All posts filed under: the fab 40s

The Fab 40s Are Princesses For A Day

Of fairytales and princes. Of happily ever afters (or not).   I remember my very first cinematic encounter with an official Disney princess.  Her name was Snow White and the year was 1980.  Throughout the music (who could forget that high pitched voice) and all that animation, one thing stuck in my head.  That I was certainly not going to lay around like a helpless damsel in distress, waiting for my prince to come and set me free.  That I’d rather don my own suit of armour, and rescue myself. I CAN SLAY MY OWN DRAGONS, YO As you’d probably surmise, I have no love for Snow White.  In face, her shrill vocal chords set me on edge and I’m instantly overcome by an animalistic urge to pummel.  Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty too are on my hit list of never-evers. God help me should the day come that I can no longer fight my own battles. Shudder.  Just shoot me and put me out of my misery when that moment arrives. Then came Ariel in …

The Fab 40s Create Pop Art

Drawn from popular culture. Celebrating mundane, everyday things.   Pop Art, that is, lauding commonplace objects and people, seeking to elevate these seemingly nondescript things to the level of fine art.  Personally, I wouldn’t put “pop” and “fine” within the same sentence should it pertain to the various categories of art but I’d be the last person to deny how strong an impact the pop art movement has had on fashion and style. A G R E E D ? Campbell’s Soup Cans. Disney’s mighty Mickey Mouse. MISS NORMA JEAN BAKER All these, be they hand-painted or screen-printed, are universally recognisable as juggernauts of the pop art culture.  And what’s particularly interesting to note is that whilst abstract expressionists favoured visually depicting their tormented souls upon canvas, pop artists searched for traces of that very same trauma in the commercial world of advertising, cartoons, and popular imagery at large. To be perfectly honest, I found this challenge quite, well, challenging (gah, Sam, I tossed and turned for quite a few nights, that I did). Aside …

The Fab 40s In Leather & Lace

Hard versus soft. Delicate versus not so delicate.   When I wrote this post, my initial thought was to develop something along the lines of contrasts.  You know, the juxtaposition between hard and soft.  Between leather and lace.  That beautiful attraction of opposing textures.  But the more I started reading the headline, the more I began seeing how this could also be interpreted as a gender issue. LET ME EXPLAIN Some time back, I shared my views on Belle’s Emma Watson’s inspiring speech.  My takeaway from her words was a new perspective on how men too are treated.  With bias.  And I’ve maintained that same thought process to this day.  How both genders need to rethink the way they view each other and perhaps, just perhaps, we might get along a little better. Think of it this way. Men are expected to be in possession of their emotions. AT ALL TIMES Generally brought up in the falsehood that showing empathy or vulnerability is a sign of weakness.  That “real” men are tough beasts who never …

The Fab 40s Take On Plaid | Sheela Writes

The Fab 40s Take On Plaid

Some say Plaid. Yet others say Tartan.   However you call, that criss-cross pattern of horizontal with vertical bands in various palettes (red being most popular, regardless of season) is instantly recognisable by one and all.  And I couldn’t be more delighted that The Fab 40s is showcasing its unique spin on plaid for this month’s edition. I shan’t be writing much today. Every now and again, a sabbatical is required.  To recharge.  Reboot.  Re-energise.  And that too is true where my brain is concerned because, as of Christmas Eve, it has been officially on hiatus.  I kid you not. So for today, please enjoy some truly pleasing eye candy from The Fab 40s and our guest, all in the name of plaid (or tartan, whichever floats your boat).  And let me know which is your fave out of the eight.  I know, it’s a toughie. Plaid Capelet & Bowie Top (thrifted) | Leather Culottes (Forever21) | Spiked Suede Booties (Make Me Chic) | Detective Trench Bag (Gaultier) | Sunnies & Jewellery (Poshmark)  PRESENTING THE …

The Fab 40s Go Grunge

Stripped down, cool. Flipping the glamour narrative.   Anyone else recall Marc Jacob’s historic grunge collection in 1993 for Perry Ellis?  You know, the own which got him fired which, in turn, led to the conceptualisation and birth of Marc Jacobs, the brand we all know (and worship) today?  It was a ballsy move indeed.  Introducing a sartorial grammar so far removed from the excessive, maximalist life of debauchery of the time, that few understood any of the words uttered, let alone speak it.  A move filled with bravado, yes, and a significant one in the movement we now coin being “fashion mimicking the street“.  I’m fairly confident that concept is not new to most of us. For the next two decades, MJ’s radical grunge runway was emblematic of a collection-before-its-time, a raw, revolutionary response to what was a similarly raw decade. R E N E G A D E    D R E S S I N G The advent of youth culture (as grunge was called in those early days) arrived at the high …

The Fab 40s Go Preppy | Sheela Write

The Fab 40s Go Preppy

Penny loafers. Twinsets. Button-Downs.   I can easily trace my first encounter with the Sloane Ranger look when the late Princess Di entered my world.  It was 1980.  I was but a babe.  Borderline obsessed with royalty and fairy tale endings, with the fascinating world of style, beauty.  Completely intrigued by designers, and their sketches, how they derived inspiration, the process of putting together a collection.  Pinning, draping, the use of muslin, the importance of a signature house dress form. Not much has changed in the past 3 decades, I see. Sloane Rangers, yes.  Or Sloanies.  A recognisable tribe of yuppies that dressed in a manner that was well-bred, slightly above mainstream fashion, and a wee bit posh.  With a predilection for the countryside and, as such, their wardrobe contained reflected this somewhat (glamping, anyone?).  Favourite haunts include Sloane Square in Chelsea, London. It was this outfit in particular worn by Princess Di which has remained in my memory all these years.  The turtleneck.  Corduroy blazer.  Pinstriped pencil skirt.  Shiny, well-polished pumps.  To me, that …

The Fab 40s In Hats

I can’t.  It’s impossible. There’s simply no such thing.   I (finally) watched Maleficent last night.  Truthfully, I yearn to exist in a logic-defying world. Somewhere where none are held captive by the confines of normality.  The sort of place where flights of fancy are the norm, rather than the exception.  Wherein the words, “can’t” or “impossible” or the phrase, “no such thing” do not even exist.  I fell in love with Maleficent’s technicolour world as well as all those wondrous beings residing in every nook and corner of the moors.  It’s that very same sensation that flows through me whenever I watch a Harry Potter flick, or any Narnia installment.  An incredible sense of awe and childlike wonder that echoes my childhood.  And I know it stems from being raised on a literary diet of Blyton, Tolkien and Lewis, since I was old enough to recognise my mother’s voice. Sadly, fantasies don’t have that much of a place in everyday life. For the most part, we’re dissuaded from what society terms as “daydreaming”.  In …

The Fab 40s In Bomber Jackets | Sheela Writes

The Fab 40s In Bomber Jackets

It’s that time again. Tis the season to go bomb diggity.   Now, if you’re feeling somewhat inclined to make a sporty statement, perhaps throw in a hint or three of flirt girl even, and display some of that unique personality (and why wouldn’t you), a light jacket is warranted.  More commonly known as the bomber, it’s essentially the lightweight spinoff of a varsity coat peppered with oodles of attitude and healthy doses of street gang chic.  In these times of great uncertainty, where change comes at lightning speed, familiarity has a way of comforting us.  And who doesn’t love a good remix of a classic? No longer confined by its military roots (as clearly evident from escalating use of feminine colours and motifs), the bomber has truly evolved into a fashion staple.  One found draped across the shoulders of nearly everyone who gives any thought to what they wear. And I believe I can safely include the vast majority of us within that cluster. Much more than merely an added layer, bomber jackets today are …

The Fab 40s Go (Mostly) All White | Sheela Writes

The Fab 40s Go (Mostly) All White

 Clean, crisp, chic. What does white say to you?   Across (almost) all cultures and communities, the colour white represents purity, innocence, light.  For many of us, it also symbolises the dawn of a new day.  A fresh start.  Be it from our own sins or the looming, long shadows of those of our fathers.  In these current times of fragility and uncertainty, it would seem only natural for us to harken back to white, to what it stands for. S T R E N G T H Loyalty. Honesty. All things good. Aren’t you as tired as I am to watch the most horrid, torrid happenings on the telly?  Tired and frustrated and sad and angry?  I’ve been told (by a therapist) that my emotions are quite expected under such circumstances.  That I shouldn’t be too hung up over feeling so helpless and trapped.  Apparently, the sensation of being powerless is rather the norm. Still, one can’t help but strain against the cords that bind, and that, my friends, is the honest to God …

The Fab 40s Turn PM To AM | Sheela Writes

The Fab 40s Turn PM To AM

 Sequins for breakfast? Evening wear sees light of day?   Not too long ago, making a public appearance (during the day) wearing anything remotely bedazzled or sequinned would instantly have attracted upwardly inching eyebrows and scanning eyes. At the time, such an after-eight ensemble would do naught but telegraph the words, “walk of shame”, I’d wager.  Insert amused snort.  Not that we haven’t actually been there and done that (shhhh, we know who we are) but in this case, it’s merely an instance of attaining the highest levels of chicdom (ahem) by turning cocktail attire into daywear. Yes, there’s a certain sense of bravado in venturing into broad daylight in pieces that run the gamut from bugle-beaded chiffon to metallic brocades (work-from-home advocate judgments be damned). Both the ladies who lunch and launch are now doing so in plumes and paillettes, with nary a hint of shame, remorse, or awkwardness.  Tempered, even, with more than a touch of rebellion. AS IT SHOULD RIGHTLY BE Indeed, putting evening pieces into day mode is a somewhat mind-boggling adventure, …