But You Are In That Chair! Fashion Edition

baby jane on beach 170From time to time, Baby Jane Hudson appears here with her question and answer column, But You Are In That Chair: Baby Jane’s Advice For the Confused, Depressed and Clueless. Today’s column features special guest Anna Wintour, Editor In Chief of Vogue Magazine and the person many consider to be the most powerful in the fashion industry today. Today’s focus is on providing guidance for the fashion illiterate while also pointing out trends for summer. Welcome to the Summer Fashion! Fashion! Fashion! edition.

Dear Baby Jane & Anna,
I’m fashion challenged. I go out and buy new clothes but they never look quite right; stuff I buy doesn’t match anything in my closet and I end up wearing button down shirts with sweatpants. How can I take steps to change this?
Dowdy & Doubtful
Erie, PA

Baby Jane: Does anyone actually live in Erie, Pennsylvania?
Anna: Look, you’ve got to get a handle on this. My suggestion is to first throw out, burn or donate every stitch of clothing you own. I’m sure everything is absolutely dreadful so let’s start from scratch. Even the word sweatpants gives me hives.
Baby Jane: I totally disagree. There’s no problem here. You’re creating a problem. Just wear whatever you have and start drinking. After some whiskey, everything looks great. And pretty soon your clothing will be the least of your worries.
Anna: I might suggest working with a professional shopper. Someone who will pull clothing for you, mix it and match it. Because it sounds like you’re utterly hopeless in this area. I mean, look, you pay someone to professionally clean your teeth, fix your car, maybe decorate your house…
Baby Jane: Might I suggest a pinafore? I also like hooded sweatshirts. When it gets hot, just rip the arms out of ’em. You can never go wrong with a hood.
Anna: Don’t listen to her. She smells like rancid cottage cheese and she’s sloppy drunk.

Dear Baby Jane & Anna:
What are some summer trends I should embrace?
Faddy Fabulous
Seattle, WA

Baby Jane: Round about June 1st, I switch to gin.
Anna: The color for summer is white. White string bikinis, white sundresses, white body-con minis…
Baby Jane: Body what?
Anna: Body-con. It’s short for body-conscious Basically, dresses and other apparel that show off every single curve and ounce of muscle. I don’t think you could wear it but…
Baby Jane: Fuck you.
Anna: I’m simply stating a fact. You’re quite advanced in your years, Baby Jane. You’ve got a paunch going. Lots of rolls. Body-con is for the sleek and fabulous.
Baby Jane: Well, here are the trends I’m embracing this summer – swimsuits with built-in skirts that go to my knees, enormous hats, coconut bikini tops, sleeveless hooded sweatshirts, rhinestones on top of rhinestones…
Anna: Actually, no. Tribal is the way to go for jewelry this summer. Think Zanzibar.
Baby Jane: Isn’t that a candy?
Anna: And you can’t go wrong with a pretty dress. Something floral, lightweight…
Baby Jane: A pinafore!! With no panties.

Dear Baby Jane & Anna:
God, I hate swimming suits. So many embarrassing things have happened to me due to swimming suit malfunctions. The time my suit top came off at a water park… The time my left boob popped out out the side of an ill-fitting bikini top while I was talking to my summer crush at the beach… The time I realized my entire ass was exposed in a too-small suit bottom. Now swimming suit season is here again. Any ideas?
Atlanta, GA

Anna: This summer there are a lot of suits designed after the look of the 1940s, when there was more coverage involved.
Baby Jane: Get something with a built-in skirt. Done and done.
Anna: Sometimes skirted suits can look matronly. I, for example, have never worn a suit with a skirt. What you need is something with a reinforced top to keep your breasts from making an unwanted appearance. Perhaps you’ve been buying cheap suits. You may also want to forgo the water park. Water parks are not Vogue. Unless Mario Testino  decides he wants to photograph Kristen Stewart in the wave pool. Then it’s high fashion.
Baby Jane: It’s no secret that I love the beach. I would never let the lack of a decent suit stand in my way! Put on your sleeveless hoodie, some old skirt, pack your flask and go. Don’t forget ice cream money. And while your there, bury your invalid sister in the sand under the the hot sun and maybe let her die there.
Anna: Uh… Ruching is always nice for hiding flab. I recommend skipping the ice cream and having a Perrier instead.
Baby Jane: Rocky Road!

Dear Baby Jane & Anna,
How do you feel about tie-dye as a look for summer? I just made 15 tie-dye t-shirts and seven tie-dye sundresses out in the back yard. At the same time, I brewed up some sun tea.
Paisley Moonbeam
Crystal Cave, Kentucky

Anna: God, this is getting really boring. So provincial… Next you’ll be asking me how I feel about shorts!
Baby Jane: I’ve never been a fan of tie-dye. It’s a sloppy mess. I love the look of off-off-white. Like, the color of the armpits in a white sailor dress after years of use and then lying in an attic in front of a dusty window.
Anna: Wouldn’t that be yellow? And wouldn’t that be disgusting?
Baby Jane: Has anyone ever told you that you’re a bitch?
Anna: Ice Queen is usually the moniker.
Baby Jane: And what’s with the Louise Brooks hairdo?
Anna: It’s called having a style. A signature look.
Baby Jane: If you were my sister, I’d chain you to the bed.
Anna: Fascinating.

Dear Baby Jane & Anna,
I got asked the old question, “If you could invite five people, living or dead, to a dinner party, who would you invite?” during a job interview. I said Bette Davis, Joan Crawford, Anna Wintour, Margaret Thatcher and Imelda Marcos. I didn’t get the job, although everything had been going great up until that point. What do you think was wrong with my answer?
Tough Broad
Brooklyn, NY

Baby Jane: Duh. Everyone knows that Bette Davis was a total bitch.
Anna: Too much estrogen, don’t you think? You’d be lucky to escape the party with your eyes intact.
Baby Jane: I figured it out. No sex appeal in the entire bunch. Made you look frigid.
Anna: Excuse me, but…
Baby Jane: Oh, come on, you know it’s true.
Anna: Have you seen me in a sleeveless dress? In my wraparound sunglasses? Or pouting at fashion week in my fur coat? I ooze sex, money and power.
Baby Jane: Maybe to other women. Joan Crawford would be feeling you up during that dinner party.
Anna: This is very unfair. I’m just not a public person. I do my work, I do it well. If I were a man…
Baby Jane: Wait, are you a man?
Anna: I’m not even going to answer that. Getting back to the question, I’d keep me in, of course, and maybe add George Clooney and Chuck Barris.
Baby Jane: The dude from The Gong Show?
Anna: He wrote some very moving books as well. Get rid of Imelda, all she does is weep, and Margaret Thatcher because she is quite a bore. I’m all the Brit you really need.
Baby Jane: Add my sister and me, get rid of Anna and Bette. We’re staging our comeback!

Dear Baby Jane & Anna,
What make-up tips do you have for me this summer? Should I buy neon colors, use lip gloss, get orange blush?
World Beat
Portland, OR

Anna: We don’t say “neon” in the fashion world anymore. We say “DayGlo.” Much prettier, don’t you think? But yes, DayGlo is in for summer for eyeshadow, eye liner, nail polish. Orange is the color du jour for blush.
Baby Jane: Look, you really can’t go wrong if you just adopt the “pancake breakfast” routine. Get up at 11 a.m. Pour yourself a morning gin, slather pancake make-up on your face. Then line your eyes with the edge of a burnt cork…
Anna: I’m afraid that’s not very eco-conscious.
Baby Jane: … take a smoke break and then line your entire mouth with red lipstick. I like Burning Fire Engine Floating In a Red Hot Lava Pit by Revlon, myself. Don’t be afraid to color outside the lines.
Anna: Oh my, look at the time. I have to be getting back to my spacious office, Starbucks coffee and my minions now.
Baby Jane: Oh. Me too. I have to be getting back to… drinking and watching the soaps.
Anna: You poor dear.

baby jane curtain small for blogBaby Jane Recommends
Now that the bitch has gone back to work, I can tell you that her idea about 1940s-inspired swimming suits is right on-trend. I didn’t want her to know, but I purchased a sailor-inspired romper from Unique Vintage. If you need a suit and the stuff at Target doesn’t thrill you (hey, I do leave my house sometimes!) check out Unique’s line of vintage-inspired bathing suits. That’s right, they call them “bathing suits,” which is what they should be called. Who actually swims at the beach? Not me. I’m eating ice cream, reading Danielle Steele and watching my sister develop severe blisters around her mouth.

Long live Bettie Page and Esther Williams!