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The second I saw the images from Loewe’s SS 2024 campaign my body bolted upright because finally, finally, fashion is paying attention. I don’t recall anything quite like it. I’ve mourned the apathy in fashion lately, the lack of something that can excite and entice the consumers to make us invest in it once more… well it seems Loewe heard my anguish and decided to do something about it.
Dame Maggie Smith, aka Professor McGonagall, aka The Dowager Countess, is one in a line-up of several others for Loewe’s spring-summer campaign for 2024 and I have never wanted to support a brand more. I love the campaign for what it does; tapping into that very British essence of charm. This is your nan’s on a Sunday afternoon for roast in her terraced house where you have taken this picture in her back garden. She is dressed in her Sunday best; the fur coat you hope to inherit someday, one of her prized possessions and the bag that holds the tenner she will likely gift you with before you leave because in her opinion your parents do not spoil you enough. It certainly also holds her favourite scent and shade of rouge. I love how soft and cheeky she looks; she is the only one in the family allowed to get away with back chat because no one will call her out on it; no one ever could. I love how tightly shot the image below with the puzzle bag is; most of us grew up in a house like that, on a row of identical terraced boxed houses, I even know how awkward that space is as you stand to take her picture possibly right next to the wheelie bins.
I most adore how she looks like she used to be a fast girl back in her heyday; she is up for something stiffer than a glass of sherry. She drinks her Guinness from the bottle like my nan did, and in that way, I love how she reminds me of my own grandmother who drank her Guinness from the bottle, the life she lived before we came to know her is typified in the smile lines that holds a life time memories and an overflow of laughter. That twinkle in her eyes says she is up for more than just the best kind of trouble, and you know in your youth, you couldn’t keep up with her. That smirk on her face tells of the many stories not suitable for our ears, but she’ll tell us outside of the earshot of our parents.
I love the depths of life captured here, the fullness of it; it is the exact way I always want to remember her; singular in her presence, peerless in her greatness and absolutely phenomenal. Icon is a tepid word to describe her, because it is so over used, but it applies here, in the fullness of its meaning. And that particular quirk in her smile is the look of your nan who needs you and your parents to leave, because she has to hit the town with the girlies at the bingo; she has lived a life and continues to do so.