Locked in Lace

From childhood, little girls are trained to appreciate femininity. We steer towards the pink bicycle with the sparkling tassels, charming ballet slippers, and swooshy skirts that swing aimlessly as we twirl.

At 23, I see little girls now as having a far more encompassing view of femininity than I did in the Lisa-Francophiled 1990s. But there’s something still so charming in overtly feminine clothes that reminds me of the fun of dressing up. I have a vivid memory of stomping my feet and shaking my finger at my mother, who had committed the atrocious sin of denying my request to wear an all-pink skirt/sweater combo for my Kindergarten school pictures (reason: it would clash with the sterile blue backdrop.) The thought of anyone, even my mother, taking the fun out of dressing up horrified my fragile sense of sassy style.

I’m a girl in my early twenties now, working in Manhattan and privy to the gamut of get-ups New Yorkers are capable of executing. Yet there’s something about lace – in all it’s girly, frivolously feminine, voluminous glory – that still lures me in. But now, it’s less to do with frilly socks and more about the ability of lace to juxtapose tough leather, gleaming metal jewelry, and destroyed denim too weathered and worn to relinquish. Now, I love lace best when worn with black, strewn with spikes, or tucked into leather lace-up boots.The thought of something as fragile as lace undergoing a mean-girl makeover is appealing. Like NYC, something beautiful can simultaneously feel constricting, overly typecast and stifling with too much potential for “pretty.” Roughing it up a bit is just the remedy.

{images via tumblr}

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