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Quiet Luxury ≠ Oatmeal Sad Beige

I’m seeing a lot of notes going around now about quiet luxury, and how rich people (truly rich), invest in classic basics because they are rich and therefore don’t need to wear logos to look “rich”. Their black turtlenecks are $1000, not $20, and their coats are $5000 rather than $50.

The problem I’m having with this, is first of all..

People who want to look rich in this manner, (usually) can’t actually afford it

$5000 for a coat is way out of the reach of many, and even if they bought a $200 coat of a similar cut, there’s absolutely no way it would pass for a $5000 one.

The $5000 coat is likely double faced cashmere, expertly tailored, and has a look to it that is very difficult to replicate with polyester-wool blends. Aside from just eyeballing it, you can also feel the difference when you touch the fabrics.

So, in a way, telling people they can look richer by wearing simpler items, feels a bit condescending in a way.

MYTH: neutrals/sad beige = luxurious

When did it ever happen that colour was so incredibly gauche that we cannot deign to wear it, in fear of looking “poor”? Suddenly, wearing pink or blue is considered ridiculous because we all know they focus on black, grey, camel, beige and white. And all its iterations of it.

If you decide to wear a beautifully made coat that happens to be red…. *gasp*… it could indeed have also cost $5000 but now you look poor, as you’re not trying to blend into the background with your supposed richness, covered in sad beige. You’re standing out, and that’s not what rich people apparently (?) are into these days. They’re into blending into the background like sad wallflowers, so no one sees or talks to them just because they’re rich.

Or maybe it’s a front – I’m blending in because I am SO RICH that I don’t need to stand out, to prove anything to anyone by stating that I’m rich, which in and of itself, is already making a statement that you’re in that mindset, ergo, you’re rich. You’re part of the Sad Beige Rich Cult.

Then it made me reflect upon something I read a while ago, on how the countries that wholeheartedly embrace colour, aren’t Western. So you have this sort of forced snobbery of not wearing colour (sad beige) as a marker of status because…. Well, you’re from a Western country. So you’re .. well, “rich”, by default.

The irony in this, as the article later pointed out, was that in the statues you see of that period in time that’s considered luxurious / high-end, their clothes were actually very colourful, and over time, have faded or have been completely bleached of their original pigments. Thus, people associate Sad Beige with Rich Luxury based off inaccurate depictions of what people wore back in the good ol’ colonizer days.

Not everyone looks great in Sad Beige

Honestly, I’ll play with it once in a while, but then my need for colour & print takes over. I feel more alive when wearing colour, personally. I can understand if people just prefer neutrals as it is easier to mix+match, or to wear, and that’s just fine. But what I do not enjoy, is snobbery about when wearing said colours…

people are made to feel like they do not fit into this Rich Quiet Luxury Neutrals box

Famously, Anna Wintour wears dresses + colour because she’s sick of everyone in black all the time and said to not wear all-black.

I just feel like there is a strange Oatmeal Aesthetic on the rise in clothing, and it is irking me ONLY because people are starting to take it as the standard template for How To Look Rich and Luxurious… and maybe being afraid (?) to try colour or different things, in fear of looking poor (??!?!). It’s just mind-boggling nonsense.

I also challenge fashion bloggers and style influencers to PLEASE stop pushing this Minimalist Oatmeal Aesthetic as THE ONE to have, and taking the easy way out (so to speak) by just simply showing the same oatmeal outfits, over and over again in neutrals.

I am all for a great oatmeal, neutral outfit once in a while, but sometimes that is all I see these days.


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