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Vivienne Westwood; or, Pamela Does Paris

You arrive in the Place Vendome - it's calm, civilized, Cartier sits on one side, Chanel on the other and The Ritz holds court in the middle. Suddenly, you hear a slight roar and land in a fashion mosh pit. Vivienne Westwood's Gold Label show is about to begin. It's being shown in a building with one glass wall which means all of Paris is sticking their face up against the glass to get a good look. They might be looking for Kate Hudson, whose name is prominently placed front row. But the Hollywood starlet never shows and the crowds make do with Beth Ditto and Georgia May Jagger. The program notes advise, "I always hijack my fashion shows to talk about culture and politics. The collection is called +5°. Somewhere between 400 ppm and 500ppm of CO2 in the atmosphere the earth will settle down to a new equilibrium of 5° hotter than now. Our luscious comfortable world will be gone. What is left will support hopefully 1/5 of the population. We must plan...How do we prepare for a world to help survivors; just in case there is time to affect this irreversible event, what can we do?" Then Pamela Anderson storms down the runway, swinging her blond locks and twirling for the pit in a swept up pink tutu and one wonders, "Really Vivienne?" The Fall 09 collection is 100% Westwood, stripes and glitter over silks and wools pulled and twisted every which way. Colorful socks and printed tights emerge from hefty platforms. There are crystal headbands and violins around the neck. People clap and laugh, Pam still dances, Eliza Cummings closes and even though Vivienne's show notes go on to demand, "Buy Less!" you want to buy every single thing you just saw - even if you can really only wear it in a dream world.

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