Sunday, February 17, 2008

Art of Darkness

     I saw this ad for an online design competition being sponsored by American Express and run by Glam over at Connie's and decided to just snoop a little. Lord was I in for a shock. The majority of these are ugly as sin. Not just because some of these folks clearly aren't fashion illustrators—that's an understandable result of a competition open to anyone and everyone—my problem is that these folks are the semifinalists. I thought about just leaving it at that, but I seriously have to go through these one by one and rip them apart.

     Monique decided to take inspiration from a "candle from the Bahamas". Well, this explains why this is a big, hot mess. I think this girl just decided to throw on as many ideas that she associated with "pretty dress" onto one sketch. Plunging neck? Check. Asymmetrical back strap? Check. Low-cut back? Check. Contrast color star? Check. Oh please. Maybe instead of taking "time out of her classes", she needs to focus a bit more.

     "Elaborate"? "Eco-minded"? What is that little thing running down the middle? A bib? Well, you might be throwing up all over yourself if you're wearing this, so I can understand the need. And I bet a ton of people voted for her just because she claimed that this was "made from bamboo". Pssh. I'm from the Bay, girl. I know some real sustainable clothing lines and none of them look this bad/boring/bad. And can we talk about those ridiculous feet? I understand that it's hard to draw shoes, but anybody with a real eye can see that Alexandra still clearly endorses the idea of bound feet, which I don't think is very fashion forward.

      I appreciated Anne's attempt to distract me from her boring, boring dress with her model's legs. I know how far a good pair of stems will get you, so I understand what she's trying to do here. Unfortunately this does not change the fact that her dress is basically something that you can buy from any of the following establishments: Forever 21, Target, H&M, Charlotte Russe, Wet Seal, et cetera. A draped neckline and high hem do not a hot dress make.

     Too easy. Next.

     Not bad, Carrie, not bad at all. Your appeal to my Kate Moss-centric sensibilities definitely earns you a point or two. Your styling, however, leaves something to be desired. Short skirt? Flapper inspired look? Please, don't hurt yourself stretching. I know it must be difficult. The layered skirt, ruched bodice, and asymmetrical strap/collar create some visual interest. I won't be too hard on Carrie because, unlike so many others, she actually tried.

     Let's get a few things straight. This is about clothes. I don't know how much time you spent drawing your model's face, but more importantly—and you really ought to be taking notes here, Christina—I really don't care. Droopy cowlneck double-knit dress? Gross. And what the fuck is that on the dress anyway? Did you just make a screenprint out of a piece of your grandmother's couch? And you added leggings. It's like serving a shitcake with piss frosting and a big bowl of frozen vomit on the side.

     Now Jessica, I know this is going to be hard for you to understand, but I'd like you to follow along with me very, very carefully. I'll say this slowly to make sure that you get everything. There. Is. A. World. Outside. Palo. Alto. I understand that it's hard to envision a place where everyone doesn't have legs that go on for days, where people don't feel the need to tie their hair into a pony-tail and throw it over their shoulder every day, where the median income for a family is actually less than $117, 574 (I know, take a minute with that one, Jessica). But just because you don't know about this world outside doesn't mean it isn't there. So please, don't pillage some Asian culture with your "Kimoyes" dress in an attempt to make a dress that everyone's seen in a million iterations already.

     I never thought we'd get here without me becoming physically ill, but Mary's little number might do the trick. I have been increasing my caloric intake, so this just might be the solution. (I kid, please no angry e-mails. I already eat like a cow. Now get off my nuts.) I think you should try patenting your "triple keyhole neckline", Mary, because I really don't think anyone else has (or ever will) try out that little trick. Did I also mention how deliriously high Mary's model is? And how closely she resembles one of my elementary school teachers? No. Well, she is and she does. Also, the length of her arms may be an indication of knuckle-walking, because Lord knows that my arms don't reach down past my knees.

     Folks, if we work together, we can stop bad fashion from happening to good people. Or, in this case, bad people happening to good fashion. Because then all you're left with is ugly people in ugly dresses making everyone else feeling uncomfortable.

     Also, sorry for the bad Conrad pun. Just couldn't help myself.

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1 comment:

connie said...

ahahhahaahhhaaaa marcus thank you so much for writing that

i honestly have no idea what the criteria glam had for picking them (and all i'm hoping is that when they finalists actually have to MAKE the dresses, you'll be around to rip that one apart also)