Tuesday, September 29, 2009

She's back - the return of the power bitch!

I will never really understand why style forecasters claim at the beginning of each and every season that the 80s are "back"... I mean, did they ever go away? Anyone who hasn't been under a rock for the latter part of this decade must have noticed how fashion as well as music has been heavily influenced by 80s design and bands, respectively, for a good couple of years. Summer 2005? The Bravery, lacy layered "Who's That Girl?" mini skirts, crazy makeup, Motherf***er parties in downtown NYC. Somehow it feels like fashion never fully recovered from that intense experience: even though the 80s have not really been in style to any significant extent since then, they did by no means disappear completely. Case in point: following the mid-decade 80s craze, you never knew when some random balloon skirt, neon fishnet glove or harem pant would sneak its way onto the racks of your favorite boutique or the pages of an "edgy" fashion editorial!

However, one 80s look that never stroke again with full force was the power bitch trend. Thank goodness! It's bad enough having to be bitched around the office by some power-tripping, menopausal, micro-managing lady suffering from BlackBerry addiction as well as part OCD, part ADD... now imagine the same lady, decked out in poufy hair, a double breasted Thierry Mugler suit with shoulder pads the size of the Sydney Opera House.... and white commuter sneakers. Welcome to fall 2009!

It started quite innocently with the menswear trend - then all of a sudden, we were flooded with shows and editorials where models were styled as slick businesswomen in oversized double-breasted CEO blazers, marked shoulders à la Alexis Carrington, and with that dollar hungry gaze in their eyes... Below: Katie Fogarty and Kendra Spears channeling Wall Street with a touch of Robert Palmer's "Addicted to Love" in Bazaar.










Meanwhile, uptown as well as downtown boutiques are currently showcasing designs that would fit right into the wardrobe of any leading lady on Dynasty, Working Girl... and even Dallas. Below: day and evening power bitch looks at Dolce & Gabbana, double breasted coat and big hair at Prada (note that the mannequin sports the same frizzy hair as the models of the brand's fall campaign!), bedazzled evening gown at Angela's Vintage (11th & 2nd).









I do realize how this style can be glamorous as well as elegant, if worn by the right person on the right occasion. But even so, it does absolutely nothing for me! In addition to being overwhelming and a little too much in general, these designs are typically very mature looking and will add 5-10 years to almost anyone's age. The aging effect is reinforced further by the heavy makeup that is pretty much a necessity for pulling off the style in a believable way. I have no interest at all in trying this look, and I do not particularly enjoy seeing it worn by other women either.

Befittingly enough, as this has been on my mind a lot lately, I spent my Wednesday doing some work on the sequel to Oliver Stone's 1987 movie "Wall Street". Curious to see whether Gordon Gekko would be sporting the same sleazy hairdo and custom made shirts (by New Jersey shirtmaker Mel Gambert) as he did back in '87, I was a little disappointed to find out that Michael Douglas was not working the same scenes as me today. Instead, I got to share the screen with '09 power bitch Carey Mulligan, looking like she was ready to slap us all in our faces with her briefcase - too bad I signed paperwork preventing me from discussing her wardrobe (among many other things) on a public forum such as Blogger...

One thing I will say, though, is that Ms Mulligan looked extremely impeccable and well put together - unlike this lady, whom I caught sight of during my walk home (pictured on the right)! During the six years I've lived here, I have never really spotted sneakers on working women - but this season they suddenly seem to be the commuter shoe à la mode. If I was not convinced before that the power bitch is on her way back, I certainly am now! However, that would not necessarily be the upscale, well-dressed leading lady at D&G and Prada... but rather her sloppy, mismatched little sister!

To wrap up, I have two great pieces of advice for all of you who are guilty of doing this: please stop channeling Melanie Griffith '88 and instead see below, ASAP! Yes, you heard me. You're welcome.

35 comments:

  1. So nice post ! I love the Chanel shoes !
    http://mimietnini.canalblog.com/

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  2. omg the chanel shoes!!!! ahhh!

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  3. I am still horrified by the 'walking' shoe choice of many women. Why! Why! Why! would you wear trainers when we now have a multitude of ballet flats, bejewelled slippers and the like. Even my wellies are Marc Jacobs! But most days I just walk in the damn heels - that is a power bitch, no? Pearl x

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  4. cool post. i like your thougts.

    the brand is so important - too important.

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  5. they're from Numéro Tokyo

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  6. great great post !!!
    haha excellent ***°°**°°°
    Totally agree with you*

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  7. ahah i am rather guilty of wearing trainers to school and then changing shoes... but only when its really frosty and my crappy pumps have no grip!!

    hell hath no fury like a power bitch... ;)

    sugar
    xoxo

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  8. ommmmgggg!
    the chanel shoes <3.

    xx

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  9. I think the 80's only "works" if you have the full package. The total, hair, make-up wardrobe, lingo. I lived it and it was fun. I think the hair spray industry desperately wants it to return! :O)

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  10. hahahaha
    great post as usual
    funny stuff
    the power bitch should never be "in"

    myglitteringcreation.blogspot.com

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  11. This is a great post! I like some aspects of 80s fashion, but a lot of it scares me. I'm not sure I could get away with most of it. Lol.
    That is SO freaking cool that you are working on the set of the Wall Street sequel. You're a part of movie history! :)

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  12. fab post! i totally agree! and yes the leggings are a lil scary :D

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  13. The last photo is really chic. :-)

    XoXo

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  14. Fantastic post, darling! Especially loving the editorial images!

    xoxox,
    CC

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  15. great post and i love the chanel flats!!!

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  16. you have a really great way of looking at things-although imagining my already horrifying boss decked to the nines in power suits and big hair totally terrified me!

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  17. I don't mean to be rude; but honestly, I think that trainers should simply be banned. Even when exercising. They're just so...unattractive. I wear Adidas when I work-out, and they're actually cute. But when I see women walking the streets dressed to the nines, then look down and see trainers...really, I just want to die on the spot. It's so incredibly unflattering. Ballerinas all the way ladies - they're cuter and are actually more simple to slip on (no tying required!).

    By the way, you lead such a glamorous life...I live vicariously through your on-set stories - they're simply divine!

    Almost forgot...added The Couture Cookie to my blog roll! :)

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  18. Another great post from you :) Those chanel shows are killer!

    xo,
    Crystal

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  19. I totally agree... that style will add years to your age. And I love those Chanel flats.

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  20. Awesome post, totally agree with what you have said.
    Love these photots!
    xx

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  21. Ah, the chanel flats! I have wanted a pair for several years now!

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  22. oh i so regret i didn't buy those shoes when i had the chance. the point was, i actually found some on sale years ago. sad....

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  23. Oh the ballerinas, I need those black and white Chanel ones, please!

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  24. CHANEL just takes my breath away... Ufff

    The most Chic fashion blog
    http://MaisonChaplin.blogspot.com

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  25. Every time I watch Working Girl I want to get back in the office, even though I hated it. Ah ha. I hate it though when women feel the need to be bitches in order to be perceived as strong!

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  26. HAHAHA! I love your sarcastic tone. Puffed shoulders are SO dangerous... They do not fit me at all. I can perfectly see that woman you are taliking about.
    I love the Chanel ballerinas. Cute.
    xoxo
    B* a la Moda

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  27. indeed,
    did the 80's ever go away?

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  28. Great post!!! I love the 80's. Also, those ballet flats are to die for. :)

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  29. Puffed shoulders? Ouch. Those and shoulder pads were the bane of the 80s. I love most 80s style, though. I'm especially loving all this big, colorful plaid that's in right now and the ballet flats. I want jazz shoes to come back, anyone remember those? And those plastic jelly shoes we all were so crazy about!

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  30. I saw someone wearing jazz Oxford shoes in the subway the other day, and I was like, what the...?! I'm sure they will be all over the place before we know it!

    Seems like everyone is going gaga over the Chanel flats. I adore them too, but actually prefer anything from the Coach fall collection if I have to choose. I just love how low cut those flats are - makes your legs look better. :)

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  31. I want some of those Chanel ballet flats. I'm debating between the black and gold pair...Hhmmm...So cute :D

    ♡,
    Jessica

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  32. Okay, I'm not a fan of the look but there's something about POWER BITCH that just sounds so... powerful don't you think?? I LOVE those Chanel flats!!
    You have go to jewelry shopping! Put on your best outfit and go. I find that when you look really good, everything else looks really good on you too.. but that might just mean your wallet will be empty when you return home. {I will not be held responsible, but please do post your finds!} Btw, I was in Chanel in Vegas this summer and their champagne and pearl line is GORGEOUS. O M G.

    xo

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  33. Find me those chanel flats now and gimmie! i just died.

    I work with a slew of "power bitches", considering I work for a bunch of attorneys. They have these outfits down along with the attitude. Its always a great 8 hr day everyday.

    look forward to readin your blog.

    xo ash

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  34. can't get enough. i like your writings very much and your thoughts

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  35. Man oh man. The sneakers HAVE GOT TO GO. Everytime I get lunch downtown where I work I spot this kind of woman. I'm all for comfort too, but come on.

    Oh and I love that Coach ad for flats. The tights are just adorable too!

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