Valentino and Gwyneth Paltrow Wonder Woman Fashion Line Misses the Mark

The Secret History of Wonder Woman. Jill Lepore. Alfred A. Knopf. October 24, 2014. Harry G. Peter Sketches with William Moulton Marston notes.

In a not very surprising collaboration, Valentino and Gwyneth Paltrow have put together a new line of clothing inspired by Wonder Woman. The collection includes a variety of items from sneakers to dresses, jackets, and accessories. The collection is 25 pieces in all and is currently being sold on Paltrow’s Goop store, both online and in its New York location. Currently, the collection ranges in price from $275 to $9,900.

Yes, you read that right, but can we really expect something different from a collaboration between Valentino and Gwyneth Paltrow? It gets worse with Paltrow’s description of the inspiration behind the collection:

All women are in some way Wonder Woman because they have to think about the job, about the kids, about the husband.

All of which is very true for many women. Typically of GOOP, however, this mindset doesn’t take into account women who may not have traditional families, male partners, may opt out of having children, etc. For GOOP, all women are employed, have kids, and married to a man. That is certainly all women, huh?

However, it is exciting to see geek culture pervade what can be considered “high fashion.” Two WWAC resident fashion geeks, Desiree Rodriguez and Ginnis Tonik, decided to review the collection!

 

Desiree: Nothing about this Wonder Woman collection screams – or even gently speaks – Wonder Woman to me. The overabundance of stars could signify Captain America just as much as Wonder Woman, or the fourth of July. Neither the concept nor the design of this line appear to be in line with who Wonder Woman is as a fictional character.

Ginnis: I like when the inspiration behind a collection is more subtle, but this doesn’t even seem inspired. Also, it looks suspiciously like Dolce & Gabanna’s 2011 Fall/Winter collection. It’s like they said stars and American colors equal Wonder Woman! With some Grecian style elements! Oh, and here is some punk rock to make explain the craft-style aesthetic. It just feels more stunt than genuine inspiration. I don’t expect much from GOOP, but I do expect better from Valentino, dammit. I mean their Spring 2015 collection, which was inspired by Shakespeare, Dante’s Inferno, and Marc Chagall’s painting is gorgeous.

Desiree: I love the idea behind the Paltrow/Valentino line, I can admit that. I love the idea that comics, especially our comic book heroines, are influencing fashion in such a mainstream way. However, the fact that this line is completely unaffordable for most women is already puts me off. The fact that it’s barely within Wonder Woman’s color palette only adds to that for me.

Ginnis: I agree, but it is Valentino. What I would like to know, as Wonder Woman is all about justice, are these pieces ethically made? Are the laborers paid a livable wage? Are the materials ethically made, too? High end fashion is about name recognition, but quality (or it should be), but to me quality also means ethically made materials and laborers are paid a fair wage.

Desiree: That’s a really good point. I find the whole line, and the potential background shady aspects to be really out of line with what Wonder Woman stands for. It feels, ultimately, like a name grab instead of an actual attempt to pay tribute or be inspired by an iconic character. The closest piece in the set that resembles Wonder Woman at all are the sneakers, and while the shirt shift is pretty adorable, I already bought a pair of star printed high-waisted shorts at Plato’s Closet for ten bucks.

Ginnis: The sneakers are pretty cute! But looking at this collection and considering that GOOP’s definition of the modern, real-life women is working moms – are these clothes what working moms where? Even rich, skinny ones? The collection just looks more teenager than working mom.

Desiree: The audience for this is pretty obvious, and I’m not feeling it at all. The fact that there are no bracelets –iconic parts of Wonder Woman’s design for decades, even with all the various costume changes and redesigns – seems like a huge oversight. So, sorry, Paltrow and Valentino, the idea was great, and I hope we see more superhero fashion in the future, but clothes us wonder women could actually afford to buy and feel like Wonder Woman wearing, would be nice.

Desiree Rodriguez

Desiree Rodriguez

Desiree Rodriguez is currently majoring in Converged Communications. She's a writer, geek girl, and proud queer mestiza woman. Desiree is an entertainment writer for The Tempest, and contributor for Nerds of Color. Desiree has written for The Young Folks, The Feminist Wire, and Geeked Out Nation.
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