Friday, August 21, 2009

wellies as high fashion

This fashiony bloggy thing seems to be going well so far, but you know, good things always start in an inspired way. I fear that soon we'll have to resort to dirty tricks. Like buying copies of Vogue. Ew.

So, while I was in Europe (tm), I
saw a lot of people wearing wellie boots. With regular clothes. Like this.

I'm used to seeing wellies in their natural setting. They're big ugly utility boots - they're meant for tramping around in the pond. Like these.
Understand, I was in Scotland, and this is not dry high desert territory, it's a wet, wet place. The good wellies are made in Scotland - they're made for survival. People are forced to wear wellies as part of their daily life - you know, to get to the coffee... However - I was not roaming the highlands or out trodding the bogs when I observed said shoe occurrence. I was in Edinburgh proper - an urban environment. Why, oh why, would people be wearing their wellie boots, with regular clothes, in the Cit-tay?

To their credit, these were not ordinary wellies, these were fun and unusual. And interesting (like these). They were so good, I'd almost (I SAID ALMOST) be tempted, you know, if a pair of these fell into my hands...

Hell, even Dame Westwood makes some fab Wellies

I'm almost sold on the idea - except for the fact that, they are Big, Heavy, Non-Breathing Rubber Boots. Not sexy. What is up with the wellie boot casual wear trend? Am I just that much of a desert rat that I don't get it?

I swear I've seen jCrew capitalize on this fashion nonsense before. And I see they've got some really good ones up for grabs right now, including the highly respectable Hunter boot made in Scotland. I think I've worn a pair of these, though not in this colour...


Tis, indeed, nonsense. The thing is, the Wellie, it is a beautifully built boot. I have had my very same pair for 15 years now. Not a thing wrong with them. But they are for the garden. For mucking out stalls . . . I hate the appropriation of “working person” style into the world of high fashion To me, it seems very condescending. Unless you’re calf deep in shit, mud, rain, or snow, forgo the Wellies.

Hm. Good point. Working boot appropriated for street fashion does seem condescending. There's a history lesson in there, somewhere.

My spouse has a friend still in the UK who is kind of a girl - well, he's a girl about shopping. He's all man in all the other ways. Anyways. He and I were speculating that wearing the wellies as streetwear was perhaps the only way one could ever wear the beautiful wellies. I mean, if you splash out on some pretty cool and fabby boots, you want to show them off. And you can't show them off to everyone if you're saving them only for the odd wet day tramping around in the country, right?

Perhaps he and I are thinking too practically.

Sometimes a cute boot is just a cute boot. There are always these:

Ho. Lee. Shit. That does change the color of the whole wellie thing. I suppose if it ever rained here, I could picture me swanning around town in something like this...No?

I for one cannot picture mucking stables in anything *except* those ugly green ones.

Ooooo, you said "swanning around." My favorite two-word phrase, next to, "Dinner's served." and "Louboutin sale." Dang it. I guess you could spend a day merrily swanning about in Wellies, provided you were: A. Swanning about someplace you normally wouldn't be – London, Paris, New York, Munich, you know, anywhere were it actually rains on a regular basis, and B. You were wearing an outfit just as offhandedly
insouciant as the one in the photo above.

Okay, we have got to get out of Europe and back to the states. I'm beginning to use French words.


Aunty Belle said...


About the wellies bein' "for the garden. For mucking out stalls . . . I hate the appropriation of “working person” style into the world of high fashion To me, it seems very condescending. "

Yeah, thas' what I say about blue jeans too...
Doan hit me! Stop, pummelin' me--I'e an ole lady ya know!

But the Ho. Lee.s? wow. Mr G. doan fool around, he jes' takes condescendin' to the workin' class to a whole other dimension

moi said...

Welcome, Aunty! Used to be, men and women both didn't leave the house without hats and gloves. And it wasn't that long ago, either. Although I have to admit a lifelong love of the blue jean, I am nonetheless interested in just how quickly we jumped from such formality to such casualness in only a few decades . . .

LaDivaCucina said...

Egad, some girls will put anything on their feet! This is almost as bad as wearing crocs!!! When I lived in Chicago back in the 80's, I had some killer plastic patent looking cowboy boots with flannel lining. They were the bomb cuz unlike leather boots that get wet in the snow and also get damaged from the salt, these kept my feet dry, warm and look fabu! I never saw anything like them again!

This kind of reminds me of the tragic Ugg boot from Australia, where I lived for 10 years. I state that so you know that I know that the sophisticated set used to make fun of people who wore them out of the house. Ugg boots are actually slippers. Wearing ugg boots out of the house was considered quite trailer trash and usually worn with sweat pants and a plaid flannel shirt. Imagine my surprise when I moved to L.A. after Sydney and found the little girls wearing to the knee Ugg boots with their mini skirts in the middle of summer! DOLTS! Of course, this was a place where I found girls wearing dress slips over jeans and shirts looking more like a homeless woman wearing all her clothes at once than any sort of fashion forward fashionista!

Boxer said...

they make my feet sweat, just like Crocs do, therefore I will not wear them. Even in mud or the Pacifc Northwest where they actually WOULD be helpful at times.

Have you seen the Ed Hardy versions?? HORRIBLE.

p.s. Uggs make my feet sweat too, so I have a major dislike for them too.

p.s.s. I do not normaly have sweaty feet. I just thought I should add that.

moi said...

LaDiva: The Aussies have contributed many wonderful things to the world. UGGS unfortunately are not one of them.

Boxer: Ed Hardy is on my hit list. Seriously. I HATE that his stuff has become "fashionable."

LaDivaCucina said...

Is Ed Hardy stuff going to be the new "crocs," the "fashion" crap we LOVE to hate? Have you seen the Ed Hardy champagne? Well, here on South Beach, if I see one more crystal-crusted over-priced skull shirt, I swear.....

Boxer said...

don't get me going on that John dumbshit, "eight is REALLY enough" guy pimping out Ed Hardy on every tabloid.

LaDivaCucina said...

Boxer! How weird. I put a comment about him wearing one of those shirts but I deleted it as I thought I was being verbose!!!! Simpatico again!

Aunty Belle said...

jes' seems to me that once ya emerge from yore lair, ya have an obligation to fellow humans to not assault their emotions too much--ya doan need to be no fashion plate, but a walking neurosis (crystal skulls)??

the Dread Pirate Rackham said...

You know, I had a thing for Ed Hardy stuff last year. I did. I will openly and freely confess it here. Then I found out that Christian Audigier was the same perpetrator of the overmarketing of Von Dutch...and I knew my crush would be short lived. In keeping with his same Scorched Earth Von Dutch Campaign, I quickly got oversaturated with the cool retro tattooey goodness that was Ed Hardy.

Ed and I, we kinda broke up.

Still, it makes me sad - Ed Hardy is a very interesting character permanently part of our iconic culture - and his works have been used to carpetbomb a certain fashion sector. On the one hand, I find the overuse of his good stuff appalling, but he did sell and Audigier did buy, so there's that.

I may have broken up with Ed, but I'll still wear my jeans with koi fish embroidered on the ass, because I like them.

The Ugg thing, though I have never understood. I find that just as weird as crocs. Those are not shoes, people.

Boxer said...

Pirate - ok, I have to confess that about three years ago I visited the Ed Hardy store in L.A. and bought a jacket. I loved that jacket and many parts of the Ed Hardy line.... UNTIL last year when I went to the Nordstrom "Rack" (their discount annex) and found Ed Hardy shirts that were being produced specifically for the RACK and not the store. Mass produced for the masses and STILL had a high price tag. Therefore, to me, the whole brand was diluted and I broke up too.

LaDiva my friend, THEN, it went from Madonna to Jon GAG-ME wearing the schnizz and the designs changed too. Less cool more K-Fed. Bah!

moi said...

Pirate, I do so dig your koi fish jeans and I'd wear the hell out of them if they were mine. They're unusual and artistic, just like Hardy is. Unfortunately, much like, say, Harleys, the Hardy/Audigier pairing didn't result in something classic, just something that, in its appropriation by people not born to be wild, becomes cliched and watered down.

fishy said...

Fashion Moi,
Those boots with the great looking Koi on them? THOSE are the very boots I took to our Mermaid ... and YES she does wear them to the barn on wet gloomy days...she says they cheer her no end. She also wears them to the park with the foundling raspberry Doberman bitch.