In 2001 I bought a copy of Victoria Beckham’s autobiography Learning To Fly. I’d never been a particularly passionate spice girl but I’d always been fascinated by the posh one in the sleek black dress. And, to my surprise, the book was good. Like, really good. Very funny, very thoughtful, self-deprecating and well-written. It was clear throughout this woman just got it. She was life-savvy and business-clever. When I preached my revelation to others though, they laughed me off. Ha! They said. That silly girl who poses in a girl band? She can’t possibly be interesting and clever! She’s a by-product of pop culture. A soon-to be has-been.
So, oh how I’ve relished in watching Victoria Beckham rise since then. Last year, the fashion mogul celebrated a decade of her eponymous label. A decade designing chic wears for chic women. Before she helmed her own ateliers, Beckham’s image was a round-the-clock spruik for labels like Roland Mouret and Christopher Bailey’s Burberry; and she developed a following accordingly. Victoria Beckham, the label was simply a natural progression.
Overnight, her autumn winter show took place. Prior the show, the flurry of excitement was real as Britain’s other Royal family arrived (David, Brooklyn, Cruz, Romeo and Harper). A million memes were spawned when Harper-with-the-bob was seated next to Anna-with-the-bob. And all this before nary a runway look had emerged.
Under the studious arches of Tate Britain, Beckham’s collection solidified her savvy. Immediately apparent was the wearable nature of each and every piece. Wide-checked skirt-suits, languid-necked blouses and tunics in Valentine red all worked solidly beside her preppy-equine ensembles that used herringbone coats and argyle sweaters to their stylish advantage. Neon-bright footwear gate-crashed a few looks, whether through toe-peeping boots or pumps, cleverly stamping today’s date onto what otherwise would have been classic ensembles. Beckham’s fleshing out of another 90s favourite, mohair, via knee-length skirts and matching sweaters was subtly motivating (especially for this writer). Finally, trousers of a marginally-flared but definitely-elongated cut were an anticipated piece. Beckham has been teasing this signature look via her own street style for months, so finally they are public fodder.
Beckham leaves social and political narrative to others when it comes to fashion. She is the constant quest of gossip and speculation, so it’s no wonder her label is a devout deviation. Each look is a business decision for her devoted customer. Elegant styling, charming silhouettes and well-constructed garments that, quite frankly, just look good. She knows what they want, she always has.