There’s a new/old decorative element of style that has me positively obsessed these days–its origin is antique and it conjures fantasies of unwrapping a precious gift for its recipient.
Bows date back in fashion history longer than any of us have existed, and for bloody good reason: they’re feminine, stylish and lovely to look at, and can be worn in infinite ways.
Lately I’ve been going a bit bow-crazy, scouring the shops for a bevy of bows. I love the way they can look elegant, classy and sweet; or dramatic, whimsical and coquettish. I also love the way they can take center stage as an enormous ornament or simply work as an adornment for an accessory, or even become the accessory itself.
John Galliano ties one on for his Maison Margiela fall 2016 collection, and this giant bow, in rich gorgeous chocolate, is the fabulous focal point for the entire ensemble. I love the proportions of this thoroughly-modern bow! Amazingly, the exaggerated scale looks appropriate for chic day drama in an earthy urban palette, as Galliano brilliantly redefines the bow.
Formally, Zoe Kravitz was fit to be tied at the Met Gala this year in dark and dreamy Valentino. Valentino loves the bow almost as much as I do, and has used bows in many a garment over the years, as seen in the little red day dress below, worn by the perpetually-chic Alexa Chung. It looks so sweet and current. What a difference a bow can make!
This elegant sleeve from Chloe in 2009, below, undoubtedly shows that you can never have too many bows! Just look at the timelessness of the detail and tell me what I already know: it’s all in the bow!
Notice how the bow can dominate or embellish, it’s entirely up to you! I also appreciate the fact that you can dress the bow up or down, and wear it sexy, schoolgirl or couture.
For spring, summer or winter, fall for the bow and you won’t go wrong. This grey tweed bow by Christian Dior, shot by Paolo Roversi for Vogue Italia, proves that bows smartly travel through all seasons and can be worn on any occasion.
Above is more Dior, a pumpkin gown punctuated with a beaded bow.
But the humble bow can also remain modern and minimalist, as seen in this Yves Saint Laurent summer dress photographed by Martin Lidell for L’Officiel Russia back in 2010. This design looks as current to me today as it did six years ago, which speaks volumes about the bow!
Christian Lacroix used the bountiful bow for Schiaparelli Haute Couture in the bustled beauty above. I love the whimsy of his powder pink plaid. Stunning!
Victorio & Lucchino embellish a model’s assets in a sleek silver sheath adorned with a dramatic Asian-textile bow.
Bows are ideal in bridal, as seen in the wide geisha-style wrap above, but they can also surface simply as a delicate accent on a garment or worn in the hair for flirtatious effect.
This shoulder ribbon, in an editorial for Harper’s Bazaar shot by Solve Sundsbo, proves that the bow need not look bold to create a maximum impact.
Just a bit of ribbon tied in a loose pony can elevate bedroom hair to a couture coif in seconds! I love the sweet simplicity of it. It’s so effortless looking and incredibly sexy!
And speaking of sexy, I’m currently crushing on the hair-as-sculpture bows, pioneered by Valentino in 2006 and worn famously by both Paris Hilton and Lady Gaga.
They look just as cool with couture as they do with a casual, fresh summer dress, and now you can find clip-on hairbows at the wig stores and beauty supply and in a variety of colors, so you don’t have to have mad skills to look charmingly coy if you decide to jump on the bow bandwagon!
The bow is a glamorous, chic and feminine element which has remained timeless in the history of fashion. I now invite you all to take a bow!
Peace. Love. Beauty. xxx