The New Age Commute
I do believe that being a staunch optimist makes it a joy to reimagine the future of style.
The reality for many folks in my home country of Vietnam lies in the everyday motorcycle. 79% of Vietnamese people still commute by motorbike (VMAA) and it has simply become a vehicle ingrained within our national identity. However, as a developing nation, little attention paid to the environmental feedback loop that directly affects commuters every day.
As the country’s growing population continues to rely on predominantly gas-powered vehicles for their day-to-day needs, they are directly polluting the open air as motorbike commuters. This impact coupled with other polluting factors along with the global state of climate change causes open-air commuters to face harsher summers and searingly colder winters.
Out of necessity birthed a distinctive style for the modern Vietnamese motorbike riders, especially for women. A sweeping one-piece dress colored in bright pastel tones with grating floral patterns seared into the fabric from top to bottom, covers every bit of its wearer as the centerpiece. Worn over one’s helmet, mask and a pair of sunglasses, the dress is equal part practical, dubious chic and concerningly apocalyptic. To me, it is simply a tiring, unexciting eyesore. And it is yet another piece of fabric that one has to put on, separate from the fashion underneath it.
As previously stated, I am an optimist. Not only do I believe in a country that evolves its national symbol with the environmental state of the world, but I believe in fashion evolving along with its wearer as well. Bracing the elements shouldn’t mean sacrificing style. Besides, there’s nothing worse than having to cover up your gorgeous Sunday best under some cheap fabric.
These looks above are a canonical take on the chic Parisian Vespa rider, donning a sophisticated silk head scarf, a pair of eye-catching cat-eye sunglasses, and of course, a bold red lip. Styled for every occasion, from Sunday brunch to downtown coffee meetings.