I have always thought I shopped like a man: diving in for one day at the beginning of the season, hitting two destinations and leaving with all I need for the next six months. Which tends to be exactly what I left with six months previously, and six prior to that. I’m a creature of habit. I’ve had two hairstyles in my life, the crop and the bob, and repeated them in succession since I was 6 years old. It’s the same with my clothes.
Three seasons ago I bought a white Céline shirt – oversized, mannish, perfect. It was the full stop to my search. Then Céline repeated it in the following resort collection, which the brand refers to as Spring. Identical but crisper than my original one was by now, the new shirt had seen less of other people’s red wine, less of my dry cleaner, less of life. I had to have it. I now have five, all the same to you but individual characters to me. There’s a Céline biker jacket I’ve tried on 15 times since June 2010 – I will have it, but not yet. I don’t need to panic-buy, because once again, it is a repeat. And it’s not just Céline. At Balenciaga there are the punk shoe, DB blazer and skinny pant. Acne has the Rita suede jacket and shift dresses. Season after season, there they are on the rails.
This isn’t designers running out of ideas; this is loyalty. Fashion has woke up to the fact that we don’t change every six months – or years, for that matter – so why should it? It knows we want to live a little in our clothes without fear of destroying them, never to be bought again. We want new, we want perfection, but who is to say we want different?
By Kay Barron, fashion features editor of Harper’s Bazaar UK.
Back and here to stay: the biker jacket and white shirt by Céline
photography zoë ghertner styling britt marie k