Mar 5th, 2017, 08:29 AM


By Chelsea Sanford
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Diana Vreeland reviewing the latest Paris Fashion Week from above…

There once was a woman who believed fashion was the predecessor to predicting revolution, an icon who believed in accentuating models unusual features and making them look beautiful - this was Diana Vreeland.

Her fast-moving life took her from Belle Epoque Paris to Studio 54, whose friendships ranged from Coco Chanel and Wallis Simpson, from Andy Warhol to Jack Nicholson. Her imagination and keen eye boosted the pages of Harper's Bazaar (1936-1962) and Vogue (1962-1971) into the future and revolutionized the Metropolitan Museum's Costume Institute (1971-1989).

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If Mrs. Vreeland was here today, and fittingly for Paris Fashion Week, I believe these would be some of her comments on the current Winter/Fall collections of 2017:

Anthony Vaccarello, creative director of Yves Saint Laurent said he was inspired by one particular dress, for his 2017 Winter/Fall collection, an haute couture number with huge sleeves that dates from the early ’80s. Vreeland would have swooned over that! The show was predominantly made up of tiny, sculpted, curvaceous after-dark looks, glistening in black velvet and leather, the thousands of rhinestones creating a luminous sparkle on the dim runway.

One is either a lover or hater of Yves Saint Laurent, and in this case, I believe Vreeland would have said,  “A little bad taste is like a nice splash of paprika. We all need a splash of bad taste - it’s hearty, it’s healthy, it’s physical. I think we could use more of it. No taste is what I’m against.”

Yves Saint Laurent Fall 2017 Fashion Show | Image: Vogue 

If she had attended the Walter Van Bierendock 2017 Winter/Fall collection, she may have been slightly disturbed, but would have definitely been inspired to put the designer's clothes in Harpers Bazaar or Vogue. Van Bierendock’s pieces resembled elements of apocalyptic themes – the use of masks and oversized gloves attached to blazers seemed to reference our current unstable world. Vreeland's comment on the show would resemble a quote of hers: “Fashion is part of the daily air and it changes all the time, with all the events. You can even see the approaching of a revolution in clothes. You can see and feel everything in clothes.”

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Of course she would have had much to say about the many designers and their 21st century collections, as she was known to never be short on words. Vreeland would have adored the way fashion has evolved since her death in 1989.

She would have probably loved Jeremy Scott’s unconventional designs from his namesake label and Gucci’s constant drive to showcase luxury. However, she did say “too much of good taste can be boring.” She would not have approved of the lack of experimentation and the need to ‘play it safe’ mentality as well as the shoes in Valentino as she once said, “Unshined shoes are the end of civilization!”

Jeremy Scott SS 2017 | Image:
Gucci 2017 | Image:
Valentino SS 2017 | Image:

The iconic Vreeland was a once in a lifetime type of women, whose class, style and taste has left its mark on the world. I like to think she’s advising the angels in heaven on how to dress, telling them: “Everyone who has style share one thing – originality.”

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