Thinking of L’Wren Scott

I began my market report summing up the 2014 fall/winter collections by paraphrasing Bill Cunningham, who wisely noted, “Fashion is the armor that gets you through daily life”. Uncannily, just days before L’Wren Scott’s untimely and tragic passing, she posted online: “Fashion is the armour to survive the reality of life.”

The tributes, (by many who admittedly have had closer personal ties with her than myself) have been pouring in, but as someone who truly admired the whole package (and it was a stately one at that), I felt I wanted to add my own thoughts. L’Wren was truly unique, gifted, talented, and highly charismatic, and she really stood out, even in the world of fashion. She had a naturally regal presence; she ‘owned’ her signature persona; and she possessed innately good taste. She was strong yet fragile; old fashioned yet hip; modern yet traditional, and her finely honed aesthetic was completely un-trendy.

She knew what suited her, and she stuck with it. At well above 6 feet tall in her stocking feet, she was one of the lucky few who could live in flats, and nobody looked as good in them (certainly, nobody looked as good in mannish flat oxfords, skinny jeans, and a fitted jacket). But because she also understood the notion of ‘appropriate’, she knew when to tap into that naturally tomboy personage, and when to be all woman.

I still remember her astute observation, regarding men and fashion: “If it has a waist, they understand it”. Assuredly, she was known for her love of form fitting dresses and impeccably tailored clothes: all the better to accentuate and attenuate that long and lean frame. You might want to keep that in mind the next time you are deliberating between that shapeless frock, or something that actually shows your form.

Reportedly, her clothes, beloved by stalwart fans (which include Nicole Kidman, Ellen Barkin, Sarah Jessica Parker, Michelle Obama), are now selling out at retail. But even if you can’t swing for one of her svelte, costly designs, you might want to check out her namesake fragrance, in collaboration with renowned perfumer Ralf Schwieger, and an exclusive at Barneys New York ($195 for 100 ml). Everything about it is the embodiment of L’Wren: from the sculptural red bottle, to the original and memorable spicy chypre scent, which includes absinthe, star anise, coriander, mandarin, marigold, tuberose, jasmine, geranium, curry, clove, leather, amber, and moss.

As Maria Shriver so succinctly put it: “Thinking of L’Wren, I’m reminded of this quote: “Be kind; for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.”

I’m speechless.

Marilyn Kirschner

I am a long time fashion editor with 40+ years of experience. As senior market of Harper's Bazaar for 21 years I met and worked with every major fashion designer in the world and covered all of the collections in Paris, London, Milan and New York. I was responsible for overall content, finding and pulling in the best clothes out there, and for formulating ideas and stories.

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