From Jess Hutchison, my visual arts idol:
For me, an item of clothing or an outfit is Hiddy-Pretty when it defies the known laws of taste (tasteful color, silhouette, length, etc), and yet still works and is beautiful… It’s the Jolie-Laide of style.
…when it comes to right here, right now, we have all a fairly consistent idea of what’s considered tasteful and appropriate (for our age, gender, etc.) by our culture, whether or not we agree with it. And Hiddy-Pretty is about tweaking and bending that in somewhat audacious ways and basically saying ‘fuck it, I’m wearing what I want, and I look GOOD!’.
Yolandi Visser from the group Die Antwoord is a great example of what Jess is talking about:
Jess tells me that:
In particular, I like that wearing something Hiddy-Pretty can remove the question of ‘is this going to make me look sexy and/or attractive?’ and replace it with ‘is this going to make me look interesting?’
The late 60s/early 70s thing (also on Mad Men at the moment) is RIPE for Hiddy-Pretty inspriation. Lots of garish colors, odd hairstyles, gold costume jewelry… it’s like culture (all the way from haute couture to Sears) decided that we’re all just gonna look KEE-RAZY for a few years.
…Hiddy-Pretty is a choice, like any other choice we make about what we wear, you can do it with high-end couture or thrifted vintage, and it’s about looking good while being in questionable taste. It’s the BEST!
And the funny thing is, people ALWAYS seem to respond positively when I wear something that’s odd. There’s just something inherently glamorous in not giving a fuck.
Well said Jess! Sounds like time for a Hiddy-Pretty party to me!