Friday, 18 November 2016
Five style lessons I've learned from The Avengers
As I'm still obsessed with the outfits Linda Thorson wears as Tara King, I thought I'd share some fashion tips gleaned during my watchings...
Always wear trousers for arse-kicking
Right from Cathy Gale onwards, whenever an Avenging lady appears in trousers, fights break out. Luckily they're the perfect garment for kicking, jumping and throwing one's way to victory. Cathy wore leather, but Emma, despite the modern perception of her outfits, favoured more modern crimplene. Many people may sneer at synthetic fibres, but they're hardwearing and it's a lot easier to wash blood out of nylon than cotton after an afternoon thumping villains.
Live life in colour
Purple and yellow. Cobalt and fuschsia. Royal and mustard. If it sounds wrong, it's probably right. No muddy, murky tones – unless you are actually ponking around in the jungle, when even khaki has its place. But generally speaking, make your fashion world a bright one.
Remember boots, boots, kinky boots
Honor Blackman and Patrick MacNee sang about them, and all the Avenging ladies wore them at some point. (Like trousers, boots come in handy when you're opening a can of Whup-Ass. Shoes can fly off in a fight, but boots stay firmly attached to your feet.) Chelsea boots with trousers, knee boots with mini-skirts, and spike-heeled black leather when the rest of your clothes are a corset, snake and spiky collar. Ay caramba!
Matchy-matchy isn't just for ladies
The Avengers provide good pointers for both genders – witness the gentlemanly perfection from Mr Steed here. Brown suit, brown bowler. Grey suit, grey bowler. Even his umbrellas match. In the gaudy world of the Avengers, Steed stands out as an elegant pillar of calm.
Frumpy is a matter of attitude
Steed's mono-neutral outfits form a frame from which a sparkling and entertaining personality can shine forth. Cathy Gale's chic cannot be buried by a beige suit, nor Tara's sparkle throttled by a high-necked pussybow. The right attitude can make any outfit work. Unless you are actually deathly dull, in which case all the sequins in the world won't do you an ounce of good. Best not to be boring, really.
Do any old TV programmes inspire you, or do you find modern vintage-set ones fuel your imagination more?