One of my new inspirations is Vivienne Westwood, she has led such an extrordinary life!
I don’t usually read autobiographies/biographies as they seem as bit boring but part of me has always been intrigued by Westwood since I first heard of her and her work. When I was in my college library I noticed this book and I thought I would read something a bit different for a change. This is a long book so it took me a while to read but I was hooked from the start as I found it so interesting to read about someone elses life. It inspired me to write this post as I want to share why I think she is amazing and I think if more people knew about her and her background then they would also be inspired. This is something I would like to start on this blog so I hope it’s something that you would like to read.
Warning you in advance this will be a long post.
So let me give you a brief summary about Vivienne Westwood for those of you who don’t know who she is.
She was born on 8th April 1941 so she is 76 years old and is still producing collections! She is best known for her work in the late 1970s when her work basically shaped the look of the punk movement. Her and Mclaren owned a shop in London called SEX that sold all these crazy clothes and people would travel from all over the world to see these clothes and that’s how she started to become famous. Even when the punk movement ended she carried on designing and creating even though her work differed slightly from the crazy punk clothes. So many designers have been inspired and influenced by her work and she has been named British Designer of the year twice and was awarded the OBE.
You can always put her name into Google if you want to know more.
Westwood went through so much to get where she is today. Both good and bad things. I think this is important to know because you don’t go through life with things handed to you on a plate, you have to go out and work for things and that’s what she did. She was so passionate about fashion and expressing emotions through her work and all that passion went into her work. When reading I could really tell how much effort went into each and every piece of work that she produced and all of her time was devoted to her work.
People might not know this but she actually has two kids and I don’t think she has a very strong relationship with them now because she wasn’t around that much in their childhood because she was so into her work. From this you really get an idea about how much she loved what she did.
Punk fashion is very different from fashion in the 1970s. She created something that was so different from anyone else which shows how much she enjoyed standing out from the crowd. Even as a child she was always doing things differently from the other children and even today her work is very different from other designers. I suppose that is how you get noticed, by being different which is one reason why she rose to fame. She would have had a lot of negative comments on her work and the clothing in her shop but that never stopped her. She was so determined to produce what she wanted and to stand out that she just ignored those comments and that is so inspiring!
I love her attitude towards things because Westwood just didn’t care about what anyone else thought. She wore what she wanted, she did what she wanted and just ignored everyone else. The things she wore on a day to day basis definitely stood out compared to others and she got a lot of stares but that made her happy being in her own clothes so she did it. Everything she did, she did her way so you could say she was a bit self-centred. That is kinda to do with the fact that as a child she was very independent and did what she wanted. I love her attitude of not caring which is something that I want to adopt, so feeling confident going out in crazy clothing.
A lot of her work was produced based on what her views were on a certain topic. Punk in itself is very rebellious so it included words and phrases that rebelled society. She made her garments to make a point, so a political point or if she disagreed with something then this was something integrated in her work. I love this as it really shows how fashion is art. It’s a way of expressing yourself and if you wanna make a point about something, what’s better than making that through an outfit? (hope that makes sense.)
As you can tell she was and still is very rebellious.
The thing that I find very inspiring and what I like most is that she didn’t care for money. We live in a world that revolves around money. On the other hand Westwood has never cared about that. She produced what she wanted too no matter what the cost was. Even when she was rising to fame and had money to spare she kept on living in her tiny London apartment. The majority of the money that she received went straight into her work, which really shows that she thought there was more to life than money.
I believe her father died she was a young adult and her career took off when she was quite old and her mother wasn’t really there for her which means that she built everything from the ground. She had a lot of help from friends and people that she met along the way which helped to get her to where she is today. So I guess this shows that it’s great being independent and doing things for yourself but it’s the people that you meet along the way that help you carry on and get to where you are.
As someone who wants to go into fashion I just find her so inspiring, her confidence and courage to put herself out there and how she never had much money (at the start of her career) but was still able to produce amazing pieces of work. Furthermore how she was so devoted to doing what she loved.
I have no idea what response I will get to this post but I enjoyed writing it and I may do it again for other people that inspire me and I think it will be a cool post to read back on in a few years.
Who inspires you? Are you a fan of Vivienne Westwood?
Hope you are having a wonderful day!
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