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Underpinnings

All Hail the Winter Bush

Helmut_Newton

With most of the country caught in the bony blue grips of a deep freeze, I think it’s high time we address the state of our nethers, and whether weather has any bearing at all on said nethers.

I would argue that a slightly more “au natural” state is perfectly ok during a time of year when our lady parts are more likely to be swathed in wool blankets by a fire than trying to sneak a peek at the sun in a daring paddle board yoga starfish pose.

Also, the New York Times posits that after so many years of chasing a “barren landscape” brought about by the introduction of the bikini in the 60′s and, frankly, porn more recently – “there’s something refreshingly retro, delightfully expressive and confidently grown-up in getting back to nature.”

Bravo, I say. Critical here, is to tiptoe the fine line between slothful disregard and a considered aesthetic choice. It makes all the difference in the world. Why not take it easy on ourselves for a few months? Space out those trips to the aesthetician and let those razors rest. Of course, a wee bit of pruning here and there might be in order, but why not say why not? to what the NYTimes brilliantly coins “the bombshell bush?”

Photo credit: Helmut Newton

If Miranda Kerr can't make it look good, what hope is there for the rest of us?
If Miranda Kerr can't make it look good, what hope is there for the rest of us?

High-Waisted Swim Suits: Yay or Nay?

The fact that I’m only getting around to writing about this trend in August means I have spent all summer trying with all my might to understand, embrace and enjoy this look.

While there is much to like about this look in theory, I have yet to see anyone actually look good in a high-waisted suit and it’s confounding to me.

On the plus side:

1. I like the idea of a retro glammy swim suit.

2. I like the idea of a little coverage for girls who may want a two-piece but have a little extra tummy love.

3. I like the idea that these bottoms won’t go flying off when you dive off the dock.

4. I like the fact that you don’t have to wax to within an inch of your life in this.

5. I like the fact that these suits pretty much declare to all the boys: I don’t care what you think.

6. I like the idea of being able to share swimsuits with my grandma.

On the minus side:

1. Ke$ha, Taylor Swift, Florence Welch, and Katy Perry all look kind of eeesh in their high-waisted suits and, with the exception of Ke$ha, they all have quite nice healthy figures.

2. Dita Von Teese could probably pull off a high-waisted suit, but to my knowledge she eschews water and, in fact, does not go outside when it’s daylight.

3. If you wouldn’t wear underwear this big, why would you wear bikini bottoms this big?

4. It’s not so much that the waist looks high, but the crotch looks low. Is low crotch ever a good look when you’re frolicking in the surf?

5. From behind, these suits make the bum look like a vast and endless savanna of lycra.

6. Belly button suffocation.

7. Oh ya, and low crotch. Again. Bad.

That’s 5 to 7, with high-waisted being the clear loser.

Not a fan.

 

Flights of Fancy: Dolce and Gabbana Town Mercato Dress

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I just made up the name “town mercato dress” because that’s where I’d wear the little number on the far right. (Yoohooo! Did you catch that Domenico and Stefano? Perhaps you’d like to hire SB to work in your emporium of sexiness? Your ufficio of femininity? Your bureau of bustiers? Hmmm? Sì? Sì?)

Normally, I’m not one to advocate bra-top dressing, but the retro cut of the top and the high waist of the skirt is darling. Add the vegetal print, and I’m frothy for a big straw bag, some Euros tucked into that bra top and a windy dirt road to the town market in Capri.

Perhaps I’d meet a dark Italian smoking a cigarillo on a fence on my way back and he’d carry my heavy burden and I’d kindly repay him with un pranzo lungo.

What? It could happen.

To see the 2012 collection in motion, look here.

And for more gorgeous pictures of Dolce and Gabbana’s 2012 Ad campaign by Giampaolo Sgura peep over here.

Bellissimo!

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The Evolution of the Bra

Robin Givhan’s piece about the bra’s big moments in history in Newsweek’s Mad Men issue is a good read. It’s not entirely surprising that such a slip of a thing, an unmentionable, an undergarment would become such a politicizing and polarizing symbol.

It may be hidden, but it’s the article of clothing a woman feels the most – around her ribs, over her shoulders, across her beating heart – where big breaths and loud roars originate, where selfhood and passions reside.

It sort of gives new meaning to the lyrics: when you love somebody, set them free.

Not that I’m advocating any sort of bralessness lawlessness. If the girls need support, you give it.

But if they don’t, well, you know what to do.