Wednesday, 23 April 2014

NORMCORE // THE NEW FOUND ART OF BEING BLAND



I'm still trying to get my head around the 'Normcore' trend that's currently hashtagging the hell out of my social media feeds.  Phrases like, 'understated cool' and 'nondescript style' are being thrown around. 
Glossy snaps of bloggers in head to toe black or a simple cut shirt and trousers with a beanie are the being used as the posters babes of the trend. 


However delving a little deeper, I'm soon to realise that it's not all as cool as it seems. In fact it's quoted as 'coolness that opts into sameness.'  It's play it safe fashion.  Fashion for people who don't like fashion.  It's Steve Carell's character at the beginning of Crazy, Stupid, Love before the fast-talking Ryan Gosling comes along and gives him a suit-over.  Because frankly he won't get anywhere in life dressing Normcore.  Until now, maybe.



This is what they want you to think Normcore is:



This is what it actually is:


It encompasses the desire to fit in rather than stand out.  The backlash against the sartorialistic world of high-end couture, the bloggers turning the streets into a catwalk with their brightly-coloured plumage and labels such as Kenzo and Celine blazoned across their sweaters.  Not any more sister.  

Two seasons ago, it was hip to be 'square' with teens and shiny-looking TV presenters donning plain white tees with 'GEEK' and 'NERD' across them in bold font.  Now that's gone even further, with it now being fashionable to be the anti-fashion, rather than the pretend slogan salute to it.  
The awkward, I dress for practicality rather than style is now popular, apparently? I'm so confused.


Normcore hits back to the early 90's, the slacker-look found in early episodes of Friends, when Chandler was still kinda handsome sporting grey sweatshirts, denim jeans and a mass of floppy hair. The look is functional; no-logo basic trainers, polo-neck sweaters, even grey joggers as trousers.  Steve Jobs and Jerry Seinfeld are cited as style icons in this fuss-free trend.  It's basic verging on backward. 


Individuality plays no part in this idea that is 'Normcore.'  Blending in is what it's all about. Hmm. Is it really cool to be bland? After years of hearing 'stand out!,' 'be creative!' -we're now being told boring is better?!  Who wants to be different when you can all look the fucking same?! Hmm.  
The fashion industry is so very clever at making us think something is on-trend and stylish when 5 minutes ago we hated it.  Remember the revival of Clogs.... How long did that last?



And last season's ugly shoe is back for round 2 with the Birkenstock, the classic comfort Normcore shoe.  The sort of shoe seen on 50+ couples on a city break, teamed with socks (so on-trend) worn with khaki shorts and a basic crew-neck tee.  These people are now the epitome of fashion.  Topped off with a stupid-ass bucket hat. Tourist-chic ay? Although I will admit to buying some ugly looking sandals recently...


New-balance trainers, a Dad-favourite, are now a sidewalk regular paired with plain ribbed sports socks and a baseball cap.  Brands are already latching onto this anti-trend with Gap tweeting about their Normcore staples. It's not a real thing!!!!!!


Normcore Staples:
-Basic crew neck tee's - white, black, grey...dark green if you're feeling colourful.
-Sweats.  A big, baggy no-logo salt and pepper jumper to go over all your basic tees.  And some matching joggers if you really want to push the slacker-look.
-A baggy denim shirt.
-Classic 90's blue-denim jeans.  Be them Mom-style, Levi's, baggy boyfriend or even stolen from the original Normcorer himself - your Dad.
-Plain white sneaks to go with everthing.  
-Birkenstocks and socks. 
-Baseball cap or a bucket hat depending on your mood.

Basically anything bland or basic or something your Dad will still have knocking about if he isn't already wearing it.


'But why would you want to dress like us?'  



But where will the crossover be? How will FaceHunter, and Tommy Ton and all the other style snappers now spot the difference between a Normcore wannabe and a regular Joe who only owns Fruit of the loom t-shirts.  The new Normcore crew are just faking it, and your comfy, low-key clothes you already own are the real deal.  So for all you practical shoppers out there, this is your moment to shine.  



images sourced // vogue.com/tumblr/pholondon/americanapparel
follow me on instagram // @romillygirl

Friday, 7 March 2014

ALEXANDER MCQUEEN AW14 //PFW

Sarah Burton's latest offering for Alexander McQueen AW'14 show was a 'Wild Beauty' inspired extravaganza. Plucked right out of a fairytale, the models pranced through a heather-filled landscape illuminated with hazy moonlight. There was less construction and corseting in the pieces, a much softer silhouette than the usual Alexander McQueen affair.  

The models pale-faced complexions mimicked the trapeze, childlike proportions of the clothes. An innocent, ethereal element was key throughout - delicate details, embroidered organza's and virginal smocks in broderie anglaise. 

The fairytale turned dark with witchy, owl-like ensembles. Hand-cut feathered coats to create the illusion of moth's wings were just spectacular. The broderie anglaise knee-high boots with tie-up detailing, and fur accessories finished the looks with a
whimsical feel to it. 


A beyond-dreamy collection. The billowing smock dresses with star embroidery are definitely my favourite. My favourite collection of PFW by far.





images //vogue.com style.com
follow me on instagram @romillygirl









Friday, 21 February 2014