Jil Sander may be a label going through a strange transition currently, leaving it hanging in nomansland where design is happening by committee, but this season the label did create one of my most desired shoe shapes of fashion month so far.
I don't like snakeskin, so I hope they offer a more standard leather version too, which I'd most certainly consider saving up my pennies for.
I constantly find myself lusting after shoes the label creates and whilst Jil Sander herself is, once again, no longer at the helm of her own label, she must have imparted some kind of wisdom upon the team she leaves behind because these shoes have all the trademarks of a good Sander shoe which, in my opinion, are always borderline ugly in the best possible way.
Thinking about the Jil Sander collection this season as a whole which, although I didn't love as it did feel only subtley imbued with that very specific intelligence Jil Sander herself made the label famous for, I did none the less like it but many fashion journalists did not and it did make me think about the now infamous The Circus of Fashion article written by Suzie Menkes. In her lengthy "back in my day" dichotomy, she tells us that as a young journalist she was told; "It isn’t good because you like it; you like it because it’s good." and uses this to reference bloggers' self imposed task of reviewing the work of designers and how we don't do it terribly well. In fact, we do it terribly badly.
The clear inference was that bloggers usually find the work of designers to be good because they like it, or have been 'bought' by free product, implying that the bloggers review is therefore not as sophisicated or informed as that of a fashion journalist. But for me, if your gutteral reaction is to like a collection which then goes on to convert to a purchase, then that in itself makes the said collection a good one, even when the 'professional' journalists tell you it's not. How else should we measure the success of a designers work if not through sales? Ultimately, this is surely the goal of most designers - to sell their work?
Obviously there are still fashion journalists who feel bloggers are the idiot children of the fashion industry, to be kept locked up in a cupboard. I don't personally consider myself a writer or a journalist, merely an observor and consumer, however, I do feel that doesn't make my opinion less valid or informed, infact, as a consumer my opinion, and yours, holds the most weight since we are the people who's purses will be open or closed at the tills. Sure, Suzie Menkes can say something is fabulous darling, but if we don't like it and we don't buy it then ultimately it's merely fabulous as a concept only and concepts don't pay the rent.
This article is in no way a rebuttal to the Suzie Menkes piece because, to be honest, I don't give a flying shit about what Suzie Menkes thinks of my kind and nor does she give a shit about what I think of her article. It was more a consideration of the value of opinion - my opinion, your opinion and the opinions of the "elite", as Ms Menkes describes herself.
For me, when it comes down to it, a collection is good because you like. If I like it and you like it then the label sell the clothes, we wear the clothes and everybody is happy. Everyone except Suzie...