It’s no secret that the fashion industry tends to skew young. In fact, it’d be safe to say it’s obsessed with youth.
Runway shows and fashion magazines are filled with teenagers and young women modelling clothes designed for people much older than them; in some cases we’ve seen actual children, like Thylane Blondeau, styled in very adult fashions.
In this world, age has the power to stop careers in their tracks. Just ask Australian model Gemma Ward, who told press this week she was being warned about her looks “fading” by the time she reached the ripe old age of 20. Scary stuff.
However, designers occasionally remember that flesh-and-blood women don’t actually expire at the age of 25. Take Marc Jacobs’ latest ad, for instance:
SUSAN, Seduction Like so many teenagers, I spent countless Friday and Saturday nights at midnight screenings of The Rocky Horror Picture Show at the 8th Street Playhouse (which is still standing!) and the Festival Theatre on 57th Street (which has long since closed). TRHPS was a coming of age and right of passage. It became an invitation (or excuse) to dress up and express oneself fearlessly. The cult classic made it cool for boys to wear sequins, satin and fishnets. I fell in love with Susan Sarandon’s onscreen portrayal of Janet during her “loss of innocence” scene by way of a crossdressing alien and her giddy, ecstatic rendition of, “touch-a, touch-a, touch me…” There was a subtle rebellious quality that I found in Susan with how she chose to play Janet and perhaps (as I now look back on it) her decision as a young actor to take a role in a film that challenged the notion of gender roles. In the hyper-stylized, gothic film, The Hunger, Susan’s portrayal as the lesbian love interest of vampire Catherine Deneuve was yet another progressive challenging of normal and a testament to Susan’s artistic exploration of boundaries. It was in my early days at Perry Ellis when I first had the privilege of meeting Susan. Her intelligence, courage, strength, conviction and ballsiness has always been so admirable to me. There’s an inherent seductive quality in Susan as a woman who always speaks her mind and an artist who takes risks. Her talent as an actress is one of extraordinary range, talent and power. The stunning Susan Sarandon by David Sims for our Fall ’16 ad campaign.
In his Fall 2016 campaign, the US designer has featured Academy Award-winning actress Susan Sarandon, who just so happens to be 69 years old — a far cry from today’s teenaged ‘it’ models.
The 69-year-old is photographed in a sexy, sparkly dress with a deep V-cut neckline, teamed with black gloves and classic winged eyeliner.
It’s a gloriously seductive image and proof that age is no barrier to beauty or appeal. However, as Jacobs notes in his Instagram caption, Sarandon’s allure isn’t purely physical.