Some of you might have noticed that I took down the Pam Hogg post from last week, where I tried on her catsuit at her store. Behind the scenes, there's been a bit of a barrage of emails between myself and Pam Hogg's people that have resulted in this.
I don't think I've ever felt quite so low in all my time blogging as the point when they requested that I take down, calling it 'bad publicity' and basically making me feel like I had no right to wear that catsuit and not deemed worthy to go into her store or touch her clothes. I had time warped back to when I was 13 years old, and gingerly went into Kenzo on Bond Street with a friend only to be asked to leave because I had accidentally dropped a plastic cuff on the carpet and frankly didn't look like a Kenzo customer. Only this time, I'm 25 years old, have had my train track braces removed and it's all happening online.
Their line is that Pam doesn't allow images of her catsuits represented in an uncontrolled environment unless you have bought one, were lent one or it was for a shoot. I must admit I thought the crappy shitty photos entirely harmless given that in a changing room of most stores, I'd happily take images of myself trying something on and post them. I fully concede though that it was my bad for posting the pictures without permission but it's the accusation of 'bad publicity' that has left my brain a bit broken.
The troubling/sinking feeling I have in the pit of my stomach and in the clotted brain, that is actually making that Kenzo incident seem paltry in comparison, is that in truth, I'm not the calibre of person Pam Hogg wants photographed in her catsuits. Below the Pixie/Peaches Geldof, Jaime Winstone/London Lite brigade, I sit on a rung of not-whippet thin, fashion geeks that don't bring any sort cachet of cool to Hogg's creations. That, I can concede and of course I understand the differences between bad and good publicity; why some designers choose not to lend to Lady Gaga and why some 'slebs will always invite free schwag. It's all a bit textbook.
I don't have illusions of grandeur whereby I think wearing someone's clothes is somewhat beneficial to a designer. It isn't. It just happens to be part and parcel of what the blog is – me prancing around and getting excited about clothes by trying things on and loving them. I just didn't think that said prancing pictures would be thought detrimental either. These feelings were further exacerbated when someone on Refinery 29 commented that I was far too unattractive and unfit to be wearing the graduate pieces for Metro. That's a more literal example. Come on, roll up, roll up, give it to me like it is. That I'm in fact not the physical archetype who should be wearing clothes I'm passionate about.
Of course the official line will always be that I broke the rules of professionalism by not asking whether I could post those Pam Hogg phone pictures (oh joy – the grey areas in blogging…) and that I made the mistake. A mistake, I might add, that I can take account for and fully apologise for, without any qualms. Sadly, the conclusion of this incident is that I'm left feeling like that silly 13 year old and that fashion cliches once again rule the day.
**EDIT** I've been at the CSM BA show all day trying to pick myself up after this whole debacle. I'm honestly OVERWHELMED by the amount of comments here and the different points that people have made, opening all kinds of cans of worms… censorship, designer's control over their product, fashion cliches, values… so much so that each one could practically be a post in itself. However, there are some points I'd like to clear up…
Mandi Lennard does NOT handle Pam Hogg's PR anymore and all Hogg's PR is done in-house! The email correspondence was between myself and someone working for Hogg and thus acting as Hogg's voice, relaying her policy. Mandi in fact is extremely blog savvy and has a rather addictive blog for colette…
I did not post this to inspire hate towards Hogg and her designs. It was something I had to get off my chest because it was tight and tears were stinging in my eyes at work and the only thing to do was type. I literally was whizzed back to feeling like I was a naughty 13 year old and was personally stung. Like an idol of yours telling you to fuck off basically.
Would rather not have any comments about Hogg's appearance, age etc if you could be so kind… I'm glad it has inspired some passionate comments but I don't want to fuel that playground direction.