from grunge to trashy; or, my auckland acquisitions
standard day-at-home uniform of grey AA t-shirt, calvin klein jeans, random metal belt and boots becomes ..
lunchtastic! faux fur jacket purchased last weekend at the terrific fast and loose vintage in karangahape rd, auckland .. with tom binns flying skull necklace and obligatory shades (from karen walker) ..
.. to the out-and-out ridic, avec crown lynn swan bought off trademe. which i did not take to lunch, just in case you are wondering.
the rockstar wondered aloud if i might be addicted to shopping.i told him i don’t think it’s that exactly. actual shopping? that endless trawl spending endless money for things you won’t wear, just for the sake of acquiring something new? a “leisure activity” as i think it’s considered now in britain? no. okay, i am not disciplined like the rockstar is, identifying something he needs, searching out a piece that is exactly what he wants, getting things tailored to fit perfectly, etc. i already have more clothes and shoes than i could possibly wear out in a lifetime, so one could argue i do not have a need to buy anything and that any item i purchase is a pure want, a compulsion even. so from that point of view, i suppose, i can see how he might say that.
but. here was my process on this particular day in auckland. i had been looking for the perfect faux fur jacket for a while, because i think it’ll be a useful alternative to heavy coats and parkas during this wellington winter that’s creeping up awful fast. as always, i prefer to buy second-hand if it’s possible. vintage clothes that have made it this far are likely to have been made in new zealand, rather than being sweatshopped somewhere; they will be well-made, having survived at least one owner; and they will not be instantly identifiable as something you purchased on lambton quay (which a waspish shop assistant described to me the other day as looking “more and more like an australian strip mall”, lol). one big disadvantage of shopping the high street in NZ: it has relatively few outlets, so everyone goes to the same places and everyone knows where you got a particular piece and how much you paid for it.
anyway, the vintage stores here in welli-lala had yielded pretty much nothing so far. so when i saw this beauty smiling at me from the racks at fast and loose (and let’s face it; something is always smiling from the racks of fast and loose) i thought, hello lover! it wasn’t so much a random grab as the end of a search for the exactly perfect thing. and as we know, vintage shopping is like that. send out your wish to the vintage fairies and, with enough patience and searching, your wish will come to you.
(as for the crown lynn swan, well. it’s an icon of new zealand design. i know they’re a little played by now, but i still love this kind of kitsch ceramic stuff. i have a big collection of those cabbage leaf plates in storage, in case you doubt me. what?)
i don’t think i am addicted to shopping, then, but i might be addicted to fashion. my eye is constantly searching out the new, the inspiring. it tires quickly and its desire for inspiration needs to be fed. this is why i love thrift/op/charity shopping .. you never know what you’ll find. go with an idea in your head, as i did, or a totally open mind, and have fun. because, after all, fashion is deadly serious but it should also be fun.
so let’s term it that way. i might be addicted to fashion. but in the end, all that is is an addiction to inspiration, to beauty, to fun. and in any case, addiction implies something that is damaging. i think in my case it’s entirely healthy. it makes me curious, creative and appreciative of the fabulousness of simple things, like the perfect colour of faux fur or the elegant sweep of a swan’s neck. and that, dear reader, is a good thing. well, i think it is, anyway.