With the start of a new season, Editor-in-Chief Farrah Storr talks through the integral role that fashion plays in all our lives
One of my favourite times of the year is the spring/summer and autumn/winter fashion shows. Over the past 25 years I have watched them from various places throughout my life. As a fashion-mad teenager growing up in the 199Os I would read about them in glossy magazines, recreating Marc Jacobs’ ‘grunge’ aesthetic with canny charity-shop finds. As a young editor starting out in the mid-2OOOs, I spied them from the back row, balanced on tiptoes, neck craned; the clear glimpse of a sleeve enough to make me giddy with excitement – and every outfit meticulously recreated with a high-street approximation of the real thing. Now I am lucky enough to watch them from the glamour of the front row, where every dress or coat is within arm’s reach; every model so close you can see the goosebumps on the back of their neck. And if I save up enough (and I mean really save) I can finally buy a piece of the catwalk for myself. Yet no matter where I have watched these shows, or how my own wardrobe has been inspired by them, the same thing has always struck me. It’s not that they defy imagination (although there is that); neither is it that they offer a portal into our sartorial future selves. It is that these clothes start life as seeds in the mind of a designer, which then sprout into the incredible creations we see on the catwalk, which, after a short while, trickle down into wardrobes across the world. It is there, in our own homes and on our own backs, that the real magic happens. Whether we care to admit it or not, fashion plays an integral role in all of our lives. Why? Because the clothes we wear help to shape the memories we make. I can still recall the pair of shoes I wore when I fell in love for the first time (Ann Demeulemeester-inspired leather mules with skinny laces that wrapped around my legs like bindweed). And I look back fondly on the moleskin trousers and toffee Max Mara-esque jumper I wore for my first job interview. I know what I packed in my suitcase when I left home (lots of androgynous T-shirts as an ode to Helmut Lang) and the Prada-inspired dress that I wore when I first met my husband. You see, clothing is a second skin through which we experience the world; it is also a prism through which the world experiences us. With that in mind, we present our SS2O round-up over on page 41: it’s 15 pages of what we think will play a leading role in your life over the coming months. Some are bold, some are quiet. Some will jump out and speak to you immediately, like an old friend at a party, while others you will shy away from. But all of them will help you create memories that will last a lifetime.
“THE CLOTHES THAT WE WEAR HELP TO SHAPE THE MEMORIES WE MAKE”