Saturday, 5 April 2014

Give me glamour

How do you define glamour? What do you find glamorous? It definitely means something but it's hard to pin down. Probably everyone has their own idea of what it is.

Of course at my age a lot of things I used to find glamorous are now quite mundane, as I'm more aware of the artifice behind the public image - like all the Oscars palaver and all those photo-shopped supermodels - but there are still plenty of things I find glamorous.

So what does glamorous mean? I would say especially exciting or attractive or stylish. Having an almost magical or enchanted quality, something so special it seems almost unreal.

For me, certain places have that quality - Sydney or Vancouver or Venice. Certain people, like George Clooney or Claudia Schiffer. Certain things, like beautiful scarves or pottery or paintings or jewellery. Even little things like nail varnish or passport visa stamps or signed copies of books.

Some things just aren't glamorous, like food or restaurants. We all know the behind-the-scenes drudgery and anxiety that goes into the finished product, so glamour disappears. A plate of risotto may be delicious, or nutritious, or satisfying, but glamorous it ain't.

I would hate it if I got to a point where nothing seemed glamorous any more. The world would be so depressingly humdrum, squalid, dreary. What I like about glamour is its instantly uplifting quality. It makes me feel life is worth living, the world is full of unexpected treasures and delights, there are things so wonderful they make me gasp and go weak at the knees.

Whatever your definition of glamour, life would be sadly lacking without it. Like a face that never smiled.

18 comments:

Rummuser said...

I get my quota of the glamour quotient by tying a cravat when I wear safari shirts! You have no idea how many compliments that one piece of silk gets.

And I can of course flaunt my club membership which is another glamour quotient for the page 3 wannabes.

Both incidentally go back to a time when living was more laid back and unimortant things like these did not matter. They were simply part of a life style of the middle class.

Bijoux said...

You are right, it is hard to pin down. Every example I could give, would really be more about being classy than glamorous, but I don't believe they are the same thing.

Mike said...

To me, glamour (glamor in the U.S.) has a negative connotation, something or someone that is delusively alluring. For example, Vancouver is a wonderful and interesting place, but beneath the glamor, like most cities, there are parts that are rather squalid. I'd still like to spend some time there again, one day.

The world is full of wonder, treasures and delights.

susie said...

I think of JFK Jr. and his wife Carolyn Besette-Kennedy.

I looked forward to aging with them. Sadly, I'm the only one aging.

Nick said...

Ramana: Neither of those sound glamorous to me, more like trying to impress! But as I say, I do find beautiful scarves glamorous.

Bijoux: I agree, classy is something a bit different. Glamour has that extra element of something magical.

Mike: I don't think glamour has to be delusively alluring, just alluring. It may or may not involve delusion.

Nick said...

Susie: True, there was something very glamorous about those two, though again it's hard to pin down. There was a sort of aura around them.

Jay of The Depp Effect said...

Certain people just seem to have glamour, don't they? And it's nothing to do with the price of what they're wearing, in my opinion, it's what OH and I tend to call 'sparkle'. It's an indefiniable quality that simply makes them seem attractive and interesting and exciting.

You're right, places can have glamour, too - and Venice is definitely one of them.

Nick said...

Jay: Oh no, expense has little to do with it. Even if someone is dressed head to toe in cheap-casual, there can still be that special quality that makes heads turn.

Grannymar said...

Nick, I remember seeing a model talking about glamour, deportment and a good carriage all going together. To prove her point she changed into a Hessian sack, added a belt at the waist and a string of beads at her neckline. She looked glamorous and elegant. No expense there.

I have yet to visit Venice, but always thought it to be a place of glamour.

Jenny Woolf said...

I wouldn't like to be glamorous myself but I do love to see it when it's real. So often you see people trying to be glamorous and failing and that is almost as bad as looking like a refugee from Mao's China! :)

Nick said...

Grannymar: You're right, the way someone moves and presents themself can create glamour. Which is why most models look glamorous.

Nick said...

Jenny: True, it's embarrassing when someone's trying to glam up but none of it quite works and they just look ridiculous.

Secret Agent Woman said...

I don't think glamor us a trait that draws me. Elegance, sometimes, but glamor (for me) implies artifice. I tend to like beauty that is more natural - and clean-lined - a Shaker table over something more ornate, say, even though the latter is more glamorous. Particularly if the photo used to accompanied this post is meant as glamor - it's completely creepy to me!

Nick said...

Agent: I think there's a bit of an overlap between elegance and glamour. Like beautiful scarves and jewellery can be both elegant and glamorous.

I agree about natural beauty though. I would also prefer a Shaker table to something more fancy. We have one in our living room in fact.

Yes, I think the pic is meant to convey glamour, but I find the false eyelashes distinctly creepy!

CheerfulMonk said...

I'm afraid I'm not attracted to glamour, and no one would ever accuse me of having it! I agree with Mike, though, "The world is full of wonder, treasures and delights." That's enough for me.

Nick said...

Jean: Okay, fair enough, no glamour for you! But yes, the world is full of wonder, treasures and delights, whether we see them as glamorous or just amazing.

Suburbia said...

You've made me think now! I don't use the expression much but I will think on it now!

Nick said...

Suburbia: Interesting. Some people hate the idea of glamour, some people are okay with it. Maybe it's the camp aspect of glamour that attracts me....