WAISTED For Laura Brown, dressing this season is a cinch.
Saint Laurent by Hedi Slimane One of my favourite photographs is a portrait of artist Georgia O’Keeffe in 1960. She is outside, under the blue sky of New Mexico, hanging her painting Pelvis Series, Red With Yellow on an easel. Her hair pulled back in a bun, she’s wearing a long-sleeved black tunic cinched with a Héctor Aguilar belt made of black leather, embellished with bold silver crosses. Now that is a belt. The sort of belt that would
give a girl a fit of delight in a vintage store
or be found by happenstance in a relative’s closet. A belt that often ends up on Pinterest, captioned with something like “OMG, I love/ live/die for that belt.” That’s what belts do: They say something. There’s something about a belt that instantly confers character. If you’re a picture, the belt is your frame. And while it’s looped around your waist, not a piece of jewellery hanging from your neck, a belt is immediately personal. I’ve always been challenged at belt wearing. I’ve been told to belt up more than once by my mother, but in Australia, that just means “stop talking.” I can barely get it together too put on a pair of jeans, let alone thread something throughrough the loops around my waist. It’s just such a look k – and, thankfully, my trousers have been able to stay up unaided. So far. All those belted ladies, they always seem a step ahead of me. Literally, more pulled together.r. If you’re on a retro sweep, think of Loulou de la Falaise in a swishy metallic number with a gypsy skirt, out on the e town with Yves Saint Laurent; Catherine Deneuve containing ntaining her kinkiness in Belle de Jour; Bianca Jagger cinching ng in her cherry sequins on the way to Studio 54. A waspy waist,aist, a swing in the hips, confidence to spare. But this season, I’m feeling it. First, there were so many looks on the runways that emphasised the waist. It might have something to do with groovy young J.W. Anderson’s work for his own label and for Loewe. He’s got the colour thing down, J.W. He beats to the ’80s but his pieces are not pastiche. For Loewe, a blouson leather jacket and houndstooth trousers were jazzed up with a bright yellow low-slung belt made of interlocked triangles. For his namesake Be lt, La n v i collection, it was green, white, and tight. At Balmain, the shape was strict and Helmut Newtonesque, strong- shouldered glamazons fastened with a bold slash of blue satin. I’d like to channel that Balmain lady on a Saturday night. For the more relaxed girl – with the wind in her hair and flirtation in every step – there are Chloé’s skinny leather belts, tied with a casualness that takes forever to achieve, and Gucci’s bookish suede pieces, worn over nubby coats (For this look, add glasses. Who cares if you need them?). Then, of course, there’s Lanvin. Oh, to be that Lanvin lady – lounging in a Moroccan garden garden, bohemian dress flowing, tasselled b belt dangling nonchalantly from the hip. ThereT are cushions thrown everywhere, I’m nib nibbling apricots, young men tend to my every wish. And it’s hot … so … hot. Sorry, where was I? Oh, back in New York,Yor at my desk, the loops of my jeans empty and alone. But that’s the irrational joy of fashion, right? It makes you want to beb someone else. So for once in my life, I’m going to belt up. My mother will be so happy.