Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Paris Vogue Suggests: An Undersized Jeans Jacket

Last week I had the pleasure of a long train ride with the Paris Vogue August issue for company. The lead editorial was "80 Essential Looks," which brought together Inez Van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin as photogs, the house team of stylists, a small crew of models and what must have been a sheer nightmare of call-ins to present 80 individual head-to-toe looks by various top designers, starting with Marc Jacobs and wrapping with Kenzo.

As a showcase, the concept was fantastic. If only American and British magazines had the same kind of freedom.

Despite affirmatively liking/considering wearable only about 5% of the clothes on view, there was inspiration at every turn of the page. Over the next few days, I'd like to consider a number of the looks and describe how a secondhand/vintage lover might re-interpret them our way. One of the greatest risks of our mode of shopping is being locked into the past. With the cutting-edge styling that Paris Vogue offers, even the most unlikely older pieces can find fresh interpretation.

Let's start out easy. The photo at right (garments by Calvin Klein) caught my eye for the obvious reasons, but then I looked hard at what the clothed model was wearing. A teeny jeans jacket. Hmmmm . . .

As luck would have it, right around the corner at my local Oxfam was a boy's large Gap denim, for a mere £7 (about $10). Not as superteeny as the model's, but as a quick autumn cover-up, just perfect, especially when the rest of the world will be wearing slouchy boyf jackets. And nearly a no-brainer, because there are few easier finds in a big old Salvation Army than a jeans jacket that's essentially too small--the trickiest thing is making sure you have good mobility through the shoulders, and the sleeves aren't too tight.

Even an older and/or larger woman can wear this look wonderfully (think of it more as a bolero than a jacket). Dress up bare arms with gorgeous bangles, and you're done.


  1. I have just wore my Gap jacket the other day for a very similar look ( w/ Petit Bateau Mille Raies t and black skinny jeans).