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The Rules of Fashion 2

The last week has been a complete blur- between New York Fashion Week and grad school I've had my hands full. While I wasn't able to attend as many shows and parties as I usually do (schoolwork is a drag with a hangover), I made it to all the shows I really care about in NY- the ones my friends are involved with. So many articles, blog posts and tweets have been written in the last week about all of the shows that I have little interest in adding my opinions about everything at the current moment, except to say that I am a little under whelmed- so far there have been no looks or pieces that have grabbed me, shook me and pulled out my heart (and wallet). Now I'm just waiting for London, the hometown of my favourite designers- hopefully they have some beauties up their sleeves.

A week or so ago I put up the first rule of style from Edna Woolman Chase's Always in Vogue, and here is the second...


Point #2: This does not have to do with clothes; it does have to do with good grooming, a vital part of fashion, and I think it is valid.

Set your dressing table in front of a window, so that the uncompromising light of day will fall evenly upon your face when you are making up. If, because of architectural reasons, this is impossible, place it so the light, day or artificial, comes equally from both sides. This will help you to achieve a well-blended make-up and to do your hair becomingly. Also always have your hand mirror within reach, that you may see yourself from the side and back as well as from the front.

As she says, this doesn't explicitly have to deal with fashion but I think we would all agree of the importance of good light when applying make-up. At all the many, many parties this week I had the opportunity to watch a great many people and I was amazed at how badly most people's make-up was applied. It was obvious that many hours were put into coming up with artfully disheveled outfits and that they had also taken the time to apply a full face, but either without a good mirror or good light. Bad foundation will honestly destroy any outfit, and if you actually look at any of the editors at Vogue or other style icons they wear very little face make-up so there are alternatives to wearing badly suited base. Obviously we can't all afford the space to have a dressing up table, or afford the cost of a good facialist like fashion editors, but all of us can benefit from making ourselves up in the type of full light that Ms. Chase describes.

Excerpt from: Chase, Edna Woolman and Ilka. Always in Vogue. Garden City, New York: Doubleday & Company Inc.,1954. Photo by Baron de Meyer, 1919.

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