HTSI editor’s letter: how to say ‘I do’
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This week’s issue was inspired, in large part, by the HTSI deputy chief subeditor Alex Tyndall – or, in fact, his mother. Katy Tyndall wrote to me last winter with a fairly common question: what should she wear to her eldest son’s wedding in the spring?
Having worked in fashion for nearly 15 years now, I am only ever asked for two pieces of style advice by readers. The first concerns what cut of jeans is currently considered fashionable (to which, right now, I would say super-wide and baggy, like an early-Noughties rapper, or straight and ’90s-flavoured – a classic Levi’s, for example, – with an ankle-baring crop). The other question concerns what to wear to weddings, a sartorial conundrum that still seems to get us in a spin. Blokes want to know where to buy a well-priced suit that will see them through a wedding season – that period of time during your late 20s and early 30s when there seems to be a wedding every weekend. Girlfriends agonise over dress codes that range from summer-casual to evening glamour, and take place anywhere from a rainy registry office in Chelsea to a Tuscan cathedral or a scrumpy-sodden marquee in a field. While wedding ceremonies have become more relaxed, spontaneous or exotic, the uniforms that accompany such occasions have actually become more complicated. Once upon a time a guy could just throw on a morning suit, while gals fixed on a fascinator. Today’s weddings come with their own unique specifications as to what guests should wear.
With that in mind we’ve tried to offer solutions for all sorts of wedding requirements. As someone who has never managed to nail an “occasion” outfit – I sway between looking ridiculously over-fashionable or miserably dour – I am paying close attention. The second-wedding outfit in particular has my name on it: maybe it is time my (very much first and only) husband and I renew our vows?
Engagement rings are also undergoing a reinvention. Less likely to follow the traditional path in opting for a big fat solitaire, today’s couples are getting creative with their choices. Vivienne Becker looks at a new service that allows couples to cut their own bespoke piece from a rough diamond, while Jessica Beresford rounds up a bouquet of more unusual bands. For a huge number of couples, however, the wedding journey begins with the presentation of a duck-egg coloured box. Founded in 1837, Tiffany & Co first became synonymous with engagement rings when Charles Lewis Tiffany invented the “Tiffany Setting” diamond ring in 1886. The setting went on to become an industry-wide standard, and the jeweller a beneficiary of the subsequent craze for diamonds as the stone of the enfianced. The brand is entering a new era of invention under its LVMH owners: here, Lauren Indvik talks to Alexandre Arnault and Anthony Ledru about their bold ambitions to disrupt the jewellery market, transform the flagship, bring in Gen-Z consumers and reposition the brand. It may seem bold to hear the new executives discuss their focus on the jeweller becoming more inclusive and lifestyle-oriented. But given that Tiffany was first built on sales of “fancy goods” and stationery, I’m sure that it’s a strategy of which the founders would approve.
The race towards more “lifestyle” luxury products was driven home in Milan in February when I was invited to see Ferrari’s AW22 fashion line. Conceived by creative director Rocco Iannone, this newish venture by Ferrari hopes to engage a new demographic of consumers – especially women – who may not previously have had a relationship with the brand. It’s a trend increasingly seen among car manufacturers, including Porsche, Bugatti and McLaren, and I’m curious to see what happens: the offerings are very subtle for what I might usually associate with the F1 crowd. At any rate, I hope this doesn’t mean pit-stop style is becoming tasteful – I’m rather partial to a crimson leather jumpsuit emblazoned with a gigantic prancing horse logo.
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