How 50 Shades of Grey is influencing fashion
Fifty Shades of Grey has contributed to a rather surprising interest in neck ties.
Christian Grey has bright grey eyes, a vast collection of neck ties and a fondness for tying up women in his "play room". He's also impossibly handsome, unafraid to wear a linen suit and has a hold on Anastasia Steele in a way that has had women and Bret Easton Ellis all in a fluster ever since it was published - first online and now in a trilogy.
Indeed Easton Ellis, chief purveyor of books that swell with consumerism and smut is so taken with the E.L James trilogy of domination and bondage that he's put his hand up to write the screenplay, saying that Christian and Ana would make compelling characters on the big screen. The books themselves, which began as erotic Twilight fan fiction, are rather poorly written, if amusingly so - "he's my very own Christian Grey-flavoured popsicle" is one such favourite line. However they will certainly make going to Bunnings a lot more fun. So many options! The really interesting thing is how "mummy porn" has suddenly become a proper thing. Indeed the scarlet books (though it takes a long time to get to the really saucy bits, and even then they probably won't make a regular Mills & Boon/Alan Hollingsworth reader blush too much) have had a big impact culturally, socially and, er, sartorially
Along with a reported increased in women buying kinky products from sex shops and rope from hardware stores, the rather conservative American brand Brooks Brothers are making the most of a surge of interest in their eight shades of grey neck ties.
Other websites have had fun pulling together looks worn by Ana and Christian - such as Ana's blue blazer when she first meets Christian and her black lace up suit that she wears when she really meets him - in the book and speculating on which actors should play them. For what it's worth, Bret Easton Ellis has nominated Alexander Skarsgard and Ryan Gosling as two of his picks for Christian, and Scarlett Johansson and Kristen Stewart for Ana.
Meanwhile, the agency that represents the book have appointed a licensing agency to look into Fifty Shades of Grey merchandise - from lingerie to bedding, stationery and jewelery.
And for those of us who can't decide on what to buy your beau for Christmas? Might I suggest a stylish new neck tie. I hear that they're simply all the rage.