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The Katy Perry Conundrum

Friday, August 27, 2010

I admit, while I generally don't follow popular music, sometime ago Katy Perry caught my attention. I think I was the video for "Thinking of You" that piqued my interest, in fact, I think at the time it made me angry. The video is set in the 40s and for most of it Katy is sporting garters, faux eyelashes, a Bettie Page-esque hair cut and semi period appropriate clothing. See for yourself:

I suppose I was upset at the attention her look and this video were getting at the time, like she was the first to embrace 40s glamor. I suppose I was also upset because she, as well as other stars like Christina Aguilera,  were making this look sort of mainstream and popular. While I generally don't care what other people think, I'd really rather that they didn't assume that I was a Katy or Christina wanna-be. Also, after  emergence of this video, I was not looking forward to all the Katy copy cats that I was sure would crop up, with their casual attempts at a style I worked so hard for.



So the other day when this edition of Rolling Stone showed up in the mailbox, I just rolled my eyes. Upon seeing her on the cover my boyfriend said, "I met her you know, when I was stationed in California. She dresses like you."  Best comment ever. 

I'd forget that there are people out there that don't quite get vintage style. My boyfriend, I guess is, one of these people. He understands that I love antiques and wear old clothes, but I didn't realize he didn't have a sense of the period from which I was drawing my style. I had assumed, up until now, that most people, namely men, identify my style with classic pin-ups or Marilynn Monroe as those are the only 40s-50s women they are aware of. Turns out, my assumption was wrong. Until I showed my boyfriend, he didn't even know what a pin-up girl was, outside of Playboy centerfolds. But he does know who Katy Perry is and that somehow we dress alike, and I guess that works.


I forget that for many, my interests are obscure, unknown and thus weird. I guess I owe it to stars like Perry for making the obscure popular enough for the general public to understand. And as far as the fair weather fashionistas that temporarily don the 40s look, inspired by Perry and the like, I figure the more the merrier. They'll stick around as long as this look is mainstream and I doubt they'll go to effort of searching out real vintage pieces to wear, or to the trouble of properly setting their hair. 




Besides, it's kind of fun to see what the mainstream world comes up with in terms of vintage inspired style.



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