OddBod & The City: Definition Of A Lady
When I was told I would be expected to gear my article for fashion for this edition, I have to admit my heart sank. A flurry of messages ensued where I tried to explain why I really didn’t have anything to contribute to a fashion edition. For those who don’t know, My nickname Aunt Harriet was given to me because I have always dressed like a geriatric church-going lady.
My fashion has always been better suited to English countryside living, and thrift shopping is my jam. Then one of my favourite actresses on the planet died last week—Dame Angela Lansbury. I got many a condolence message because my nearest and dearest knew I would take her loss very personally.
To be honest, I never delved much into her personal life, but I was obsessed with a fictional character she portrayed for 12 years; Jessica Fletcher from the hit show Murder She Wrote. It’s worth mentioning that Dame Angela was cast in this role at 58.
Perhaps that is why everything about the show’s fashion was ICONIC for me. Her character wardrobe was a perfect reflection of the role. A widowed secondary school teacher bravely embarks on a second act of life, takes a stab at mystery writing and surprisingly becomes a world-renowned author.
Next comes jet setting to far-flung corners of the world, obligatory crime-solving, exotic locations and fabulous friends. In her downtime, she was cosied up in the fictional Cabot Cove, an idyllic seaside fishing town in Maine where her home was all things genteel and comforting.
My friend Poopannah (it’s a nickname with an epic origin story) has decided that she is going as Jessica Fletcher
for Halloween this year. What would it take to pull it off? On the surface, her outfits may seem boring and unassuming, but that absolutely means you missed the point.
She was never not perfectly put together for any occasion, be it an ambassador’s ball, a boat party, a book launch, or romping around some billionaire’s country estate. Think perfectly fitted pantsuits, the obligatory but discreet eighties shoulder pads, and sensible shoes in the best Italian leather (one couldn’t go, amateur sleuthing and chasing bad guys in sky-high red bottom heels, after all).
The jewellery was made up of the classics: great pearls and yummy gold sets, and she was never too far from a solid
brooch accent. Her handbags were the stuff my dreams were made of—cartoon grandmas with cute little structured
numbers hanging off their forearms (all the better to whack you over the head with) have always been my inspiration.
She did not shy away from colours, patterns or bold embellishments. Stylish, ladylike and understated is the goal. She loved a midi-length pencil skirt and there wasn’t a pussy bow blouse, trench coat or matching pyjamas and dressing gown set she didn’t pull off.
If her clothes talked, they would tell you, “here stands a woman of substance who knows her worth and has NOTHING to prove to you”. What’s not to admire about that? All hail the granny-chic queen. May she rest in peace.
Odunayo Ogunbiyi is an ex pharmacist with a passion for food and pampering. Writing about her exploits wherever in the world she may find herself is just her way of staying sane in this zany world.