What Not to Wear


And so to Round Two Thousand of the debate about what us ladies should wear on screen. Or not. It’s the sports reporters at Sky, this time, being lambasted for being too glamorous.
Well, here’s the thing.  I am quite often on the Sky News sofa reviewing the papers. I am sometimes in madly high heels. Often a short skirt. Sometimes over the knee leather boots. I have been seen in shorts. This sort of stuff is routine in my wardrobe. It is routine for many women on screen, unless you are reporting from a war zone. My female counterparts on the sofa are in similar stuff. Bright stretchy dresses. Really very high heels.

Is the outfit all that counts? Are are the sports presenters the human version of flouncy curtains? From reasonably regular exposure at the workface, I would say not. They seem to me to be experts, familiar with every twitch, nuance and prediction in their field. They know the inner workings of Arsene Wenger’s mind, Murray’s spin and Chris Froome’s thighs.

So, back to the clothes. Do we have an equivalent of the neutral ‘suit and tie’ combo which most men wear? We do not. 10 seconds on the High Street would reveal that the market is full of sexy clothes. Presumably because women buy them. Even Boden ventures above the knee, and M&S has a body con dress in its Limited range (I own it, and have worn it on the Sky sofa).

The collapse of Nicole Farhi says it all. Women don’t want to dress in giant trousers, or shapeless, creased linen sacks which finish half way down the calf, any more. Call it the legacy of Madonna,  Victoria Beckham, or Pippa Middleton, but we like clothes which show off our shape. It doesn’t mean we are stupid. Or that we can’t organise our own ‘career path’.

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