I clearly remember the first time I ever saw a picture of Twiggy. I was thirteen years old and my history class was looking through a bunch of magazine articles about the 1960’s. I was paying close attention during this class, because only a few months earlier my obsession with all things from the 60’s had blossomed after a visit to a costume museum. I was fascinated with the music, the films and the events from the 60’s, but more than anything else, I was drawn to 60’s fashion. As I flipped through a book about this monumental decade, the pages fluttered open to rest on a page of a strikingly beautiful woman. She was stick-thin, with a tomboyish haircut and the heaviest eyelashes I had ever seen. She was wearing a pair of coloured tights, a micro-mini dress and flat silver shoes. I was instantly entranced.
I’ve always been very slim and quite short. My physical proportions made it tricky for me growing up in the 90’s and noughties, when big breasts and tall frames were all the rage. I felt pretty inadequate when most of the models and actresses of my teen years were significantly more buxom than I. That’s part of the reason that I was so blown away when I saw Twiggy. As a thirteen-year-old girl, my own figure wasn’t too far removed from Twiggy’s waif-like physique. She shared my lack of breasts and hips, and yet she looked amazing. Her look was so striking that you couldn’t help but stare at her. For me, Twiggy gave me a wee bit of confidence that perhaps my surfboard-shaped figure, which didn’t gel with the preferred shape of the time, might still be something beautiful.
As I got older, I began to experiment more and more with fashions from the 1960’s. The mod look suits me well, because I have the flat-chested figure to pull it off. That first glimpse of Twiggy was what gave me the push to start experimenting with clothing from one of my favourite eras in fashion. 60’s fashion has left an indelible imprint on my personal style. I am a huge fan of graphic prints, shoulder-duster earrings and opaque tights. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve dabbled in dramatic eye makeup, and have a penchant for extreme mascaras. The mod fashion which Twiggy championed has become a prominent feature in my wardrobe, and is one of the styles that I feel happiest in.
I have that initial picture of Twiggy to thank for introducing me to one of my favourite fashion eras. It’s true that I have many fashion icons from the 1960’s- Janis Joplin, Edie Sedgewick, Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe- and that each of these icons has influenced my style in different ways. I wouldn’t say that Twiggy has influenced my personal style any more heavily than any of these women, but she was the first from this era to work her inspiration on me, and for that reason, she holds a special place in my heart.