Bilious Green

We interrupt our regularly scheduled programming to bring you an East Village Rant.

Like an annoying insect hovering around one's ear, the fashion world has been buzzing about green. Not the color (which happens to be fashionable too - like this kelly green DVF skirt), but the eco-friendly concept. At first I dismissed it as the usual fashion hoo-hah, but it's not going away. It threatens to be the new breast cancer awareness of good-cause fashion tie-ins.

Fashion Week Daily dedicated an entire Front Row magazine to the green trend during New York's fashion week this February; Barneys proclaimed that green was what the Barneys customer wanted, and green was what Barneys was buying. Leave it to Barneys, which generated this animal-centric exotic leather accessories campaign in the fall, to spearhead the green trend as well.

I'm not saying that many of the things featured in the most recent Styles' Pulse column this Sunday aren't pretty (though the sneakers are hideous). But the items featured here aren't really green. What's really green is not to produce, buy, or even write about a new necklace/ pair of shoes/dress.

According to this April's InStyle Magazine, these celebrities are all green because they buy recycled shoes (again, hideous sneakers) and bags. I'll believe a celebrity is green when I see one of them mixing with the hoi polloi on a commercial plane instead of flying by private jet.

I bought these Garnet Hill pajamas made from green cotton recently. I didn't buy them because they were green, but because I liked the pattern. They're kind of scratchy. Despite this inconvenience of mine for the good of the environment, I still don't consider myself at all green. On a good day, I might pass for a pale shade of aqua.

Intermix (which I call "Interbitch" - clothes sold by, for, and to bitches) just sent me this gift card with a promise that they'll donate $5 to "support initiatives reducing global climate change" if I redeem the $50 gift card. (I can see the tagline now: "Helping bitches everywhere!") A generous offer, but I also have to buy $300-worth of new things to get Interbitch to donate the $5.

So if that's not green, what is? No one in fashion is writing about it, because there aren't any pretty photos to go with. If green were truly in fashion, here is what the dress code would be:

1. Ignore fashion.
2. Don't buy anything.
3. Wear clothes until they wear out.
4. Solicit hand-me downs: mom's clothes, or a "boyfriend sweater" that really is your boyfriend's sweater.
4. If you must buy something, buy only natural materials like wool and cotton.
5. Wear only inherited jewelry.
6. Resole your shoes rather than buying new ones.
7. Old-looking clothes are in; new-looking clothes are out.

I didn't think of these rules all by myself. No, they hark back to an earlier time, circa 1980.

Because it's out of print, the Official Preppy Handbook isn't available new anymore. If you want it, you'll have to buy it used.