Tuesday, July 11, 2006
"..a multicultural france..." or why i'm crushin' on boateng.
the boatengs as pictured in the telegraph
it was like love at first sight with ozwald boateng - well, his suits really. seriously, for someone like me - i get immensely geeked out about bound buttonholes and hong kong seams.
but i really like him - i mean the dude, not just the suit - even more now. ok, i may even have a slight crush on him. too bad i'd have to put another mortgage on the house to buy popzilla a boateng $uit.
i remember when boateng was tapped to design givenchy's menswear line in 2003. it was the first time that a black designer was tapped to head a french fashion house (not just ANY house, mind you, imho). however, in 2003, i was completely disillusioned and embittered by my ten dutiful & admittedly prosperous years in the fashion industry. but, i was done. i knew it was time for me to make a clean break, get closure and move on. but after hearing that news and reading his mini bios, i remembered what it was like to be youthful, energized and passionate about fashion design, and the daydreaming of a life that boateng was living - freakishly talented technically/creatively and "discovered" at 16, selling to major retailers at 18, multinational fashion icon by his 20s . needless to say, his story really resonated with me. i was actually happy for a fashion designer and honestly impressed, instead of jaded and cynical.
so, last night i was channel surfing and there he was on the sundance channel! i had NO idea he had his own reality show - House of Boateng - yeah, i don't just LIVE under a rock, two children actually sit on the rock that i live under. i quickly prayed to the reality tv gods,"please please, PLEASE tv gods, don't let him be vapid, crass and narcissistic!" and YAY! he wasn't! (but, let's face it, one show does not a series make & one reality series is not necessarily the reality of its star...)
anyway, i think i missed the beginning of last night's show and i don't think the episode i saw last night was the first of the series. but when i tuned in, boateng was discussing casting for an upcoming fashion show. he's perusing model headshots and polaroids and he's saying, "yes, i've seen him all over paris." or "no, he's just not right." and then he says (and i'm sort of paraphrasing because i was just shocked when he said it) "france is multicultural and the show has to represent that. what we really need is more asians. they're the missing key to the show." after my initial shock, i laughed 'cause c'mon, can "multicultural france" AFFORD to buy anything boateng?! ha. doubt it. but i digress...
BOATENG NEEDS ASIANS!!!!??? and you shoulda seen the SUPAH FIIIINE asian hotties he found! so, immediately, boateng scores umpteen additional brownie points with mamazilla.
then, THEN! his speechlessly beautiful russian wife, gyunel, brings their totally cute fashion forward toddlers over for what i call the "really, i was just in the neighborhood" visit. (that breezy visit you make to your SO's workplace with some random ulterior motive - you need an emergency break to avoid infanticide, the quick babysit while you shop for bras, a hump day change of scenery, potty break, need mad money, or you suspect an affair.)
so, during and following the visit, boateng takes what seems like an indulgent amount of time (even for a reality show) to talk about how much he loves his kids, his family, how important they are and how special they are, etc....he carries his kids upside down, hugs and cuddles them, he talks to them about "the boys" and the clothes and shares his work world with them. ACK!!! TOO CUTE!!!
dude, show me the mamazilla who doesn't crush on happy-go-lucky, obnoxiously-PDAing-on-their-kids popzillas?!
and then the rest of the episode is a colorful blur of fashion journalists, stylists, celebrities, clothing, accessories, models, hair, makeup, paparazzi and music, yada, yada, yada... you know, your recommended daily allowance of french luxury fashion.
yeah, it's official, i think i'm crushin' on boateng.
check out the show - thursdays on the sundance channel. :)