Chambray, Sky or Navy? As long as your are blue, I’ll love you..
Now that we have White out of the way, I decided to tackle Blue. I’ll go out on a limb and say this – I suspect everyone likes blue or at least some shade of blue. Blue says cool, comfort, cozy, effortless, put-together and many more things, without even trying.
Blue doesn’t try to stand out. It lets you shine, by taking a back seat. In denim, it is the color of the cowboys, the 60s, and Americana. In Chambray it became the color of the US Navy (borrowed from the French, of course). In royal and cobalt shades, the Queen rocks it. In Gingham and light blue, it belongs to Dorothy.
In varying hues, it
belongs belonged to the working class man – coal miners to cops. Somewhere in the last 50 years, working women and home makers alike embraced blue and made it their own. Jeans were officially introduced for women in the 1930s. In the next couple of decades, they were embraced like there was never a time without them in women’s fashion. Sailor Pants and Denim subcultures kept reaching new heights with each decade that passed.
When we wear blue in basic, every day fabrics, are we unconsciously telling the world that we, along with men, can handle activity, responsibility and the metaphorical ‘heavy lifting’? Are we implicitly communicating that even if we love our pinks, silks and taffeta, we can still be no-nonsense in denim, chambray and navy? Did the women who came before me and who fought for equal rights in the 60s and 70s need their Blues to convey rebellion and independence? Was it a way of defying patriarchy?
I don’t know. May be it’s all my head. Paraphrasing Miranda Priestly from The Devil Wears Prada, ‘…However, that blue represents millions of dollars and countless jobs and its sort of comical how you think that you’ve made a choice that exempts you from the fashion industry when, in fact you’re wearing a sweater that was selected for you by the people in this room from a pile of stuff’
So, it could just be that blues textiles are easier to manufacture. Plainer the fabric, easier to wash, easier to make. Isn’t it convenient for fashion brands and clothing companies if men and women wore the same kind of fabrics?
Let me stop my ramblings here! Below are some of the dresses I am currently loving. As usual, all of them are not in my price range or budget for summer. That doesn’t stop me from loving them.
Dress 1: I have already waxed poetic about how much I love the shape of this dress in a previous post. The very sweet blogger behind sont des mots let me know MM LaFleur fabrics could be a hit or miss. I have decided to take a chance on them this year. I might actually bite the bullet and order this next month. I will keep you posted about what I think if I decide to keep it. The Inez dress is manufactured in USA. (Not all MM Lafleur clothes are manufactured in USA. I am still building my notes on the brand. They have been very open about it.)
Dress 2: I first heard of Brora through Lady Sarah’s posts. Their cashmere (both fabric and end product) is still made in Scotland. I decided to check out their USA online site about a month ago, I think. In the hot desert that I live in, I have no use for more than 1 or 2 sweaters, which I already own. I stumbled upon Brora’s dress section and it was love at first sight! Some of their silk chiffon dresses are ‘Oh, So Pretty!’ I loved this navy linen dress a lot. It seems perfect for work. Brora’s cotton dresses are made in Lithuania from start to finish. I am in the process of finding out more details about the labor conditions in their ‘contractor factories’ outside of Scotland, by contacting the customer service department. But, I have a feeling that what I’m going to hearing will be good, given the brand’s core values.
Dress 3: I believe A.P.C releases at least two blue dresses (one denim, one cotton?) every season. I love the fact that some of those dresses are brand staples and are only tweaked a little bit each time. I particularly loved this one from their latest collection. It seems perfect as a work dress or a day dress. It is made in Italy.
Dress 4: I love the silhouette of this Theory Belted Shirt dress. It seems more forgiving than the A.P.C one which has a straighter cut. Theory, as a brand, has been a hit or a miss for me in the past. Some of their silk dresses are good. Some are very thin. This dress is marked as ‘Imported’. I know that most Theory clothes are Made in China or Vietnam. So, I am not entirely sure. Project Just says the holding company is not as bad as some of the other companies. Check out the Size and Business Model Tab. I did not know that Theory and Uniqlo were owned by the same company! Interestingly, of the 4 dresses here, this is the most expensive one. But, there will always be a sale very soon with Theory. Saks already has this dress at a better price.
I love that both these options are collarless.
Story Time: A few years ago, when Alber Elbaz was still working at Lanvin, Acne Jeans collaborated with him to create a denim collection. When you bring the detailing of couture to a fabric like denim, magic ensues. At that time in my life, I couldn’t afford any of those clothes in at full price. This was my absolute favorite dress from that collection. It is still on my small list of fashion items that got away. Who knows, some lady might end up selling it on Ebay or The Real Real and it will resurface again? Are you noticing that denim dresses are coming back again? This one stole my heart. But, it is definitely out of my price range. Also, I don’t think I would do it justice as I am only 5’2” on my best day.
Question: How do you feel about blue and it’s various shades? Is it a wardrobe staple or too boring for you? Do you prefer black or gray or some other color instead? As easy as Denim is, I have a love-hate relation with denim shopping. I don’t own more than 2 to 3 pairs of denim at any given time. How about you?