Pretty Woman

Posted by Laura
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This swimsuit sculpts and flatters—note the shaped bust and the born-again low-cut leg—but Lycra has replaced restrictiveness. Black and white check Lycra swimsuit on leather spaghetti straps, Christian Dior.



Sometimes I have to admit to falling for an editorial simply for the sheer prettiness of it—the way it effortlessly captures all of my favourite elements in a perfect package. This is one of those editorials. While neither the images nor the clothes broke any new ground in 1995—they are all mid-'90s updates on classic 1950s silhouettes—all of it is done exquisitely well. Yasmeen and Meghan are at their loveliest in perfect suiting and sorbet shades. Is there a better tailor alive than John Galliano? His peplum suit in the second image is a masterwork of shaping and form (something sadly missing from his current work at Margiela). These are the kind of images that want me to revamp my makeup drawer and set new goals in my vintage collecting—both in terms of tracking down similar Galliano suits and that candyfloss pink Versace halter dress, but also in finding more of the Fifties pieces that inspired these looks. Thinking of it, possibly a new life in Palm Beach?


Meghan Douglas and Yasmeen Ghauri photographed by Mario Testino for Vogue UK, February 1995.  



The hourglass figure returns with the help of a jacket which goes in and out in all the right places and a skinny belt to accentuate the waist. Black and white check wool jacket fitted to waist with peplum. Matching calf-length skirt. Belt. All by John Galliano. Faux leopard-print hat, by Stephen Jones for John Galliano.



An ultra-fitted jacket with a cupid's bow of a neckline underlines feminine curves; looser trousers balance the equation. Black wool gabardine single-breated jacket. Wide-leg white linen trousers. Both at Chanel Boutique.



Pink takes the plunge and turns sugary into sexy with a figure-hugging halterneck dress. Candyfloss pink jersey dress with plunging neckline and long, layered skirt tied at hip, at Gianni Versace.



Nineties handling of Fifties favourites—the fitted jacket, slim skirt, three-quarter-length sleeve—gives them a new lease of life. The differences? Lightweight fabric, a hint of flare in the skirt, ice-cream colours... Lilac and lemon crepe single-breasted jackets and matching softly flared knee-length skirts. All at DKNY.



The simplest solutions are often the best: a neat little jacket, cut to curve, a pair of slim trousers and the timeless combination of black and white make for minimum fuss, maximum impact. White silk crepe single-breasted jacket. Cropped top with spaghetti straps. Black crepe straight leg pants with turn-up. All by Hervé Léger.



Frothy layers of tulle puff up the new full skirt but sexy high heels and a sophisticated sweep of hair curb any tendency to tweeness. Polka-dot fitted cotton jacket, with matching full skirt. Tulle petticoat. All at Emanuel Ungaro.



An immaculate suit in shantung silk (a key fabric) with a bold line in buttons and discreet shoulder pads demands an equally immaculate approach to beauty. Silk belted jacket. Matching skirt. Both at Dolce & Gabbana.



Opposites attract: fit above the waist emphasizes free-flowing layers below. Metallic grey coat dress worn over chiffon strapless dress. Fitted V-neck dress with chiffon flowers at shoulder, worn over chiffon petticoat. Straw boater with feathers. All by Jean Paul Gaultier.



Perfectly poised: a fine check, finely cut jacket and couldn't-be-simpler skirt exude an air of restrained glamour. Black and white check belted jacket, and black crepe knee-length skirt. White grosgrain slingback shoes. All by Yves Saint Laurent Rive Gauche.



Sheer is still an idea to play with but with greater thought given to fit and definition, making crisp organza or Gazar an ideal choice. Feminine footwork calls for slim, high heels, ankle straps, peep toes... White silk Gazar sleeveless dress with slash neckline and full, pleated skirt. Red patent leather belt. Both at Gucci. Black grosgrain strappy sandals, by Donna Karan.



If you've got it, flaunt is: a close-cut cropped top is another way to focus on this season's centre of attention—the waist. White silk crepe cropped top with square neckline. Matching button-front straight skirt. Both at Krizia.



The well-bred dress—desirable attributes include a pretty collar, fitted waist and fairy-tale fabric—is brought bang up to date with an on-the-knee skirt. White voile and baby-blue polka-dot dress with short sleeves, fitted waist, and knee-length A-line skirt trimmed in lace at Vivienne Westwood.



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