Stylist's Beauty Director Joanna McGarry tries the Alice band - as seen at Loewe spring/summer 2011.
A string of elocution lessons couldn’t compete with the posture-improving, prim-making effects of sliding on an Alice band.
Deeply ingrained in our cultural memory, it’s inextricably entwined with notions of childhood innocence and trussed-up perfection – see its namesake, Alice In Wonderland and more recently, Charlotte York in Sex And The City and Bree Van de Kamp in Desperate Housewives. And, after slipping on Missoni’s woven Alice band, I found it did have an air of straightjacketed perfection – inferring, “I’m facing the world front-on and everything’s fine”. It’s faintly neurotic and uptight, but outwardly perfect.
The catwalk has played with these attributes for summer, it was juxtaposed with acid green eyeshadow at Loewe, while at Rag & Bone it was given a much needed hit of cool – hair was damp and scraped back with a simple strip of black across the head. It had been about 15 years since I last wore one and I must admit, there was something quite reassuringly nostalgic about revisiting that era. In style terms, it instantly completes any outfit, although, it works better when matched with androgynous clothes.
By the end of the day, I felt I was slowly morphing into a member of the WI. Still, I vowed to try the Alice band again, but this time with dishevelled, two-day old hair.