People & VIPs

Briton Vivienne Westwood turned 80

When will she finally design for female soccers?

What was that again about these people who can't be pigeonholed? They are quickly seen as eccentric, creative, independent, sometimes perhaps even "difficult", but of course they are reluctant to compromise, preferring to set their own standards.

Vivienne Westwood, one who has always opened up new pigeonholes, recently turned 80.

What is there to say about her? Much, very much. So much that, despite being 80 years old, it seems strange that all this should have happened in one lifetime. In 1971, when she opened her first boutique in London, she already had her second husband, who supported her professionally, and two sons - she obviously didn't want to be a teacher any more and founded her successful fashion pilgrimage centre from scratch. The boutique quickly establishes itself because Westwood apparently has a certain flair for picking up and setting trends, but somehow always staying one nose ahead of the spirit of the time: First, the shop is called "Let it rock" in reference to a Chuck Berry song. The bulk of the clothing, including second-hand, was aimed at "Teds", the youthful protest movement that deliberately did not place itself below society as a subculture, relying on posh clothes and general affectation. Westwood designs teddy jackets and tight trousers, but only until the Teds become more and more associated with racism. In the spring of 1973, the shop is renamed "Too Fast To Live, Too Young To Die" and from then on focuses on rocker fashion. It wasn't long before Westwood switched the range to erotic lingerie and S&M items.

Strong woman? Westwood is definitely that. Yet down-to-earth, she lived in a modest council flat for a long time despite her success as a designer. She bundled her sparkling creativity into her first professional collection in 1981: flowing trousers and ruffled shirts - here she was inspired by seafarers, long before the "Pirates of the Caribbean" films, followed by Indian vibes and her well-known rococo borrowings, which she combined with rock elements.

Fashion has to be political? Definitely for Westwood. She wants to see strong women who dare to be fashionable and underline their personality with designs. You won't find one-size-fits-all dresses or chick chic at Westwood. Thank God for that. And the designer brings herself into social life without seeming arbitrary or pushy, although her actions certainly break the one or other conformity. Westwood's skirt flies up like Monroe's, revealing her hair, she stands up for Julian Assange and is friends with Baywatch mermaid Pamela Anderson - and yet the designer, often dubbed the "Queen of Punk", who styles her hair in all directions and always has a dry, witty quip on her lips, is dating a much younger colleague and former student. You really only know that from successful men!

Style PASS wishes the pleasantly eccentric Westwood many more good ideas and positive spirit. And we have a wish for her: Dear Vivienne, after you have already designed uniforms for an airline, now it would be your turn to design really original women's soccer shirts.


"Soccer can also be abused"

Steffi Jones - the soccer born in Frankfurt am Main in 1972 is something of an icon with her successes, including with the German national team. Things didn't go quite ideally for Jones when she took on responsibility as a coach - but that's history. Today, the smart Jones deals with completely different topics and Style PASS had the opportunity to talk to her. And: Of course, it was still about soccer!

Questions: Eva Britsch

Read more …