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Cameron Silver’s Decades

Cameron Silver’s Decades
By Brianna Melanson


In order to fully comprehend today’s fashion, one must understand and study fashion’s history. As Cameron Silver says, “You can’t be modern until you know your vintage.” That is the argument in Silver’s book Decades: A Century of Fashion which has already become a classic coffee table book and required read since its release in 2012. Silver has built his name through his own boutique Decades in Los Angeles and as Fashion Director at H Halston at Dillards and the QVC exclusive brand H by Halston.

As you can imagine, the writing of Cameron Silver’s intelligent and beautiful book was a challenge. He states, “Several years went into the writing of the book and the research of the photography. My publisher wanted to create a perennial, which is why this book is going into its third printing.” Each chapter is a different decade of the 20th Century that discusses the historic relevance and fashion icons, and showcases the modern aspects of the time. For instance the 1920s chapter jumps into Coco Chanel and the 1960s chapter will comment on the Space Age. Cameron claims his aesthetic is characteristic of the 1970s. All of the essays are thought provoking and include intriguing contributions from or interviews with celebrities, fashion editors and famous designers. Not to mention the stunning photography and iconic fashion pieces that Cameron shows can still be worn today. He wants to change the reader’s perspective and show them how “there is nothing new in fashion.” Modern fashion is simply reviving the old in a different way. There is a wealth of information in his book that every fashionista should know if they want to truly embody a brilliant fashion designer or fashion savvy individual.

Like his thesis, his boutique Decades, now 20 years old, only sells vintage that looks current and that is carefully curated from people with vivid stories. It is one of Cameron’s favorite things to be able to tell shoppers stories of the pieces they find and see how the shopper brings the clothing back to life when they try it on. Whether it is 10 or 100 years old, you would still look in style right now. The shop has both authentic vintage and what Cameron calls Neo-vintage, such as Alexander McQueen, clothing that is no more than 10 years old and already a classic.

Though following trends are fun, they are out of style before you know it. Cameron is a firm believer in investing in a wardrobe that’s timeless. For spring, Cameron reveals, “I think we’re finally having a backlash on disposable fashion.” We won’t see as many clothes that we will regret wearing a year later. You can save for quality pieces that you will never get sick of. He adds, “In a world where clothes are overly acceptable or rentable, it’s nice to own things that you can rely on for decades.” As Fashion Director of the Halston brands, Cameron is a fan of their essentials line, especially the T-shirts which are comfortable stand-alone pieces that can be worn often. Cameron says, “Halston created an everlasting, elegant way of dressing which is what we’re continuing to do at a more affordable price point. It’s contemporary, it doesn’t look retro, but we’re not doing things that you’re over with already.” However, Silver says we are also in a “liberated” fashion era where it is now acceptable to wear day fabrics at night and vice versa. Cameron personally likes that fashion is becoming seasonless. It’s okay to wear bright colors in the gloomy winter or whenever you feel like it. Cameron stresses the significance of color. Add a pop of color in your shoes if you’re wearing all black. If you are to buy anything vintage, let it be a scarf which can instantly turn a plain outfit fabulous. Every woman can rock a scarf and there is no specific season to wear them. This spring’s fashion, should still be wearable next spring and springs to come.

At Cameron’s recent Decades book signing at Capitol in Charlotte, he sold a woman a Scaasi strapless blue sequin dress she look phenomenal in. She had no where in particular to wear it to, but when you find something that looks and feels great, buy it and find a place for it later. While he has had many memorable red carpet gowns for celebrities, he adores being able to help real women find red carpet worthy pieces. He was extremely impressed with Charlotte’s sophisticated, unsafe fashion. We greatly appreciate this compliment from the “king of vintage.” Perhaps we are a step ahead in understanding that the history of fashion is our guide to modern fashion. Cameron will not be writing another coffee table book for awhile, but he has other writing projects in mind that we can get excited about.

Luxe Lifestyle Magazine

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