The gingham shirt: Last season is so next season this season

 

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Indy Lifestyle Online

Right now, I'm obsessed with a gingham shirt. It's blue. It sort of looks like the female version of my primary school's uniform, including the ruffle running down the whole front. It's something I feel I can't make it through summer without sporting.

The issue? It's from last winter's Prada collection. It's the piece that got away, or at least the piece I didn't realise I needed quite so desperately until it disappeared from shops.

I wonder how much of a general issue that is for fashion's followers – the stuff you didn't quite realise you wanted until you couldn't get it? Of course, nothing ever goes away completely. Besides fashion's endless revivalism, there are the likes of theoutnet.com and Bicester Village, offering last season this season, for a song.

That idea – wearing garments deemed "last season" – was once perceived as the ultimate fashion sin, the presumption being that everyone with even a modicum of stylistic nous incinerated their entire wardrobe come the biannual sartorial switch-around rather than be subjected to such indignity.

But a taste for remembrance of fashion's past has antecedents. I'm reminded of the ladies of Edith Wharton's 19th-century New York, who kept their Charles Frederick Worth ball gowns in mothballs for a couple of seasons to avoid being at the cutting-edge of fashion and hence seen as flashy or parvenu.

Considering our current fashion environment, populated with hyped-up street-style fashion plates decked out in looks straight off the catwalk, maybe old clothes actually feel new.

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