Friday, December 3, 2010

Pirate Does Rock and Roll? That's Not News.

Note: this post is number 9 in a series in which the Bitches attempt looks from the Lucky Guide to Mastering Any Style using clothes from our own closets.

Rock and Roll - What's it mean?

Pirate: Like Bombshell, this look is pretty easy to interpret. The Rock and Roll look embodies the fashions of your favorite rock and roll icons, but put together in a way that doesn't make you look like you're ready to go on stage. I always think of Rock and Roll as a middle finger to the rest of the week, wardrobe-wise: this is the look where it's okay to put pieces that appeal to your inner teenager together with the pieces that your outer grown-up has to wear. It's a grown-up sized step away from my high school days when I was constantly skirting the edge of acceptable fashion. But it's not a costume—this is a look that is edgy and fun. It may help to think of it as 'Rocker Chic' rather than rock and roll, to think of it in grown-up terms.

Moi: I'm up to my eyeballs in work this week and am barely able to make it out of my pajamas or running clothes, so I'm going to hang up my leather jacket, my skinny pants, my sequin waistcoat, and my stiletto booties and let Pirate take point on this one.

Rock and Roll Icons

The classic Rock and Roll Icons include Crissie Hynde (whom Moi loves with every ounce of her being):

Debby Harry:

Patti Smith:

and more recently, Kate Moss:

But before I lose my punk rock cred, I will say that I don't claim these artists as my favorite musicians, their music was always far too mainstream to me. My personal idea of a Rock and Roll icon is Wendy O Williams (RIP). Wendy O wasn't really a big fan of clothing, so she kind of doesn't work for this. The classic rock and roll icons' part sexy / part bad-girl style, however, is another story. These are the women who had the wild smarts to put leather with leopard with red stilettos, and make it classic. To take this look to work as an adult takes some thought.

The Pieces

The basic pieces for a strong rock and roll look are denim and leather, mixed with a few girly-girl pieces (pencil skirts, tube skirts, goth dresses) and some harder, edgier pieces (studded jewelery). I looked in my closet on this one and was actually a little shocked. Unlike Arty Slick where I have a "strong tendency," I own almost every essential piece in the rock and roll repertoire: skinny jeans, sparkly tank, zippered shift, skull ring, tuxedo jacket, concert t-shirts, over the knee boots, motorcycle jacket. . . Oh yes. I think I have found myself on this one.

Many fashion lines are doing rock-and-roll type pieces that can easily be paired with your work-day wardrobe without going too far over the edge: for example, glammy t-shirts you can wear with a nice jacket and skirt, or leopard print accented anything.

Putting it together

The key on this style is to try not to go too crazy with the denim or the leather, or you'll look like you just finished your shift at the local biker bar. It helps if you understand t-shirts and jeans better than anything else in your closet, and aren't afraid of crazy shoes. This isn't essential to putting together Rock and Roll looks, but it sure doesn't hurt.

Calvin Klein zippered funnel-neck shift, Alexander McQueen heart shoes

To me, one of the most appealing aspects of this style is its pure irreverence: take a grown-up piece (like this school-boy blazer) and put it with something unexpected (fine Italian silk scarf, with skulls) just to confuse people.

J. Crew "Professor" blazer, J. Crew t-shirt, J. Crew vintage toothpick jeans, Alexander McQueen scarf, Vivienne Westwood for Melissa plastic pumps

Outrageous is good too. Try wearing "outrageous" in public and just pretend it's okay—and it'll be okay. Of course it's okay to wear the Bellboy jacket out in public. Over the knee boots? Hell yes. Why not put them together?

Forever 21 jacket, linen skull scarf, jCrew vintage jeans, BCBG boots

Yes, I like a lot of shredded denim - but you don't have to wear the shredded denim to get the look, you can wear your good jeans and still feel a little bad-ass. Wearing a concert t-shirt with a good blazer isn't just a look for boys, you know...

Cartonnier for Anthropologie linen tuxedo jacket, J. Crew vintage jeans, J. Crew belt, Vampire Weekend t-shirt, Vivienne Westwood for Melissa shoes

In this look, it's always okay to mix animal prints.

Black skinny jeans, Gap t-shirt, Anthropologie vest, sparkly leopard scarf, Madden Girl satin zebra peep toe pumps

And wearing a motorcycle jacket adds a little bit of tough to any look

Harley Davidson distressed leather jacket

Final Thoughts on This Look

Although this is maybe not a look suitable for every day, you can certainly get away with elements of it on any day. I love wearing elements of rock and roll as part of my individual style every day.

Next up, we close the event with Posh Eclectic!