On the Market? Keep it on the shoulders

AllyG: I’m back! Hopefully I will be able to achieve full-time co-blogging status again. I warn you in advance that there may be some hiccups this week as this is the first week sans El Jeffe. He has gone back to work leaving me holding our baby, sobbing endless tears with my face pressed up against the window of our front door. I’m nothing without my talent for guilt trips. The last few weeks have been heartbreak without you, my fair fashionistas. Please trust that while I absolutely  have experienced the best moments of my life welcoming my new son,  they have been anything but fashionable for me…and for Hugh for that matter. Although I dreamed of slipping on my skinny jeans immediately after returning from the hospital, it was not to be. Apparently having major surgery (a la C section) requires you to eat, sleep and breathe in leggings and other stretchy type pantaloons. I love you American Apparel and Lululemon. Seriously, in all honesty when one of my besties asked me if there was anything they could pick up for me and the baby I sent them to AA to buy some leggings. I was in desperate need. And Hugh has suffered some fashion disasters of his own (L-A, I promise this won’t become a mommy blog, but some stories must be shared). For his first Dr appt I had him neatly attired in a baby Gap jacket and baby Gap pants. He had been freshly bathed, hair brushed…he looked ridiculously fierce. The kid was SMEYESing like no tomorrow. Needless to say, he had an “accident” in the Dr office that required a SWOT team to clean up. I’m talking explosive. Sadly, his fashion blogger mother had neglected to pack the requisite “back-up” outfit and BabyG went home wrapped in receiving blankets and a wool blanket. Yes, that’s right…BabyG had a Drive of Shame to Bedford before he even hit university.

Alas, I am back, and I am here to start a convo about the one shoulder trend. Do we love it? Let’s discuss!

I’ve done some research after my hubby made quite the insightful comment about the look. He informed me that apparently the male sex tends to partially base their opinion of how attractive a member of the opposite sex is on facial and body symmetry. I found this intriguing so of course I grabbed BabyG and his spitrag and hit up google to learn more.

Here’s what we found!

The rationale behind symmetry preference in both humans and animals is that symmetric individuals have a higher mate-value; scientists believe that this symmetry is equated with a strong immune system. Thus, beauty is indicative of more robust genes, improving the likelihood that an individual’s offspring will survive. This evolutionary theory is supported by research showing that standards of attractiveness are similar across cultures.

So, then, how does the one-shoulder trend initially adored in the 80’s (sigh…the eighties…again) rate when you’re out downing martinis trying to pull a mate? Any of our male readers wish to weigh in?

Personally, I’m so-so on the trend. I dig Alexander Wang’s version of the look:

Alexander Wang

I have a feeling that L-A will find this too “Carrie Bradshawish”. Will I be right?

[L-A: I have to address this directly: sweet jesus in a bread basket! That’s beyond even Carrie Bradshaw. That’s getting dressed drunk in the dark!]


I’d be all over the above if it was in black. Sheer in white = trash. It’s something Britney Spears would wear to Target, or Targhay if you will.

Jason Wu lurves the one shoulder, as seen on Michelle Obama at the Inaugural Ball:


He continues to insert the one-shoulder dress into his Spring 2010 Resort collection.


Hmm…I don’t know…I still find it slightly off-putting. Now this dress, this dress I can get down with:

Jason Wu

Do you love? Or do you LOVE? What’s wrong with the old fashioned two shoulder look? I would do anything to have this dress. Granted, I would have to just hang it around my neck for now because my “child bearin’ hips” have yet to forgive me for the last nine months. Still, I would, I would wear that dress around my ever lovin’ neck every day.

L-A, are you loving or hating this trend? Also, how about some pop music!? I have noticed the corny pop videos have been sadly missing while I have been away. Let’s dedicate a song to my hips, shall we?

L-A: You know what I’m loving? The Ally Blogging trend! Hooray! Even if it does mean the return of crappy pop songs.

Okay, now moving on from my excitement to have Ally back, we can address the topic at hand: the assymetrical look.  Ally’s use of a sciencey quote got me to thinking about what my sciencey friend Dr. F would have to say on the subject. You see, she’s a holder of fancy degrees (hence the doctor title) and a researcher of these kinds of things. To protect her academic integrity, I will just refer to her as Dr. F.  I sent her an email because she does read up on this sort of area of evolutionary business and she said there’s a lot of bullshit behind it.  But, her official quote is:

“There are two camps of thought about the reason lopsidedness might be important. On the one hand, some evolutionary psychologists propose that what is symmetrical is the most attractive. On the other hand, though, is the idea that distictiveness over-rides the importance of symmetry. What is distinctive could be attractive. One shouldered sweaters are definitely distinctive, which makes the wearer memorable.”

(look at us doing research and getting quotes from real people. It’s like we’re real journalists or something).

That leads me to ask: are some of these outfits even worth remembering? Because that off the shoulder white shirt that Ally found? I meant it when I said that the model looked like she got dressed in the dark after a few too many drinks. I’ve seen walks of shame look better than that. Overall, I don’t hate the one-shoulder look. It’s often a bit too 70s/80s for my taste (stay tuned for a coming post on the 80s), but it’s not the worst thing to happen in fashion these days (hello harem pants jumpsuits!). Let’s start with something I don’t completely hate:

tbags_nap michaelkors_nap

The first is T-Bags (what an unfortunate name) and the second is Michael Kors. While I don’t hate these two dresses, I don’t particularly like them either. But, the assymmetrical, one shoulder thing does make them more distinctive and memorable than they might be if they had both shoulders. Now here are some dresses that are both distinctive and memorable, but not in a good way:

ashish_nap dvf_fr_nap

Animal print + interesting fabric choice  + missing sleeve = all wrong in my books. That first one by Ashish is some serious bedazzling. Designers need to remember that it is possible to use too many sequins.  As for the second, to be fair to DVF, I will always be a little harsh on animal prints. I really don’t like them.

Another line that is not quite as extreme as the above version, but I’m still pretty iffy on, is Preen and Preen Line:

preen_nap preenline_nap

What’s the difference between Preen and Preen Line? About $500.  Neither dress is horrendous, but I there’s just something about it I don’t like. Is it that I need symmetry in my dress? Well, I can’ say for sure. What I can say for sure is that there are places where asymmetry should never happen and that is on your hips:

acne2_nap jilsander_rw_nap

Because what girl doesn’t want attention drawn to her hips. Especially if it’s going to make one hip look bigger than the other. No golf claps for you ACNE (another unfortunate name, despite the fact that it is an acronym) and Jil Sander. None.  And just in case you think I’m being harsh on these two dresses, let’s take a closer look at them:

acne_nap jilsander_bk_nap

You may like the asymmetrical look, but this is asymmetry gone horribly awry. They actually make me think of something a Project Runway contestant would send down the runway, only to have Nina Garcia point out that women don’t want that kind of attention drawn to their hips. And she would be right! So why is a seasoned designer like Jil Sander doing this? She needs a Nina Garcia sitting at the end of the runway waiting to judge. (wait…I guess that’s part of what Nina Garcia does with her job…except without the actual scoring and the aufing of designers. More professional designers need to live in fear of being aufed. Just saying).

Finally, there are these two dresses that sort of defy logic:

moschinocc_nap roksanda_ilincic_fr_nap

This is just an abuse of yards and yards of fabric. They may even compete with harem pants jumpsuits as Clothes That Shouldn’t Exist. That second dress by Roksanda Ilincic looks like the ruffled thing that ate Kate Hudson’s arm last year.

I don’t know if there is anything to this symmetry being more attractive thing, but I’m pretty sure I’m not attracted to any of those dresses.

Now time to finish watching Heartland on CBC. Because in my spare time I’m a 13 year old girl who likes horses.

teardrops and tea

The Wooden Monkey