I remember, back in the late 90s, when the back page of Vogue would always be the same series of questions asked to a famous/fashion person. I love this sort of stuff, as we know. (Does everyone always imagine their own answers to these sort of interview questions, or am I just really, misguidedly self-important?)
One of the questions was always ‘what would you add to an outfit of black trousers and black T-shirt to make the look your own?’. I remember at the time (OK, I *may* have written down this fictional interview in my diary), my answer was (guys – remember, it was 1998!): ‘studded leather wristbands, my Miu Miu cargo bag* and a lot of eyeliner’. Nice.
When not-asked the last clothing purchase I made, I also proudly replied: ‘cherry-red Capri pants from Gap’. You know, just like in that oh-so cool advert where they were swing-dancing. Sooo, we might not want to give these answers too much weight.
Weirdly, I was also answering them as if it were the future and I was now an actual famous/fashion person, too (who, um, bought red trousers from Gap and wore studded leather wristbands?) – during the ‘interview’ I shoehorned in some blithe references to my house in Notting Hill, my lovely children and rock star husband (who, you know, had the same name as my schooldays boyfriend).
Anyway, for some reason I thought of this and it got me thinking: what would I answer now?
Although studded leather wristbands were a bit weird/tacky/90s – I had two of them, which I would wear on both wrists, most of the time – they were the obvious answer. I had a strong look.
Now it’s not so clear-cut. I think my look would depend more on the proportions of the trousers (skinny) and the T-shirt (not too tight), but that’s not the point.
So, what makes me look like myself?
I would say: a flat shoe, my Sofia clutch bag, a strong lip, a massive watch, messy hair (with fringe, obv), possibly a scarf.
I feel like this will never change – but then again, I felt the same way about my punk-bracelets and Barry M eye kohl. Then again, I’m still doing fake-interviews with myself, so maybe I haven’t actually changed that much.
Incidentally, another question was: ‘what’s your most overused phrase?’ My charmingly quaint, 1998 answer: ‘hold on, I’ve got someone on the other line’ (call waiting was quite new and exciting). Sounds glamorous if you don’t know that I’m on the phone to my friend Rachael, and on the other line is aforementioned Schooldays Boyfriend ringing to say he will be standing me up tonight because he has a very important band practice, before I resume my call with Rachael in tears. Such is the life of a famous/fashion Vogue interviewee.
* As I was discussing on Twitter recently – remember how in the late 90s, Miu Miu was genuinely a fun and affordable diffusion brand? That bag was less than £200; I loved it and I still have it. Miu Miu is so spendy now, it’s ridiculous. I often see things I like from there and think ‘yay, Miu Miu’ then realise it’s three times more than I could afford for the most special treat.