Yesterday, some time between skinny jeans and Tunisian t-shirts at Berenice and a bright pink jacket from Des Petits Hauts, I fell in love with a dress. It was midnight blue, straight cut, above the knees with an integrated cape. Fashion Carrousel immediately dubbed it the Batman dress, comparing it to a mixture of Jackie O (good) and our paternal grandmother (bad). I thought it was the perfect balance of Jil Sander clean minimalism and Phoebe Philo Celine fashion intellectualisation.
I had started styling it, with a large black studded belt, the second I took it off the rack. Yet when it came to buying it (once in the brand’s own store and once at its corner in Galleries Lafayette), I just couldn’t bring myself to doing it. It wasn’t the price of the dress, nor the fact I couldn’t see myself getting enough wears out of it in my current life.
The dress was about my future and about what I could see myself as in 20 years. I could see myself wearing it in a boardroom and I imagined the dress commanding authority and self-confidence. I freaked out at the till point, twice, because I was too scared it would stay in my closet, month after month, year after year, not being worn, staring back at me accusingly every time I opened my wardrobe, reminding me I just wasn’t getting there. In the space of on afternoon, this cape dress went from beautiful item of clothing to life ambition challenge and buying it became part of a wider self-questioning over what I want my life to be.