When I recently received the July issue of Vogue which had an ‘Ageless Style’ theme, I opened it with enthusiasm, as last July’s version was unusually pertinent to my business. Again I was glad for the initiative, but rather less impressed with the styling.
How often these days do we see the wonderful iconic photography that so inspired me when I was in my teens and early 20s, where the shot was so beautiful that even if the clothing did not appeal, you wanted to step into the image? I rarely see a photo shoot and think “I wish I could look like that”?
I realise it is not the job of Vogue, or doubtless their intention, to sell clothes. But surely it should encourage some people, other than those in the business and serious fashion fans, to want to wear the looks.
I doubt most shoppers refer to the rather whimsical styling in the big glossies for fashion inspiration. They may be more influenced by pics of celebrities in magazines such as Heat.
The bland pages of still life photography offered in most of the magazines are of course useful. And for those who are probably not going to look at Heat (other than maybe while at the hairdressers), there are plenty of other magazines which do a fair job of showing us what is on trend, but not in an aspirational, truly iconic manner.
Could it be the case that many middle-aged women, either frightened or bored by the way fashion is portrayed, just give up and stick with what they are used to, rather than feeling inspired to go out and try some of the new looks? I wonder.
Lalage Beaumont designs her own brand, which she wholesales and retails from her London boutique of the same name