I already said that I consider The Thin White Duke to be “my” Bowie (everybody has one, they just need to find him) but that was yesterday and today I realise that the Bowie I’m more likely to reference when getting dressed is of the early seventies Ziggy Stardust/Aladdin Sane/Diamond Dogs era.
By this time, he’d already had an impact in his Mr Fish dresses (if I had anything like that in the wardrobe, you can be sure I’d be wearing it this week) and he was onto exploring an even more radically androgynous persona.
Japanese designer Kansai Yamamoto had moved to London in 1971, and was concerned with adapting traditional Japanese forms into a very modern look. The aesthetic is pure Kabuki theatre, with bold colours and exaggerated silhouettes. Bowie was eager to wear his creations, and hired him for the Aladdin Sane tour. The rest, as they say, is fashion history.
- the inscription in kanji on the white cape is a homophone for David Bowie. It translates as “Fiery vomiting and venting in a menacing manner”.
- the rabbit onesie was worn by Kate Moss to collect an award on Bowie’s behalf.
I am completely obsessed with this garment. True confession: this is the kind of thing I would wear all the time if I thought for a moment I could get away with it (I always wanted a Pam Hogg jumpsuit) and now I discover that there may be a knitting pattern for it. I have to learn to knit.
Until that happens, I am making do with a vaguely body con knit dress from Sonia Rykiel pour H&M accessorised with a shearling scarf in lieu of a feather boa. Or an asymmetric patterned sweater with gold pants (reposted) another direct reference to this look. Or even the vintage Kansai top that you all politely but firmly talked me out of last month.
In fact, I can go back through any number of looks from the last year or so and see an awful lot of Bowie in my style, which is unsurprising when I think about it. It’s Bowie’s world, after all. I just live in it.