Sunday, December 13, 2009

maybe cintra isn't so bad after all?

Hey, loyal readers! Just wanted to take a brief moment to direct your attention (if you haven't read it already) to this great Elle interview with the NYTimes Critical Shopper Cintra Wilson.


You may remember Cintra from her controversial column on Herald Square's J.C. Penney in which she insulted everyone from middle American shoppers to the "obese" mannequins inside the store. A sampling:

"It took me a long time to find a size 2 among the racks. There are, however, abundant size 10’s, 12’s and 16’s. The dressing rooms are big, clean and well tended. I tried two fairly cute items: a modified domino-print swing dress with padded shoulders by American Living (a Ralph Lauren line created for Penney’s) and a long psychedelic muumuu of a style generally worn by Rachel Zoe. Each was around $80; each fit nicely and looked good. I didn’t buy either because I can do better for $80, but if I were a size 18, I’d have rejoiced."

Yea, yikes.
Well, old Cinta redeemed herself in this interview and came off as a clever fashion writer who recognizes why people sometimes put down fashion because of its frivolity and excess. When asked about how fashion forward she really is, Cintra remarks, "I think of fashion as a very immediate and fluid art form, so I try to look at top-shelf, couture boutiques the same way I look at art galleries - I don’t need to own the stuff to appreciate what it means, and what it makes me feel."
I've always used a similar line on my parents when they wonder why I freak over bajillion dollar couture pieces I'll never own. Most people will never own the art hanging in the Philadelphia Museum of Art, but that doesn't mean they don't enjoy paying admission to look at it all for a few hours.
Also, she's practical! When asked what she'd do with $5,000 to spend at Barneys, Cintra would, "probably end up buying something boring, sensible, indestructible thing that I thought would last the rest of my life for about 2K… and then I’d buy all my Christmas presents."
After reading this interview with her, I've come to the conclusion that Cintra's J.C. Penney debacle was just a bunch of really bad jokes from a woman very out of touch with the middle-American midset. I'm not making excuses for her, I just think she didn't fully understand the impact her snarky remarks would have on readers outside of the metro New York fashion circle. Hopefully the whole experience just taught her a very valuable lesson. Thoughts?

On an unrelated note, I'd like to direct you all to Pandora Radio's Lady Gaga station. It's been a lifesaver during my weekly B&N cafe homework sessions.

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