Friday, December 1, 2017

Going into 2018 With Style

I hesitate posting this as several of my nearest and dearest will be receiving them. On the other hand this is too good to keep secret.

I usually think a calendar is such a lame choice for a gift. I avoid "calendar kiosks" at the mall lest even I get sucked into buying "365 Days of Kute Kittens" for myself. My own calendar, for dentist appointments and such, is strictly utilitarian and sits in the kitchen drawer. Even so I may be an old fuddy-duddy. Everyone under fifty seems to use their phone function.

Nevertheless I came across this in a museum gift shop and scooped up a bundle. It's fashion! It's history! It's pretty! It's even a calendar! It's "Daily Dress 2018— 365 Days of Fashion and Style", published through the Costume Institute of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. Those are street creds if ever. It's oversize, measuring 12" wide x 24" long when opened, so necessitates a generous hanging space. Mine is inside the closet door. Every day features a different fashion artifact from the museum's collection— apparel or accessory— with a brief description of what, who and when.  The pages are color-coordinated, so every month has a tonal theme. The items are photographed but placed on sketches of figures. Retail is $14.99.

What a feast of fashion history! As per the Met's blurb:

Each day features a stunning piece from every corner of the world throughout the centuries. From sumptuous seventeenth-century French gowns to stylish dresses designed by Dior or Chanel, from elaborate footwear to dazzling jewelry, this 2018 calendar highlights hundreds of years' worth of glamour, beauty and style.

Emphasis is on fashion from the late 19th century until today, so it's not a dry history lesson in winkles and panniers. What's interesting is how contemporary— and desirable— many of the pieces look. This may be a reflection on how eclectic our fashion sense has become. On the other hand, it does give new meaning to "timeless fashion".

The witty Geoffrey Beene

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