It was fifth grade and Debra, my friend and neighbor, was always dressed to the hilt. I can remember her outfits as if it were yesterday. Her mother, a native New Yorker, supplied Debra with the most outrageously enviable fashions. My wardrobe followed suit, as my mother was a VOGUE junkie and followed the latest trends.
Drooling over Deb’s outfits rather than the open face turkey sandwich was a favorite lunchroom past time for me. But I will NEVER forget the day Debra, with her golden blonde Charlie’s Angels flip cut, strutted into the lunchroom debuting those gold Gloria Vanderbilt jeans. Debra, so chic and confident with her hourglass figure and painted on gilded jeans, became the “butt” of all the lunchroom jokes. I was melting in my plastic cafeteria seat by the second, as jealous and insecure jokes fired up the grille. Debra was the subject of fashion discrimination by a cafeteria full of uncultured swine. That day clearly scarred me. And for Debra, all that glittered wasn’t gold. I never did see another pair of those jeans walk the cafeteria catwalk, at least not metallic. For Debra, at least in school, they were once and done. We did both show up the next day though, with GV velvet jeans and a bubblicious comb in our back pockets. I can’t deny love of those shimmering jeans, despite all the cat fighting that went on that day.
Well, that was 1977. Currently, in the year 2012, I am elated to share with you that everywhere I turn, retailers are donning their metallic retro versions of the very jeans I wished I had 35 years ago along with sparkling sequin tops, dresses, sweater sets and more. Many months ago, I picked up not one but two pairs of liquid medal jeans, each in different carats of gold. There is something about the holidays (especially New Year’s Eve) and getting away with outrageous “bling-a-ling.” I think it’s all about timing. If only Debra were 15 years older, she would have been a Studio 54 sensation. For now, others will just have to MELT over mine.