By on April 15, 2012

This week we introduce another TTAC commenter-turned-contributor, Cameron Miquelon — JB

Good morning gentlemen. My name is Cameron Miquelon, and I’m an independent fashion blogger from Louisville, Kentucky; my blog’s name is 33 avenue Miquelon, if you’re curious to check it out.

That being said, I’m also a car geek, which is why I’m here.

First off, I can’t tell you how much cargo room (in dimensional terms) the trunk of a Camaro can hold — even if the opening of said trunk is deceptively small in comparison with its deck lid. Nor could I tell you anything about how well a car of any sort does on the drag strip, the ‘Ring, or the local shopping mall. Hell, I’ve yet to even own my very first car, and I’m in the process of relearning how to drive at the age of 33 so I can get my license back after foolishly giving it up upon moving to Washington State from Kansas years ago. Maybe I’ll write about this adventure for TTAC in the future.

However, what I can tell you about is style. Fashion and the automobile have been hanging out with each other since the first flapper stepped out of a Ford Model A back in the 1920s. Sometimes it works — any Bugatti that’s not a Veyron, Dusenberg or Talbot comes to mind — and sometimes it misses; AMC and Oleg Cassini, for example. Either way, both examples still have that certain zazz that a lot of today’s vehicles lack. And no, silver paint will not make it any better, I’m afraid.

I can also tell you that there are people who view cars differently. They use adjectives like “cute” and “pretty.” They see cars not as appliances per se, but as accessories, as reflections of their own style. Maybe they’re into tech, or they want to be more “eco-conscience.” Maybe both. They could even be “ironic” in their love of minivans, if the album cover of “El Camino” by The Black Keys is anything to go by.

These people aren’t necessarily women, by the way.

This is what I hope to bring to you in the coming months (aside from the aforementioned attempt to drive again): How those who aren’t as car crazy as you or I view cars in terms of style, colour, needs and wants, et al. I also hope to show you how the fashion world interacts with the automotive world, and vice versa; Mercedes-Benz, for example, owns the naming rights for the fashion weeks in New York, Milan, London and Berlin. And of course, Prada’s Summer/Spring 2012 Collection features influences from Biletproof, including high heels with flames. Really.

* * *

Remember a while back when Derek mentioned how car fanatics — like Mormons, moms and fashionistas — had taken to Pinterest to show the world their favourite machines via a virtual corkboard? Well, there’s “pinning” photos, and then there’s making fashionable collages with them through the world of Polyvore.

A few months back, I took to my Polyvore account to create tributes/interpretations to some of the latest and greatest that made their way down the ramp during the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, then posted the results on my fashion blog. This time, I figured I would do it again for all of you, this time with some of the latest and greatest from the recent New York International Auto Show.

Let’s begin with the SRT Viper. What I wanted to do here was to create an outfit based on the supercar’s overall homicidal attitude while picturing the kind of woman who would embody this, one who, in the words of Lady Caroline Lamb to describe George Gordon Byron, would be “mad, bad, and dangerous to know.” The leather pants and ripped shirt are from Balmain, the boots are Valentino (for that Italian specialness), and the bracelet from the late Alexander McQueen — a man who came pretty close to living up to Lady Caroline’s words — should be enough to let you know that even if you show respect and deference to the Viper, you’ll probably come away burned… if you’re lucky.

From one snake to another, here is my interpretation of the Shelby 1000. Here, I imagined someone who could’ve been “the girl next door,” but with some added zazz — not that the 1000 is a sleeper, of course. The only hint that this person is just a bit different would be the cobra earrings and the snakeskin Hermès watch, while the Converse sneakers tell you that this one’s definitely all-American.

The Fisker Atlantic. A four-door extended-range EV with a price tag of $50,000 USD and… not much else at the moment. For this interpretation, I focused mainly on the tangerine colour of the body. Couldn’t find a shiny, sparkly dress, but I did find a mustache ring to add some fun. I couldn’t tell you the person who would wear this outfit off-hand, but I’ll presume it to be someone who could be a fan of technology, and a lover of Tom Selleck.

Finally, you could call this the Mad Men interpretation of the 2014 Chevy Impala: Navy top, black pencil skirt, silver shoes, and a chunky watch. Conservative, a hint of glamour, and ready for the office, the new Impala — and its equally styled driver — will be sure to dazzle the mall parking lot for a few years to come. At least until the driver buys a Lexus, anyway.

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44 Comments on “A New Writer Offers A New Look At The NYIAS...”


  • avatar
    28-cars-later

    “At least until the driver buys a Lexus, anyway”

    have you seen Lexus lately, heck Buick is nipping on their heels…

  • avatar
    Educator(of teachers)Dan

    Um this tragically unhip guy has just one thing to say…

    http://tinyurl.com/7ygu86m

  • avatar
    Quentin

    Your polyvore presentation needs a little bit of work. Too often the clothes are lost in the background blocks of color or in the photograph of the car. (Viper and Fisker, particularly)

    I’m not sure that any of these cars really work for the fashionista, either. You should have done men’s fashion for the Viper and Mustang and probably something more conservative (older) for the Impala. The wristwatch is the problem there. People that wear that watch and those shoes don’t buy full size sedans. 40+ is the full size sedan segment. I’m somewhat torn on the Fisker. I’m having a hard time picturing what the buyer will look like, but I doubt it would be a young, hip woman.

  • avatar
    OldandSlow

    With my LL Bean shirts in the winter and Hawaiian shirts in the summer – I guess I’m not keeping up with the “poodle dawgs”.

    For pantalones – I prefer Cabela’s – which have extra pockets for my phone, a pocket knife and a pack of smokes.

    To keep up appearances, motoring wise, I’m still tooling around in a 41 year old VW Bus – with a nine year old Mazda Tribute as a back up.

    My watch is a Timex.

    • 0 avatar
      nickoo

      No worries, Subaru made a green and gold LL bean model, that currently sits on overpriced used car lots, waiting for you to come buy it when your bus gives up the ghost.

  • avatar
    Slab

    If only the auto stylists would spend half the time on car interiors that you did on this post.

  • avatar
    dwford

    Just got back from the NYC autoshow, so I’ll throw my 2 cents in:

    The new Viper is beautiful. My buddy texted his wife a photo – she’s says it looks like a penis. Which I think is the point, so score one for Chrysler – err SRT.

    The new Avalon looked like a dead catfish, sitting all alone on its pedestal with almost no one around it. Sad. The Impala wasn’t that much better. The FR-S/BRZ were very nice, but the interiors are kinda cheap. I’ll still take one though.

    The Ford Fusion left me cold. The styling is nice, but doesn’t make my legs weak. The new Escape was the same. Wish I could have gotten into the Fusion and the C-Max, but they were locked. Liked the Focus ST very much.

    At Hyundai, the new Santa Fe’s are really nice, and I am looking forward to selling them. The Elantra GT is gorgeous, but they killed all the utility from the Elantra Touring – rear seat cushions now need to be flipped forward and headrests removed to fold the seats flat. The cargo cover is a cheap piece like in the Accent, and can’t go under the floor like it used to, and there are huge blind spots in the rear. Nice huge sunroof though. The Elantra Coupe is, well, and Elantra Coupe, no more, no less.

    Dodge Dart was very nice, but my buddy – who owned a slant six Dart back in the day (with a Ratt logo on the hood no less) – wrinkled his nose at the name being reused.

    The new MKZ is a major miss as far as I’m concerned. The big roof is nice, but it is just a gimmick, the opening doesn’t seem any bigger than anyone else’s panoramic roof, and the rear window and trunk area is just not right. What’s with these short deck sedans?? The Caddy XTS, the MKZ, the Avalon, the Fusion, the Impala, all funny looking.

    I fell asleep walking by the new Altima.

    For some reason the “updated” Honda Crosstour was up on a pedestal like anyone cared.

    I actually liked the Buick Verano. The exterior styling is nice, cohesive and conservative. The interior is very nice – comfy seats, cloth on the A pillars. Looks good, but $27k and we don’t get the turbo? Are we going to see a $30k Verano? Let’s not go crazy, Buick. The new mini crossover – didn’t bother for the name – totally wrong for the brand. Doesn’t look like a real Buick at all. Did they learn nothing from the Vuick?

    Couldn’t bother to care about Audi, Mercedes, VW or Lexus. Breezed right by, stopping only by the LF-A. I skipped Infiniti as well. I guess nothing I have been reading about new models from these brands made much of an impression on me that would have made me stop and look. Would have liked to have seen some BMWs, but the place was literally wall to wall people. Can someone tell me the logic of bringing your baby in a stroller to a car show?

  • avatar
    Acd

    Not sure I understand this post…

  • avatar
    Oren Weizman

    WTF did I just read

  • avatar
    jimbobjoe

    I can’t imagine anyone wearing those shoes getting into an Impala. Unless it were a rental.

    I actually would like to see you comment on interiors. For the most part cars are purchased based on factors other than their exterior aesthetics with the result that the exteriors are often pretty standard (perhaps frustratingly so.) But automakers have some room to play with the interiors…and seeing someone with taste criticize them might be interesting.

  • avatar
    supremebrougham

    Welcome to the fold!

    As for me, I am practical and conservative to a fault when it comes to things, yet I feel I know good style when I see it. Yesterday I found and photographed a beautiful and all original 1984 Oldsmobile Ninety Eight Regency Brougham (I shared a pic on Sajeev’s Brown Car Appreciation Society Facebook Page). Now to me, that car has style, elegance, grace and dignity!

    Why oh why can’t automakers put these qualities back into cars again??? And no, I don’t mean vinyl tops, just the quiet stately elegance part…

  • avatar
    Robert Gordon

    Fashion and Bugattis hanging out together? I don’t quite know where the ‘fashion’ was hanging out in this

    http://www.bugatti.com/media/c2528908a2f32c61138c70ef3ff67a91/bugatti_t32_-2-.jpg

    Bugatti then, maybe he’s the passenger with the black helmet?

    As for Talbots WTF? They made some reasonably pretty Singer clones pre-war, but they’re mostly remembered for the likes of

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talbot_Tagora.

    Er Zazz, right gotcha, or perhaps you meant a Talbot-Lago (different manufacturer…!)

    • 0 avatar
      Robert Gordon

      Html tags not a-workin?

      A fashionable Bugatti apparently:

      http://www.bugatti.com/media/c2528908a2f32c61138c70ef3ff67a91/bugatti_t32_-2-.jpg

      Typical Talbot…

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talbot_Tagora

      • 0 avatar

        Hehe! I did mean the vehicles made under the Talbot-Lago name, such as the gorgeous T-150. As for Bugattis, I was thinking more along the lines of the 1937 Type 57SC, such as the one fashion designer Ralph Lauren owns.

      • 0 avatar
        Robert Gordon

        Don’t get me started on Ralph Lauren. The way he has them over-restored is laughable.

        If anyone can’t see that his immaculately restored D-type Jag would have looked better left with dings, scrapes and duct-taped seats as testimony to its racing days there is something wrong.

        Likewise for all his racing Ferraris, Alfas etc, which are simple pastiches of what they are intended for.

  • avatar
    Skink

    This entire post is a way of looking at cars that I’ve never considered. It’s by turns amusing and baffling. Equestrian boots and a Viper? OK. Do auto manufacturers pay people to conjure up these connections?

  • avatar
    TonyJZX

    its not borne out by reality… there’s an article on here not more than a few weeks ago about how upwards of 95% vettes, vipers and shelbys are bought by men… normally those in the 40-50+ age group self made, often blue collar… working man’s supercars

    the accessories here are a dream

  • avatar
    acuraandy

    Interesting perspective, however I noticed a bias towards ‘fashion’ (or lack thereof).

    Cars have become appliances, not fashion statements (as reinforced by current CAFE standards). As much as a ‘car guy’ as I am, my current ride (a ’12 Accent hatch) suits my needs just fine. As far as i’m concerned, if this car lasts me the loan, I can buy a ‘cool’ car in a few years (Challenger, BR-Z, et. al.)

    Fashion is in the eye of the beholder, and since most 18 year old kids nowadays would rather buy an iPhone than ‘accepting the burden’ of car ownership, I think the industry as a whole is in trouble.

    Build sub-$20k muscle cars again and the auto industry can be saved. Short of that, I think we’ll all be driving Priuii soon…ick.

    • 0 avatar
      28-cars-later

      Andy if I could I’d look into that BRZ sooner than later, evidently car guys are going to have to save the auto industry unless Apple gets into the motor biz.

  • avatar

    Cameron,

    Margery Krevsky runs a talent agency that provides models and product specialists for auto shows. She wrote a book called Sirens of Chrome about the ladies who work the shows. She also has an extensive collection of couture pieces, one off dresses by top designers, made just for auto shows over the years. She was on the Autoline After Hours videos on Autoblog, with a fashion show. Margery’s segment starts at about 17:00.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EXnqvf9pDXE

    I’ll put up with having to look at Pete DeLorenzo’s mug to get to see Caroline O. (32:20).

  • avatar

    All the car paint companies and their customers pay close attention to fashion trends in apparel and decor in trying to anticipate what colors people will want three years from now.

    • 0 avatar
      James2

      I don’t know why they bother, as most people seem to settle for white or some variation of silver. Most automakers seem to delight in offering as few colors as possible. Is everyone devolving toward the Apple/Henry Ford “one color only” aesthetic?

      • 0 avatar
        redav

        There may be a difference between what people like to see and what they like to own. In other words, put the trendy, catchy colors in the ads and showroom to draw them in and then sell them the bland gray/silver they want.

    • 0 avatar
      Robert Gordon

      “and their customers pay close attention to fashion trends in apparel and decor in trying to anticipate what colors people will want three years from now”

      In my experience this actually equates to about one or two deluded individuals employed by the car company to flounce around with paint chips pretending there is actually a decernable difference between one grey and another and then make engineer’s life hell with a completely arbitrary colour ‘sign-off’ process.

  • avatar
    pgcooldad

    Well, instead of reading the article I went with letting each presentation sink in to my sences and visualizing the woman behind the clothe. Then I tried to decide which one I would bang. So as an auto aficionado, I decided that I would bang them all regardless of the size of the trunk, lack of head or leg room, nor the lack of a back seat.

    Now that was fun!

  • avatar
    Dr.Nick

    Hahaha! April Fool’s is funny this year….. right guys?

  • avatar

    I’m not sure I get it, but I like it. This is way out there by car-blog standards, but it’s one of those moments where TTAC just rocks — by giving us a seriously different perspective. Cool.

    • 0 avatar
      Ingvar

      I get it, and I like it. And I agree, TTAC continues to amaze. Give it time and some leeway, and this could turn into something really interesting.

      • 0 avatar
        redav

        I agree. This post makes perfect sense to me, and I quite enjoyed seeing the different perspective. Without it, too many of the views here end up one-dimensional.

  • avatar
    nickoo

    Keep up the good work, it’s good to see things from a different perspective. I think audi, particularly the A7, has become the new lexus, I don’t really see the suburban crowd aspiring to lexus anymore. You forgot to pick pieces for the updated for 2013 RAM 1500!

  • avatar
    Philosophil

    An interesting perspective. This strikes me, however, as more caricature than anything else.

    I’ve always said that vehicles are like clothes in that most people don’t simply drive them, they wear them as well. People often choose (or would choose, if they could) vehicles that express their own self-image as much as anything else (and this is as true of pickup owners and Cabela people as it is of Bugatti and Balenciaga owners).

    While fashion is obviously a powerful force in automobile design (with the appeal to self-image being a central feature of advertising), the focus on being fashionable (as opposed to stylish) often results in something that seems to be ‘trying too hard,’ if you will. Does the explicitly fashion-oriented buyer (as represented in Ur-Turn’s piece) represent a large segment of the market, or is this limited largely to the ‘luxury’ sector?

  • avatar
    Robstar

    I am lost in this article, although I’ll have to re-read it to comprehend it. I don’t have much fashion sense (beige slacks + one of 3-color button-ups for work), but I’d love to read a write-up of your ‘learning-to-drive’ experience as an adult!

    Proposal: One write-up of “learning to drive”. A 2nd write-up of learning to drive stick.

    I’d love to see this from an adult perspective.

  • avatar
    Ruinedeffigy

    Regardless of how you feel about the article and the context, one thing is certain here: This is the kind of innovation every blog needs. Even if it isn’t accepted whole-heatedly, it certainly brings to light the different individuals and their enthusiasms that all have one common interest: Cars. How one individuals portray’s their adoration of vehicles to another’s is exactly how people connect and the community grows. I am glad to see this article on top of my RSS feed.

    That being said, the article is a little hard to follow, but I liked it! Keep up the good work, hope to see something else from you again soon!

    • 0 avatar
      Monty

      Agreed – I fully support adding interesting and different authors and subjects. It’s a much different perspective than mine, and although I’m fashion-(insert old-timey word here meaning mentally challenged), I really appreciated the take on the cars with the accessories. I also think it’s about time more women were involved – other than Cammy, I can’t think of too many on this blog who comment.

      I look forward to the next post, especially about re-learning to drive!


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