DNA


my immediate family introduces me to their new purchases with a mixture of caution and hopefulness. perhaps i won't close my eyes and shake my head slowly. maybe, just once, i'll squeal with delight and congratulate them on their amazing taste. hasn't happened yet, but a person can dream. growing up my interest in clothing, when it was addressed at all, was always been met with a little appreciation (helpful advice whenever you want it -- i do try to give them a chance to solicit it first) and a little resentment (i guess there might be something frustrating about living with a critic who can figuratively ruin a new skirt not 20 minutes into owning it).
i've never had a close relationship with a style-inspiration. i have no theatrical aunt, no debonair uncle. the other day my mom just couldn't accept another dictum and challenged, "how on earth can the length of a purse strap make that much of a difference?"
how on earth can she not understand?

does style run in your family?

10 comments:

Carlene said...

My mom, who is 83, wears a sweatshirt that says "Whatever," and when she spills coffee on a top, she embroiders a little daisy over the stain.

Not sure if that's a yes or a no answer.

Career Girl said...

I tend to think that each generation is a direct reaction to the one that came before it . OK, so that doesn't make me feel very unique either. But listen, I grew up in the country with a mother who never owned so much as a mascara wand - cut to a six year old me rocking back and forth in my room clutching a tattered copy of Vogue. I was forever trying to turn an old tablecloth into a groovy ballgown.
So I'm with Carlene on this one...

Allure said...

No, definitely style doesn't run in my family. As cruel as it might sound, I laugh at my sister's taste frequently. A few weeks ago she bought a "cashmere" pullover at Zara, and I was like- 30€ for that? I mean, you must be so innocent(she's older than me) to believe it's cashmere.

GenX Theorist said...

My answer is yes! I'm very influenced by my family members...

My parents are academics and when they were young they were bohemian-nerds...incredibly smart and accomplished but also prone to hanging out with cool groups of friends from around the globe and not a smidge of pretention about them. They abhore any sort of snobbiness, two more humble people you'll never meet. But they're amazing.

Now, I don't think either of them consider themselves fashion-y...my Dad sticks to his physics professor uniform (button downs and slacks) and my Mom gives herself less credit than she deserves (she always looks beautiful)...but somehow that beatnik jazz coolness transferred over to me as a kid, as did the colorfulness that I picked up living in Amsterdam... and I feel those to be some of the building blocks of my style.

The other family influence is my east coast family. I don't have siblings but I have 3 gorgeous cousins who live in New York and Conneticut, and when the gang of us get together I feel a sort of fabulousness that comes with being part of a group of sisters - a la Diana Ross' girls, or something. :) They are all very stylish and unique.

That said, I am definitely the fashion person in my family - I'm the only one who considers Vogue a serious publication. But I kindof like my role - if I'dve grown up with my mom or some other influence being an uber-fashionista, perhaps I wouldn't have developed my own style?

Libertygirl said...

Never sure if it is good or bad that my entire family are OBSSESSED! We egg each other on too much... but then again, having a mother who bought herself a Birkin can't be a bad thing... xx

anais said...

my mother in the 60s and 70s was incredibly stylish. i find myself dressing a bit like her style back then, and often i'm attracted to things because they remind me of her when i was growing up. i always joke that my personal style is one part dita von teese, one part neil young and one part my mum in 1977!

i tend not to comment on my family's clothing purchases. i have three sisters and our styles are so radically different that i don't really impose my criteria of style on them. and generally we are a "live and let live" type of family...

landis said...

style runs deep in my family, but in that kind of patrician east coast way, complete with a grandmother in sweater sets and a mother who bought her wedding dress at bendel's.

however it has become a bit out of control with me, what with the obsession with raf simons, martin margiela, all things dries, and a touch of mcqueen thrown in to keep things embroidery/feathery/over the top.

Candid Cool said...

I definitely got my taste in style from my dad. I used to sneak into his closet as a kid & admire his ties, dress shirts, and cologne. And we used to watch Cary Grant, Hitchcock, Bond (Connery), Audrey Hepburn, and the Umbrellas of Cherbourg together.
-h

Anonymous said...

unfortunately, not really. neither my siblings are not into fashion. my mother, from what i can tell from pictures of her when she was younger, may have been stylish and cool in her 20s, but that era is long gone. she now believes that brighter is always better, and she lives in knit pants and matching oversized tops. she'll wear utter crap just cos it's cheap, and doesn't understand the idea that something well-made and more expensive can actually be a better value. being that i'm a designer, it makes it hard to relate to her.

she also still insists upon buying clothes for me as gifts, clothes which i invariably don't like, but she continues. ! the example that will live in my mind forever is from the late 80s: a pair of leggings with vertical stripes of varying widths in green, yellow, orange, white, and GOLD that she found at a discount store (surprise). they were worse than a court jester's outfit and she seriously didn't understand why me or my sister didn't love them. i am laughing right now thinking of the absurdity of it...

editor said...

anonymous - my sister would probably have loved those leggings (see comment section under my Inspiration - pippi post, lol).
kind of weird when you feel like something that you're interested in (fashion/style) must have skipped a generation or something.