Kate Upton attends the "Charles James: Beyond Fashion" Costume Institute Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 5, 2014 in New York City. Photo: Getty
We are living in the age of the “return of the bosom”. That is, according to UK Vogue who announced this discovery with some breathiness last week. The 50% of the population in possession of a pair of bosoms are quite justified in feeling a slight tremor of surprise to learn that their bosoms had indeed gone anywhere at all.
But now is the new dawn of breasts, and not just the garden variety sort, we’re told, but proper norgs.
“The big, bouncy, bodacious sort that heaved their way through the Golden Age of Hollywood - are back,” writes Violet Henderson, on pondering Kate Upton and her boobs triumph on the cover of the June issue of Vogue, and the prime time boobs so amply displayed by Modern Family’s Sofia Vergara and the queen of all that is bosomy, Mad Men’s Christina Hendricks.
Blake Lively attends "The Captives" Premiere at the 67th Annual Cannes Film Festival on May 16, 2014 in Cannes, France. Photo: Getty
Plus, as Henderson noted, we’ve really been seeing an awful lot of breasts on the red carpet this year, quite good ones too, especially Blake Lively’s “melon-like miracles.”
Boobs have also been recognised by the fashion industry with Jamie Ellis, a UK model manager, noting that, on occasion, designers will allow worthy models – the Gisele’s, the Lara Stone’s et al - in possession of more than a handful to shoot campaigns for their labels, graciously creating space in their sample sizes.
"Recently we've been seeing designers more willing to change samples to fit a special girl,” Ellis is quoted in the article.
Christina Hendricks attends the season 7 premiere of "Mad Men" at ArcLight Cinemas on April 2, 2014 in Hollywood, California. Photo: Getty
This trend toward grudging acceptance of boobs in the fashion industry is a happy occasion. Not because it’s a slight turnaround from the fashion industry’s general distaste for them – so inconvenient, so eager to ruin clean lines, so in need of hefty support and all kinds of oomph-ups and trickery – but because it as an opportunity to celebrate busty women for being so ingenious and adaptable.
Because it’s not easy to be in possession of a set of inconvenient breasts - especially if you are also an avid follower of fashion.
Any woman who has had to suffer the humiliation of needing two sports bras instead of one, who has had a friend jokingly put your bra on their head and marvel that it fits, had someone speak to their chest and that has the ability to make any sensible outfit look either borderline obscene or soul crushingly frumpy should be reveling in fashion’s willingness to try on boobs for size.
Imagine if it lasted!
Decadently beautiful women like Christina Hendricks wouldn’t find it practically impossible to get someone to dress her for fancy award nights. Kate Upton wouldn’t be called “obvious” and or be the punch line of faux empowering for women films like The Other Woman where her main personality trait was generally agreed upon to be her breasts.
And imagine the clothing options buxom women would have if more designers (of course not all are boob-adverse), more often, put in the grunt work that is required in designing clothes for the women that have existed long before Vogue told them that they existed.
But this feeling of triumph should carry on long after boobs have been replaced with, I don’t know, the return of cargo pants worn with heels.
Because the problem with a body part as a trend is that unlike those drop crotch harem pants, you can’t very well fold up a pair of breasts and pack them away until the trend inevitably makes a comeback. They’re unlikely to be welcome at Vinnies. Or as hand me downs to your friends (though I can think of a few friends I’d happily swap with). And can you just imagine attempting to flog them off at a weekend market stall and feeling your will to live slowly drain away as people offer you 50 cents instead of a $1 for them? I’d like to think we could all get a MUCH better price than that.
No, we must fight for breasts to remain a classic item in your wardrobe, one to be worn time after time, that go with everything, in whatever combination or manner you see fit.
Whether the fashion industry is for or against.