Vivienne Westwood - my (punk) Queen

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Today´s article is dedicated to one of the biggest celebrities of the fashion industry - Vivienne Westwood. She is a woman, who really got me. Except for her great ideas, sophisticated cuts and an effort to be original, she caught my attention because of her personality. She has got incredibly big heart and she is not greedy, what seems not that common in today´s consumerist world. She sees her talent like an opportunity to learn not only herself but mainly teach us what really defines the fashion. Is it celebrity on the red carpet? Overpriced shopping in the most luxurious boutiques? Self  confidence and indifference? Thanks to Vivienne we can be more sensitive and better people. In the following lines I will convince you that Vivienne is not only that " sweet 74 years old grandmother"!


Dnešný článok je venovaný jednej z najväčších osobností módneho priemyslu -Vivienne Westwood.  Je to žena, ktorej som úplne podľahla. Okrem skvelých nápadov, premyslených strihov a snahy byť originálnou si ma získala aj svojou povahou. Má neskutočne veľké srdce a nie je chamtivá, čo sa v dnešnom konzumnom svete tak často nevidí. Svoj talent vníma ako príležitosť naučiť nielen seba ale aj predovšetkým nás tomu, čo vlastne módu definuje. Je to celebrita na červenom koberci? Predražené nákupy v najluxusnejších butikoch? Sebavedomosť a  klapky na očiach? 
Vďaka Vivienne môžme byť nielen vnímavejšími, ale aj lepšími ľuďmi. V nasledujúcich riadkoch vás presvedčím o tom, že Vivienne nie je len "tá milá 74 ročná babička"!




She was born on april 8th 1941 to her mother Dora and father Gordon Swire. She spent her childhood in Derbyshire. During her life she had lots of boyfriends, but when she was 21 , she decided to marry Derek Westwood, after whom she has a surname till today. But this marriage was not succesfull, because Vivienne had a feeling, that they do not have much in common. She wanted to have a man, who will be boosting her and from who she can learn more about fashion. After 3 years she decided to divorce with Derek and leave with their son Ben.

Narodila sa 8.4. 1941 mame Dore a otcovi Gordonovi Swireovi. Svoje detstvo prežila v Derbyshire. Počas svojho života mala veľa lások, no už ako 21 ročná sa rozhodla vydať za Dereka Westwooda, 
podľa ktorého si dodnes nechala priezvisko. Manželstvo však nebolo úspešné, pretože Vivienne mala pocit, že toho nemajú veľa spoločného. Chcela mať pri sebe muža, ktorý bude jej hnacím motorom a od ktorého sa bude mať aj v oblasti módy čo učiť. Po troch rokoch sa rozhodla rozviesť a aj so spoločným synom Benom od Dereka odísť. 



When she met Malcolm Edwardson/ Mclaren (a friend of her brother Gordon), her life has totally changed. Malcolm was a strange man, but despite of this fact, Vivienne admired him, because he was very smart and he always exactly knew, what will be the next trend. Her interest in him has transformed  into love and so they became a couple. Vivienne has finally found a man, who was on the same wave with her. She did not mind that they lived in a caravan, they did not have what to eat or that she often felt the unrequited love -  in its own way Malcolm helped her to show to the world what skills she has. Together they invented the punk and except for establishing the stylish shop on the King´s Road 430 named Let It Rock (later Too Fast to Live Too Young to Die; Sex; Seditionaries), which exists till today, they are also known as a big fashion revolutionaries. Vivienne made not secret of the fact that she designed a clothes, which hided the body, but proudly uncovered the soul (many times with a great deal of sexuality).

Keď stretla Malcolma Edwardsona/ Mclarena (kamaráta jej brata Gordona), jej život sa od základov zmenil. Malcom bol veľký čudák, no Vivienne ho aj najpriek tomu obdivovala, pretože bol veľmi sčítaný a vždy presne vedel, čo bude v trende. Jej záujem prerástol v lásku a tak sa dali s Malcolmom dokopy. Vivienne konečne našla človeka, ktorý bol s ňou na jednej vlne. Neprekážalo jej, že bývali v karavane, nemali čo poriadne do úst alebo že často necítila opätovanú lásku - Malcolm jej svojim spôsobom pomohol k tomu, aby dokázala svetu, čo sa v nej skrýva. Spoločne dali život punku a okrem štýlového obchodu na King´s Road 430 s názvom Let It Rock (neskôr Too Fast to Live Too Young to Die; Sex; Seditionaries), ktorý tam je dodnes sa vo svete zapísali ako veľkí módni revolucionári. Vivienne sa netajila s návrhmi oblečenia, ktoré síce zakrývali telo ale hrdo odkrývali dušu (často krát s veľkou dávkou sexuality). 













Except for the crazy period of her life together with Malcolm, and his discovery of The Sex Pistols music band, Vivienne also found herself  in the role of  the songwriter or teacher. What always was and still is the part of her life is sewing and fashion. She always liked learning not only herself but also teaching other people and studying the history of clothes, as well. So, these two aspects were the impulse for the documentary named Painted Ladies, which she made with her brother Gordon. In this multipart documentary  Vivienne is trying to show you the history of fashion, understand the historical cuts and she is trying to uncover the hidden symbols with big enjoyment, not only of clothes but also of the art and paintings. In this documentary you can see her in the role of  teacher and her students from Vienna, where one of her student, younger than her by 25 years (Andreas Kronthaler) was fallen in love with her so much, that they are together till today.


Okrem jej bláznivej časti života spoločne s Malcolmom a jeho objavenia skupiny The Sex Pistols sa Vivienne ocitla aj v roli textárky či učiteľky. Čo však vždy bolo a aj je súčasťou jej života je šitie a móda. Učiť nielen seba ale aj iných ju vždy bavilo a študovanie histórie odievania taktiež. Z týchto dvoch aspektov sa zrodil skvelý dokument ktorý natočila so svojim bratom Gordonom s názvom Painted Ladies. V tomto niekoľko dielnom dokumente sa nás snaží vtiahnuť do histórie módy, osvojiť si historické strihy a s veľkou radosťou sa nám snaží odhaliť skryté symboliky nielen v oblečení ale aj v umení a teda v obrazoch. Na záberoch tohto dokumentu môžte vidieť aj jej rolu učiteľky a jej žiakov z Viedne, kde sa jeden jej žiak mladší o 25 rokov ( Andreas Kronthaler) do nej zamiloval natoľko, že sú spolu dodnes.


If I had to describe Vivienne´s whole life, it would be a very long article. She has experienced a lot during 74 years of her life. She felt what it is like to fall down to the bottom, not only in a partnership but also in a career life; she felt what it is like, when your loved one betrayed you or how does it feel, when Vogue fashion magazine refuses you, respectively when you get more support from abroad than at home... I would like to point out, that she was alone at all for everything. For example, she personally sewed and produced t-shirts from her first shop named Let It Rock (which she had with Malcolm). She practised all of the dying and cutting techniques at home and her two sons often remember the "Mum´s t-shirts dying in the kitchen sink" or the sewing under the candlelight.  Vivienne did not give up and she stood up on her feet again. And the world finally began to appreciate her. Several times she won the British Fashion Council award  "Designer of the Year", she became an honorary member of  the  Royal College of Art, she received the Order of the British Empire, she won the award from the Institute of Contemporary Arts for outstanding contribution to the modern culture, and of course I can not forget the Queen´s Award for Export), she also received a title of Lady from the Queen and she also won the award from Royal College of Art for a fashion service. Today she owns great fashion brand, which hides not only her personal story but also her hard work.



Keby som mala popísať celý život Vivienne, bol by to pekne dlhý článok. Počas svojich 74 rokov života toho zažila dosť. Pocítila aké to je, padnúť na úplné dno nielen v partnerskom ale aj v kariérnom živote; pocítila aké to je, keď vás blízky človek zradí alebo aký je to pocit, keď vás odmietne časopis Vogue, respektívne keď dostanete väčšiu podporu v zahraničí ako doma... Podotýkam, že na všetko bola sama. Napríklad tričká z jej prvého obchodu Let It Rock ( ktorý mala spolu ešte s Malcolmom) vyrábala a šila vlastnoručne. Všetky farbiarske a strihacie techniky vykonávala u seba doma a jej dvaja synovia si často spomenú na "mamine farbenie tričiek v kuchynskom umývadle" či na šitie pri sviečkach. Vivienne sa však nevzdávala a opäť sa postavila na nohy. A svet si ju začal konečne vážiť. Niekoľko krát získala od British Fashion council ocenenie "Návrhárka Roku", stala sa čestnou členkou Royal College of Art, získala Rád britského impéria, ďalej získala ocenenie Institute of Contemporary Arts za výnimočné prispenie k modernej kultúre, nemôžem zabudnúť ani na Kráľovské ocenenie za export (Queen´s Award for Export), ďalej od kráľovny získala titul Dámy a v neposlednom rade získala vyznamenanie od Royal College of Art za službu móde.  Dnes vlastní skvelú módnu značku, za ktorou sa skrýva nielen jej osobný príbeh ale aj tvrdá práca.




Except for fashion, art, freedom and cultural education, Vivienne enriched this world by her others doings. I really like about her that she is responsive and not indifferent to the world around us. She decided to realize an environment revolution and she succesfully declared the war to the consumerist world and indifference. With her projects Climate Revolution, Save the Arctic and Save the Rainforest she decided to point out the importance of the environment and of such a little time, that remains to us, if we do not wake up early. Her yearly fashion exhibition named Chaos to Couture in Metropolitan museum of New York is for all the fashion lovers, who have an opportunity to see her work since seventies to the present. In her opinion, a man should not live a consumerist life and he should buy just that, what he really needs (for example she borrows the clothes from her fashion shows). 


Okrem módy, umenia, slobody a kultúrneho vzdelania však Vivienne tento svet obohatila aj o svoje ďalšie skutky. Veľmi sa mi na nej páči, že je to vnímavá žena a svet okolo nás jej nieje ľahostajný. Revolúciu sa rozhodla uskutočniť aj v otázke nášho životného prostredia a úspešne vyhlásila vojnu konzumnému svetu a ľahostajnosti. Svojimi projektami Climate Revolution, Save the Arctic a Save the Rainforest sa rozhodla poukázať na dôležitosť životného prostredia a na málo času, ktorý nám zostáva, ak sa včas nezobudíme. Jej každoročná výstava módy  s názvom Zmätok v luxuse (Chaos to Couture) v Metropolitnom múzeu v New Yorku láka všetkých nadšencov módy, ktorí majú možnosť vidieť jej tvorbu od sedemdesiatych rokov až po súčasnosť. Taktiež zastáva názor, že by človek nemal žiť konzumným životom a kúpiť si naozaj len to, čo potrebuje( ona sama si napríklad oblečenie požičiava zo svojich prehliadok). 












It is hard to answer the question what specifically I love about Vivienne. Thanks to her authorized biography, which she wrote along with Ian Kelly, I had an opportunity to see her entire life. It was incredible. When I  always see a piece by Vivienne, I also see her own story being connected to the specifically used cut, fabric, design or colour. And I can tell that this is the exact reason, why I love Vivienne that much. She creates a fashion, which speaks, teaches and hides a specific symbol. There is nothing more beautiful than when a fashion designer honors you with an invitation to his own life by every purchase of his clothes! 

And, of course, I love her handbags, accessories, British look and tartan. In all ways!



Je ťažké odpovedať na otázku, čím konkrétnym ma Vivienne tak uchvátila. Vďaka jej autorizovanému životopisu, ktorý napísala spoločne s Ianom Kellym som mala možnosť nahliadnuť do jej celého života. Bolo to neskutočné. Vždy, keď vidím nejaký kúsok od Vivienne, vidím taktiež aj jej osobný príbeh viažuci sa na ten konkrétny použitý strih, látku, dizajn či farbu. A dalo by sa povedať, že toto je to, čím si ma Vivienne dostala. Tvorí totiž módu, ktorá rozpráva, učí a ktorá v sebe ukrýva určitú symboliku. Nie je nič krajšie, ako keď vás módny návrhár poctí tým, že pri kúpe jediného jeho kusu oblečenia vás ochotne pozve do svojho života!


A samozrejme, milujem jej kabelky, doplnky, britský look a tartan. Na všetky spôsoby!

































2 comments

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