Why Don’t You in 2013

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by Leandra Medine
July 29, 2013
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A modern interpretation of Vreeland’s popular, deceased column, titled – you guessed it – Why Don’t You.

 

It is still Diana Vreeland’s birthday and therefore reinterpreting the second most salient feature of her popularity is one fairly easy and highly enjoyable way that we can continue to distill her transcendent influence.

For the uninitiated or likewise the confounded, Diana Vreeland notoriously penned a column for Harper’s Bazaar from the years 1936 to 1962 titled, Why Don’t You? In it, she would pose her most urgent, creative, outlandish and sometimes downright preposterous questions. Examples of such included: “Why don’t you paint a map of the world on all four walls of your boys’ nursery so they won’t grow up with a provincial point of view?”, or “use a gigantic shell instead of a bucket for your champagne?”.

Often these questions were deeply inspiring, (“Why don’t you cover a big cork bulletin board in bright pink felt, banded with bamboo, and pin with colored thumb-tacks all your various enthusiasms as your life varies from week to week?”), and may or may not have elicited some of the most prominent designer markers we have today (“Why don’t you wear black leather mules with red leather heels?” – Christian Louboutin, anyone?). But regardless of the genre of question, her delivery was always the same: a deadpan sense of why-haven’t-you-answered-my-question yet? One not unlike yours might look while ceaselessly seeking a bathroom but finding no help in locating the excrement drop-off. This, even if Vreeland was loitering behind the pages of her magazine.

Long over are those days though which is why injecting it with some millennial relevance seemed like the only surefire way to continue celebrating the centenary. Above you will find several slides masterfully photoshopped by one Charlotte that ask the age-old, trend-shattering, rule-breaking question: Why Don’t You?

In order:

Why don’t you…

Wear your childhood stuffed animal on your head as a hat? (Though this photo is of me and comes from the Blah-Proof dressing dissertation care of last week, we’re pretty sure one Charlotte Olympia has already begun practicing the trade.)

Bathe in green juice? If it’s that good for our interiors, it can’t be particularly bad for our exteriors?

Suggest dressing Amanda Bynes in head to toe Calvin Klein (we’d vet for a white pant suit)? It will indubitably mitigate her instability and make her feel far too regal to tweet such obscenities.

Shut your phone off for one day? Just one day. Come on, try it.

Host a seance with The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills but in doing so eschew their original intentions and convince them to help bring Michael Jackson back from the dead?

Use black lipstick as a thick, dewey black eye-liner and shadow?

Clip two necklaces together and wear them as a choker?

Or, skip that all together and pull a lampshade off your lamp, wear it around your neck and call it an improvisational Delfina Delettrez choker you’ve DIY’ed (Also a Vreelandian concept) to match your ailing dog?

Set up three Tinder dates for one night? I’m sure Vreeland would agree that it’s best to have a deluge of promising options at all times.

And finally – why don’t you wear a Maison Martin Margiela couture face mask to Soul Cycle? As Vreeland has famously declared, “a woman should always be elegant.”

REPLIES
  • CDJ

    In college, I wore a lampshade on my head, telling everyone I was lady “JaJa”… soo, been there, done that. Shutting the phone off seems like the ultimate challenge, though.

    • Leandra Medine

      That was very Oscar de la Renta fw 2013 of you.

      • CDJ

        I wish my landlord saw it that way instead of deducting money from my deposit.

  • chatNoir

    I once scheduled to meet three Match.com coffee dates on one Sat afternoon: at 1, 2, & 3pm. unfortunately, all 3 dudes turned out to be lame dates. but, it was fun/exciting/hopeful, to go from one appointment to the next , just to see what the next date might bring !

  • his love of fashion

    I love this woman !! Great post ! If you haven’t seen her documentary check it out http://www.hisloveoffashion.com/2013/06/diana-vreeland-first-fashion-editor.html

  • http://www.thecovetcase.com/ Erica Wright

    Great article as always MR!

    New post up on my blog!
    http://www.thecovetcase.com/2013/07/july-essentials.html

  • Rachel

    Okay that Margiela model at Soul Cycle = genius.

    • Leandra Medine

      I wasn’t going to say anything but…

  • http://www.fashionsnag.com/ Fashion Snag

    Interesting as usual!

    http://www.FashionSnag.com

  • http://jessjoycej.wordpress.com/ Jessica Joyce

    My SoulCycle instructor won’t know what’s coming this week ;D

  • Hedwig Renaud

    Love the article, but Amanda Bynes is mentally ill. Although I assume that the article was written beforehand, it is not appropriate to make light of the ill.

  • Hedwig Renaud

    But the black lipstick thing- verry Pirates of the Caribbean, no?

  • Jon Cochran

    http://beaglemans.com/shop/tees/the-reed/ – Why don’t you, indeed! #beaglemans

  • Lauren at adorn la femme

    I love her flamboyant style and daring attitude! She is truly an icon of our times!!

    (=’.’=)

    Lauren at adorn la femme

  • Alicia Carolina Meichtry

    One of my friends is an amazingly talented hat designer (among other virtues, check her website if you wish at http://www.florenciatellado.com/) and she threw a hat party for her birthday last friday. She wore this.

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