Over the past few decades, fashions have fluctuated, hemlines have risen and fallen and black has repeatedly been declared the new black, but one thing has remained in style – the power suit. From the infamous Helmut Newton Le Smoking shot taken in 1975, the credibility and strength of a woman in tailoring has been a constant on catwalks and in boardrooms, and this is a trend set to continue into A/W13, with the AnOther Lovers voting this amazing 3.1 Phillip Lim suit, as Loved by AnOther's Fashion Editor Nell Kalonji, the most Loved of the week.
Excess so often breeds a yearning for order, and it is therefore totally understandable that one of the definitive sartorial movements to emerge from the poodle permed, platformed shod, rainbow flared madness of the seventies was the concept of power dressing; slick cuts and sharp tailoring for men and women who wanted to be taken seriously and get ahead in business. John T. Molloy wrote the textbooks with his bestsellers Dress for Success (1975) and The Woman’s Dress for Success Book (1977), and Katherine Parker, Melanie Griffith’s hard nosed boss in Working Girl, declaimed the mantra: “Dress shabbily and they notice the dress. Dress impeccably and they notice the woman.” Of course, everything is a little different now, as power dressing is today less redolent of shoulder pads and perms than with chic cuts and masterful accessorising, but the potent confident spirit of the suit very much remains the same.
“Dress shabbily and they notice the dress. Dress impeccably and they notice the woman”
Here we ask Kalonji what inspired her love for this 3.1 Phillip Lim classic, her own power dressing heroes and the importance of timeless pieces.
Why did you choose to love this suit?
It sort of reminded me of how my mother used to dress when I was growing up. She was all about power suits. I loved it and still do.
Where would you wear it if you owned it?
Where would I not wear it? I like timeless pieces and this suit is definitely one – it's an investment really.
Who are your suit wearing fashion icons?
Marlene Dietrich, Coco Chanel and Bianca Jagger.
Who do you prefer: Melanie Griffiths' blowsy city chic in Working Girl or Cher's matching separates in Clueless?
Which do you like better – dressing up or dressing down?
What are you excited about for the end of August?
My birthday at the beginning of September!
What was the last thing you bought?
Karen Walker sunglasses.
To be in with the chance of winning a 3.1 Phillip Lim Ryder Medium 31 Minute bag, simply fill in your email details below.
The deadline for competition entries is at midnight on Sunday 1 September, 2013. By entering the competition, you are agreeing to the below terms and conditions.
Text by Tish Wrigley