Wish You Were Where? 10 Ways To Have Your Most Fashionable Summer Yet
Winter begins to fade away, and the question is more and more pressing: where will you spend your holidays? Or rather, let me rephrase: what’s your summer Insta Story? In 2019, the idea of the vacation as some kind of respite from normal life is entirely by the by.
It’s very much a brand extension, showcasing the freer, more imaginative side of you. You don’t always drink in pubs: sometimes you drink in villas, too! You don’t always take pictures of your dog: sometimes you’ll pet an adorable wild goat! And so on. Time, then, to count down the 10 best ways to spend your very fashy, very filtered summer. And don’t pretend you’ll turn your phone off, that’s very 2018.
1. THE CANERS IN IBIZA
Ibiza isn’t over. Ibiza is never over. Like a fresh vodka tonic, a Missoni kaftan or Kate Moss, it staggers resolutely on, regardless of the vagaries of fashion. Thus it is that you and a bunch of pals gather for your annual villa holiday on the south side of the island. This is a gaggle of old witches who have been going for some 20 years, all the nuts and bolts of the fashion industry (model agents, make-up artists, scary shopping editors), who convene for a week-long pool party–or, rather, sesh. That much-younger lover you’ve brought along can only sit silently in horror as you roll around on an inflatable flamingo, squawking about your tan line and wondering if Dane Bowers is going to swing by. The skin may be starting to sag, darling, but the teeth are still bright. It hasn’t necessarily all gone Pete Tong, but you may go see him DJ sometime in the week, just to get out of the house.
The photo: 17 people in a pool and a lot of smiling (or is that gurning?). Some classic Matthew Williamson beachwear, or maybe just Williamson himself.
2. THE STUDIED RETREAT
There are holidays and there are “breaks”. Holidays are a bit vulgar; breaks are quiet, low-key, understated. As are the various shots from your break in Norfolk, Suffolk or some well-heeled, under-the-radar area of Scotland, because you’ve never been into the obvious. Over a carefully curated few days, you go for long walks, shop for ceramic pots, visit the grave of an obscure 1930s writer and go to The Gunton Arms for some kind of ale pie. The only irritant, really, is that it’s summer, so you can’t feasibly ask for someone to light a fire. You certainly never take any selfies; you tag your boyfriend as a tree. But do calm down, dear, there’s only one Amanda Harlech.
The photo: the mist on the landscape after an alarmingly early morning walk. No caption, maybe a leaf emoji at best. Geotagged to high hell, though.
3. THE ANTI-FASHION TRAWL
There is of course the determinedly obscure holiday, the hair shirt of the bunch, where you visit some former Communist state in search of statues of old dictators and boys with very “Gosha” haircuts. No matter that the food is terrible, the temperature is 17C max and, worst of all, there’s no Soho House branch in sight – this is where you go when you’re not one of those basic people who tan. Or dance. Or smile. But you naturally spend your time posting artfully indie selfies, just to be clear how happy you are to NOT be on the circuit. As the diet of boiled vegetables and stews takes its toll, you look more and more like a budget Lotta Volkova.
The photo: crouching on the steps of some gigantic brutalist folly, doing the peace sign. The colour of the concrete matches the colour of your wardrobe. Slightly tangential caption: “Does anyone else miss mp3s? Lol.”
4. COUNTRY-HOUSE BLOWOUT
Thank God for everyone’s favourite stylist, Constantia, the one who never seems to wash her hair and is always staggering (still) around Dalston. Turns out, despite (or because of) all that, she is filthy rich, in a divine old-money kind of way, and her father has a big old stately pile in Staffordshire. (Mummy isn’t there – they divorced long ago, and Daddy’s on countess number three.) Time for a wonderfully traditional country moment, then, where you can do the customary muddy walk in wellies, the customary black tie dinner and the customary hoof of ketamine in the billiards room, under the watchful eye of the Singer Sargent. Note: Hamish Bowles is liable to appear, genie-style, in a gorgeous lilac suede slipper.
The photo: holding a gun, out shooting on the estate, wearing one of the dead ancestors’ Barbours. Lots of loving shoutouts to @isabella, @jacob, @muffy and @miffy. You disable the comments when someone gets boring about animal rights.
5. LA DOLCE VITA™
Some people have to pay to live the dream, some were simply born into it. That’s what you’re relentlessly semaphoring as you post snaps of yourself lolling about in your grandmother’s Mediterranean beachside house, fishing for sea urchins, playing beach tennis and modelling an unending stream of wicker hats – and then post snaps of you doing the exact same thing some 25 years ago. Underneath it all is a strong sense of tradition, if not to say eerie discipline. Nothing is overdone, or rather overcooked. You drink wine out of very small glasses, you only ever have one scoop of lemon sorbet for dessert, and you even like the taste of grappa! Congratulations. We hate you.
The photo: you hugging an old family member – grandmother, or great-aunt if poss – captioned “#RechargingBatteries #Family #TrueLove!” You’ll use it for a work mood board later in the year.
It’s back! Glasto, like Ibiza, never fades, even if it’s filled with 200,000 midults decked out in Boohoo.com and the headliners are Neil Sedaka and the Stereophonics. But who even cares about the music? From the comfort of the central guest zone, you can enjoy the company of a gallery of multi-hyphenates: model-DJs, DJ-writers, model-presenters, presenter-influencers, actress-activists, actress-disasters. To be frank, though, most of your time is spent nearby at The Pig, waiting for Grimmy to call (you have never camped, and certainly never “glamped”, a terrible invention by the mid-range lady magazines). From the comfort of your bathtub you can cosily text all your dealers and catch the festival highlights on TV.
The photo: Jaime Winstone wearing a boilersuit and bunny ears.
7. THE GOODWILL GLAMBASSADOR
One for the top tier only. What better way to emphasise your semi-regal status than by making a semi-regal visit to a small, mostly neglected state? The reasons for its obscurity aren’t clear, but could have something to do with its generous tax breaks and disdain for human rights. As you cosy up for a photo op with the president, a vague thought clouds your smile: did he really cook his wife? Never mind – he promised to invest heavily in education during a private gala featuring DJ Snake and Enrique Iglesias. No hashtag could sum up your contribution to the world’s wellbeing via this selfless vacay, although you certainly try. You’re putting the “um” in humanitarian, and the “eek” in weekend break.
The photo: “SO honoured to come and meet the beautiful people of XXX [country’s name misspelt] and to understand their culture.”
8. THE BIG, LIKE, OUTDOORS
Don’t you just hate holidays where people, just, like, buy things? It’s so much better to go into some big expanse of California or the Midwest (failing that, Wales), and craft your own retreat. You could have made the stool you’re sitting on; you could have built the whole hut, with the assortment of lovers, ex-lovers and admirers you’ve summoned to join you. You’re certainly not one of those tacky people who live for fashion, although weirdly enough you seem to spend all your time bitching about everyone in it, and you don’t snap anyone present who has dared to put on some weight. Never mind, chuck an old Woolrich blanket and a Patagonia beanie on them, the silhouette will work out the same.
The photo: you, sitting in profile, looking out over a majestic view – never happier but still holding your breath.
9. THE GREEK SUMMIT
Time to head to a Greek island, but which one? You can’t go to Mykonos now: Mykonos, these days, is a meme. Whether it’s Lindsay Lohan doing the hokey cokey at her Beach House resort, or the gays having a monumental scrap at the outdoor beach party, the island is now only best enjoyed via Insta Story. So you head to Hydra with the real A-gays, for a calm villa retreat – or rather, a seething cauldron full of middle-aged semi-open relationships. Is Tony really happy with Adriano, and why does Fabrice always drink too much? Be sure to leave that bedroom door ajar.
The photo: six to eight of you in a pool, perfect bodies, everyone in beautifully fitted swimwear. One woman present, at a push.
Time to clear out all those delicious cobwebs with a very serious spa break, preferably in Oman. You’ve had it with being everyone’s support system back home – time for some serious self-care! That daily schedule in full: wake up (late); massage (long); breakfast, which somehow merges into lunch (even longer). Ten minutes getting bored in the hammam, then drifting towards the terrace for a quick wine. The wine gets longer and larger, too. Jump in the pool, as this is, after all, exercise. Get out and frantically text all your friends over more wine. Set up a boozy Sunday lunch for the minute you arrive back home. Have more wines by the pool, make eyes at the hapless waiter. Pass out in bed reading MailOnline.
The photo: the sausage-legs pose, by a glorious mosaic-tiled pool. The Dan Brown isn’t quite out of shot.
Art by David Lock. The feature was taken from Issue 49 of 10 Men Magazine. NEW ROYALS, RESET, DEMOCRACY is on newsstands now.