Sunday, May 1, 2011

TV Style/Review: Dresscue Me

I'm not sure how I stumbled across Dresscue Me - it's pretty deep cable (channel 286 on directv) and at first glance, it doesn't seem to fit with the other shows on Planet Green. A vintage fashion reality show on the same network as Whale Wars and various renovation shows?

But Dresscue Me establishes its place in the Planet Green ethos early on in the episode, Shareen Mitchell, owner and designer for Shareen Vintage, is doing a collection of upcycled "bat-wing tops" (a phrase that is repeated endlessly), made from those crinkly Indian-print skirts everyone wore in the 90s. To fill the order, Shareen and an assistant visit this mountain of discarded clothing:
This scene really illustrates the green aspect of vintage dressing and the finished product shows how creativity can help eliminate all that wasted clothing.
Not my style, but I know a lot of girls who would love it.
The time we spend in the shop make up the best parts of the episode. Shareen Mitchell, whose LA-ness made my eyes roll a bit, is nevertheless very talented at matching the girl to the dress. The dress try-on parts of the episode really won me over.
Shareen Vintage has its celebrity clients (Nylon tells me that Kirsten Dunst shops there) and I was so excited to see Cat Deeley on my TV! I do miss her in between SYTYCD seasons. There's a charming dress try-on sequence with lots of Cat laughing joyously and ooo-ing over the fab dresses. We even get to see her try on a dress she wore on the show last season!
The other client highlighted in the episode was a gal who was going to be in a wedding party. Shareen finds a GORGEOUS 50s seafoam-green wiggle dress that the girl loves. Shareen Vintage alters the dress and when the girl comes to pick it up, she brings her friend...who ruins everything. It's interesting to watch the girl deflate as her friend stares at the dress and dismisses it as "" She tries several other dresses that the friend dislikes and Shareen diagnoses the problem: "Do you wear vintage?" "No." And it all makes sense - to a lot of people, wearing vintage will always look either overdone or costume. Sometimes it's hard out there for a vintage-loving girl (she ended up looking cute in a tropical floral dress).
 Unfortunately, the reality show construct just can't help itself and we're treated to a few "Shareen is the fashion boss from hell" scenes before the fashion line launch party. I wish this trope would go away: everyone gets stressed at their job, especially when they have a big event or project. Just because this person's job is in fashion does not automatically make them Miranda Priestley!

Beside that nod to reality tv, Dresscue Me is an enjoyable way to spend a half hour in the afternoon. More vintage dress fashion show, please!