Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Miss Selfridge is my friend

Miss Selfridge is my friend

Actually, Miss Selfridge is a U.K. shop, but if she were a real person, she’d be my best friend. After a day of London high street shopping, teasing myself at Harvey Nichols, and coming up empty-handed at TopShop, I stepped into the Miss Selfridge shop. I thought I was in heaven. Every which way I turned I spotted something to try on. It was perfect, it was…me.

A flapper’s string of light yellow beads I’d imagined, and was hoping I’d find somewhere? Found, at four quid. I was so inspired by the lovely ruffly antique dresses on display at the Victoria & Albert museum, and what did I find at Miss Selfridge? A sweet rumpled dust-coloured blazer with flared three-quarter sleeves and darling ruffles on the back. Loved it, bought it for 40 pounds. Also bought: mint green open-toe Sabrina heels in a faux snakeskin, on sale for 12 pounds. They were a tad trampled, but I really didn’t care.

Let’s discuss Harvey Nichols. Harvey Nichols is amazing. If Harvey Nichols was a man, he’d be my boyfriend. Or perhaps, more financially accurately, my sugar daddy. Chloe, Lanvin, Balenciaga, even Smythe jackets from Toronto, they’ve got it going on. Though I did notice a lack of certain items on display – they wait-listed ones, like the Balenciaga Lariat bag, which I did see displayed prominently in Paris.

Which brings me to Parisian women.

Niall the fiancé and I took the Eurostar to Paris after visiting London for five days.

Parisian women, as far as I can tell, don’t seem to buy into any of this wait-list nonsense. The women are stylish to be sure, but it’s still this old-world neatly done-up pantyhose-and-conservative-colours look. Or else they look like students. But they never look like fashion victims. One thing I’ve noted, when a woman in Paris looks chic, she really looks chic and not in an of-the-moment tight-jeans-stuffed-into-boots way. You notice her, and the clothing she was wearing stays on your mind, like a woman on the Metro wearing simple white t-shirt tucked into a pair of well-cut camouflage cargo pants, topped with a jean jacket. Nothing new here, but she looked so fresh wearing it. For some reason I imagined her as a young, clever doctor off to do a shift at the hospital.

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