beats The Hunger. Never before has a movie so overpromised in its first ten minutes, only to crash and burn in a vapid, hyper-stylized 80's FAIL.