Thursday, January 1, 2009

Here's to you, Mrs Tymoshenko!

Anthropologie's choice of model and her hairdo for the December catalog seems to be paying tribute to the Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko.

Ranking #17 on the Forbes list of world's most powerful women, Tymoshenko was doubted the Ukrainian "Joan of Arc" by her supporters for standing up to the corrupt Kutchman regime under the banner of "Raise up Ukraine!"

Tymoshenko's signature look is a braid wrapped around her head which has been compared to a halo of sorts. Apparently the braid is not worn as a fashion statement, but is supposed to be a powerful political and cultural symbol.

Tymoshenko has often tried to capitalize on the revival of the church in Ukraine, and the braid echoes the halos found in representations of Orthodox Christian icons.
The success of her look can be seen in central Ukraine. In a village home, an elderly woman posted a photo of Ms. Tymoshenko right next to that of a traditional Orthodox icon.
Ms. Teplyuk seemed to regard both with equal fervor.
Tymoshenko has tried to play up that view with her other signature look, white clothing, which is intended to show her purity in the face of what she has called a corrupt political and business culture. - Clifford J. Levy


Tymoshenko inspired milkmaid-braid trend?


Slastena said...

You are right on the money with that post! She is also known among people as simply "girl with a plait" ('devushka s kosoy" and there is a bit of word play. "Kosa"(braid/plait) has another meaning-' scythe" with which she is trying to purge the country of corruption and such.:)

Valerie said...

Thanks for sharing because I would have never known about this amazing lady!

From a fellow Anthro-lover...:)

Genuine Lustre said...

Love her hair. I'd like to know if it's real or a hairpiece. I had thick butt-length hair myself but never could master this style - little hairs popping out, never quite long enough. Her version is so picture perfect.......

SubWife said...

Being from that neck of woods, I can tell you that Ms. Tymoshenko a) has adopted this style only a few years ago
b)after being accused of corruption or something similar(and being one of the richest ppl in Ukraine at the time, the charges were very likely well substantiated
c)before adopting her current style, she was often seen wearing the Western style of clothes and her hair was short and black. After that proved unpopular with Ukrainians who often lives on $25/mo, she came up with her braid, which is very likely fake. d) There was a poetess, who is considered one of the greatest in history of Ukrainian literature, Lesya Ukrayinka (Lesya the Ukrainian), and she wore similar style of braid. I think that was the initial target and the whole comparison to a saint is just accidental, though highly beneficial to Ms. Tymoshenko.

So she's hardly a saint, but has a great sense of style and political acumen.

Sophie said...

Don't worry Subwife, I never entertained the notion of Tymoshenko being an actual saint, I was just musing on how she managed to use her appearance to serve her means.
The braid is not a hairpiece. When Tymoshenko was accused by the media of wearing a hairpiece, she let it down in the middle of a press conference, like Rapunzel.
She's actually quite the knockout with her hair down.

SubWife said...

Nah, never worried about you. you don't strike me as a naive type. One of the commenters called her "amazing", so I wanted to make sure it wasn't for her saintly qualities.

And yes, she is quite attractive, though I found that shorter black hair looked better than current hairstyle. But not as popular with the masses, you see... On the other hand, podletzu vsyo k litzu - braid or a stylish bob.

Slastena said...

I have not seen her in her pre-plait state, but cannot imagine her looking bad with anything, she has these classic features,
handsome woman. On other hand, to wash that amount of hair on everyday basis- one has to be very wealthy to be able to afford a stylist to do it for you ( everyday or every other day- which is most likely; last time I checked - average salon in Kiev would set you back $100 just for shampoo and blow dry). And then, there is an issue of headaches-to carry that mass atop, argg, I am cringing just thinking about it. I bet, Ms T regrets going with this style ( too late now)and fired her PR or whoever suggested the look long time ago.

V said...

I just stumbled upon your blog looking for anthropologie photography :) Love the comparison to Tymoshenko. How would you know her unless you had Ukrainian background?


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