Before Melania Trump killed off-shoulder robing by doing it at the Republican debate, it was the cool, Anna-Wintour-aping, Paris Is Burning-referencing way to wear your coat or jacket. Forget that you had to manoeuvre yourself around a room like a baby geisha, silently praying for no large gusts of wind, it was a way of wearing your coat that suggested both poise and being a boss.
But, as the styling in both the AW 2016 collections of Balenciaga (off both shoulders) and Vetements (jacket demoted to being held in a ringed coat holder worn off your belt, see below), the jacket mood was shifting south.
That was March. A couple of months later and we are officially in a post-robing era. “One-arming” is the delicate practice of wearing your jacket like you hate it. Like your jacket is perhaps a torture device that you are quietly easing yourself out of before your captors come back home. Taken in the context of the rise of the raptor arm pose too, that body part is having a weird moment. If 2015 was about #Freethenipple, 2016 is about #Freethearms. It’s difficult not to see it as part of the rebelliousness that may forever be called “the Vetements effect” – conforming to the non-conforming silhouettes of Demna Gvasalia’s designs and recalibrating the idea of how you should wear your clothes.
In this case, an insouciant, Kevin and Perry-ish attitude towards your jacket is key; witness Kylie Jenner manhandling her denim jacket on Snapchat, or Ariana Grande, who wears every jacket like it’s a pesky outstanding tax return she just can’t seem to rid herself of. We are pretty sure some of Kylie and Ariana’s best friends are jackets, but the look now is all about pretending they are mortal enemies.