As some of London is waking up, other parts are just going to bed...
Where did they come from/get chucked out of? Where are they going? And will she ever wear those shoes again?
(Actually I must confess to a number of disasterously uncomfortable evening ensembles including - only 6 months ago: you'd think I'd have learned by now - heels so beautiful yet so uncomfortable that they stood beside me all evening like a piece of 'shoe sculpture' while I carried them from room to room in stockinged feet).
Now my rather public stint at the Wellcome is over (I think they're scrubbing it off today) I've decided to start showing more of my work process.
In my fashion work, my biggest inspiration is never the catwalk but everyday style. I'm always stunned when an outfit that surprises me but that also works on the street (as Gabrielle Chanel said, "An elegant woman should be able to do her marketing without making housewives laugh").
I saw this woman sitting in the Blanc Brasserie restaurant in Oxford yesterday, and made a quick sketch.
She must have been in her 50s or possibly even early 60s, her beautiful tanned and lined heart-shaped face sporting a permanent private-joke grin. She was dressed in a cobalt sweater that fitted her neat figure perfectly, and a brown felt fedora over her grey-tone wrap-around glasses, which she didn't take off all lunch.
In an industry where most models and many garments (minishorts, platform heels, anyone?) seen designed for the very young, it's easy for an older woman to feel lost. With a nod to the currently fashionable (that hat, the cobalt of the sweater) this woman preserved her identity along with a strong sense of style, it seemed, effortlessly.