Sunday, 28 September 2008

Fashion Tips for Zadar

Two important tips if you wish to keep a low sartorial profile in Zadar.
1) Do not do floral. Neither the Laura Ashley / Liberty stuff nor the mad Scandinavian sort a la H&M / Marimekko is acceptable.
2) Do not tuck your top into your high waist, no matter what the fashionista gods of Milan, New York and London have proclaimed e.g

Vogue UK May 2008: Jessica Stam by Patrick Demarchelier, "The Sheltering Sky"

Saturday morning is when the great and the good of the city do their shopping, have coffee with chums and family, do a passeggiata or promenade of the Callelarga (the main drag of the old town) and generally watch and be watched.

The good people of Zadar all look very chic with a pared-down uniform of large sunglasses, low slung skinny jeans and lots of dark hues. But nonetheless, I, in my cultural ignorance of most things after 1815, decide to sport a full floral skirt of Scandinavian origin with a high waist and my jumper tucked in before popping out for a coffee and a spot of window-shopping.

Woah. Now, in London I am used to being on the conservative side of fashion, particularly in East London where the arty types can do wonderful things with winkle pickers, trilbies and old net curtains. I do not crave nor warrant attention for my personal style but I will grant that I take a general interest in developments. Hooray, I cry, for the return of the high waist! No longer shall my kidneys be cold during the winter. Huzzah, I shout, for cinched in waists like Marilyn Monroe! Not all of us are blessed with the lissom hips of a school boy so when fashion sides with those of us more akin to a pear than twig in our figure, Youpee! I bellow, before rushing out to embrace the trend whilst it lasts. Hence the floral, high-waisted full skirt inspired (albeit tenuously) by the New Look of Christian Dior c. 1952.

But back to the “Woah”. People really do look. Not stare, that would be too strong a word for the particular variety of scrutiny that one is subjected to. The throngs of Callelarga parted slightly as I rambled along, people’s head turning ever so slightly over their coffees to get a glance through their sunglasses, a quick up-and-down survey and assessment of the skirt in question and by default, me. All a bit disconcerting and makes my alternative career option as paparazzi-harassed Hollywood megastar slightly less appealing.

Upon bumping into a couple of Croatian acquaintances my suspicions about the skirt were confirmed. Apparently it wouldn’t be so bad if my top wasn’t tucked in. Who would have thought that such a simple change could deflect all the attention and whispers of the good denizens´ internal fashion policemen?

Clearly the phrase “Le geek, c’est chic” has not arrived here yet so until it does, my floral skirt and I shall go and lurk in the archives.

Maybe the teenage boys with long hair are on to something. They have safety in numbers thus do not warrant looks from people, aside from a rather grumpy wannabe scholar in a floral skirt. Is this perchance a case of “Pot, this is Kettle. You’re black” ?

1 comment:

Mike and Ree said...

stay chic!! tuck it in, walk with your head high, and who knows then good burgers of the town may soon take on the style... or maybe simply stop glancing your way!!