The Women's Room was out to lunch this week with a couple of very stylish ladies, Antonia and Tanya from Proportions London. They are both at the cutting edge of fashion, designing and selling mannequins to the biggest fashion retailers around the globe, so have a keen eye on how to put looks together and how to dress a woman's shape.
Tanya is the creative head and every time we meet she wears something that I want. This time it was a pair of All Saints white distressed leather lace up boots, which she bought recently for £160. We love them worn over her skinny jeans and balanced with a white top half. The boots are to be carried over to the autumn range too, she thinks and can be found on the website in a canvas and leather trim (currently in the sale at £125) and black canvas. Her white super-long sleeved T shirt (which she claims is highly useful) is from COS and her white scarf is 'A bit of linen fabric I had lying around"…
Tanya gets frustrated by the fit and shape of a lot of high street retail clothes and says its rare for her not to customise her buys, slimming down the cuffs of her T shirts so she can wear them long or improving the fit of an armhole or neckline. The last time I saw her she was wearing a long silk satin camisole that she had converted from a vintage slip. She makes me want to rediscover my needlework box.
Antonia was wearing the sharpest of white shirts, crisp thick cotton with pressed pintucks. I guessed it was Burberry but no, "M&S a few seasons ago" she admitted, "people always comment on it".
We talked about older women and mannequins and Tanya says she would love to do a beautiful aspirational older mannequin along the lines of Carmen Dell'Orifice, but fears most retailers would not buy it. She also commented that she was fed up with the whole process of thinking about age and image. "I'm thinking of telling everyone I'm twenty years older than I am, so people are amazed at how I look" she states, "Wouldn't that be fun?"