Recently I posted a link to Shocking! The Art and Fashion of Elsa Schiaparelli, on my Facebook Page. If you did click through and take the time to explore (which I highly suggest doing), you may have noticed a tab called "12 Commandments for Women" Wait. What?
Okay, so Ms. Schiaparelli was not one to mince words-- she said what was on her mind. She was influenced (as we all are) by the culture and time in which she lived. I have thought a lot about what she says. I respect her as a design genius, one of a kind, and stunningly talented person who left an indelible mark on the world of fashion in the 20th century. Who am I to challenge her rules? I certainly don't think I can begin to compare to her (Does the local little league coach compare to The Babe?) and although I do think some of what she says still holds water in many ways, some other things, definitely pin her into her culture and time period, and seem irrelevant for women today.
Because there are so many, I plan to write a little at a time about them over the coming several weeks or as the spirit moves me:) Without further ado, here are Elsa Schiaparelli's 12 Commandments for Women:
1. Since most women do not know themselves they should try to do so.
2. A woman who buys an expensive dress and changes it, often with disastrous result, is extravagant and foolish.
3. Most women (and men) are color-blind. They should ask for suggestions.
4. Remember-twenty percent of women have inferiority complexes. Seventy percent have illusions.
5. Ninety percent are afraid of being conspicuous, and of what people will say. So they buy a gray suit. They should dare to be different.
6. Women should listen and ask for competent criticism and advice.
7. They should choose their clothes alone or in the company of a man.
8. They should never shop with another woman, who sometimes consciously or unconsciously, is apt to be jealous.
9. She should buy little and only of the best or cheapest.
10. Never fit a dress to the body, but train the body to fit the dress.
11. A woman should buy mostly in one place where she is known and respected, and not rush around trying every new fad.
12. And she should pay her bills.
And there you have it. Elsa's 12 Commandments. Stay tuned for my take on each one, perhaps you can offer you thoughts as well-- I would love that!
I'm Denise Meyer, apparel designer in State College, PA, saving the world one clothing problem at a time!