Say No to the Dress: Why Women Are Trading Gowns for Wedding Suits | Kanebridge News
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Say No to the Dress: Why Women Are Trading Gowns for Wedding Suits

Bianca Jagger stunned onlookers when she opted to wear a Yves Saint Laurent skirt suit to wed Mick in 1971—an unconventional look that’s more relevant than ever. How to conjure her subversive style.

Fri, Mar 17, 2023 8:00amGrey Clock 3 min

ON MAY 12, 1971, Nicaraguan socialite Bianca Pérez-Mora Macías married Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger in a shotgun wedding in Saint-Tropez. (Bianca was four months pregnant with their daughter Jade.) Mr. Jagger flew in many of the estimated 75 guests on a chartered plane with only a day’s notice, and such superstars as Brigitte Bardot, Paul McCartney and Ronnie Wood attended. Although the union disintegrated after seven years, and Bianca told Vanity Fair in 1986 that “a rock star is the worst husband a woman could have,” her wedding went down in rock ’n’ roll history. Not only did she wed one of the era’s biggest heartthrobs, she shunned froufrou wedding gowns and opted for a risqué white suit by Yves Saint Laurent. The jacket exposed her bare chest; the bias-cut skirt concealed her pregnant belly; the veiled floppy hat projected a breezy sort of drama; and platform sandals punctuated the look.

While the outfit might not provoke comment now, it did then—in part because Ms. Jagger wore nothing beneath the plunging jacket. “It was really risky to not only have a jacket instead of a dress, but this huge décolleté,” said Florence Müller, an art and fashion historian who curated the 2010 exhibition “Yves Saint Laurent: The Retrospective” at Paris’s Petit Palais. Ms. Müller suggested that Ms. Jagger’s suit might have been an offshoot of the late Saint Laurent’s subversive spring 1971 couture collection. Known as “La Collection du Scandale,” it took inspiration from sex workers who frequented Paris’s Bois de Boulogne and from silhouettes popularised during the German occupation of France in the 1940s.

More than 50 years later, Ms. Jagger’s confidently unconventional suit feels newly relevant. Even before the Covid era, which upended countless couples’ wedding plans and called for less-formal celebrations, women were embracing alternatives to the prim white wedding gown. Just look at model and author Emily Ratajkowski, who cited Ms. Jagger’s wedding ensemble as an influence when she chose a mustard Zara suit and a veiled brown hat for her 2018 wedding.

In a recent 2,000-person survey by market-research agency OnePoll, one in five respondents agreed that the white wedding dress is a dated tradition. “The prospect of wearing a fluffy white dress was frankly embarrassing to me,” admitted Kaelin Goulet, 37, who works in consulting in New York. For her October 2022 wedding, Ms. Goulet enlisted Isabel Wilkinson Schor, founder of New York brand Attersee, to tailor the label’s ivory vest and matching trousers to perfection. “I wanted to be comfortable and to be able to rewear my outfit,” said Ms. Goulet. “My mom wore a white shirtdress when she and my dad wed in 1984, and I have vivid memories from my childhood of her wearing her ‘wedding dress’ to work on summer days.”

For a bridal suit, “fit is critical,” said New York stylist Micaela Erlanger. “It’s about being effortless,” she said, but there’s a difference between “relaxed elegance” and looking sloppy. Ms. Erlanger condones sets by brands including Danielle Frankel and Ralph Lauren, both of which deliver “exquisite tailoring.” New York bridal stylist Anny Choi, meanwhile, advocates looking beyond typical bridal brands, noting that New York designer Christopher John Rogers offers refreshing options. Going nontraditional, she added, doesn’t mean buying the trendiest thing off the runway. “Subtle yet impactful styling choices”—like Ms. Jagger’s decision to forgo a blouse and add a sun hat—will make the outfit, she said.

The fact that Ms. Jagger’s suit echoed her new husband’s three-piece—blurring gender lines—made it all the more memorable. “Bianca made this combination modern and sexy and really feminized [the] jacket,” which was largely reserved for men at the time, said Ms. Choi. Bicoastal gallerist Caroline Luce similarly subverted gender aesthetics in her 2020 Big Sur wedding. Ms. Luce, 37, who was originally set on a suit, found her dream bridal outfit in a black Ralph Lauren tuxedo dress. “Having my own version of a black tuxedo was a perfect balance to [my husband] Nino’s tuxedo,” said Ms. Luce. “It felt like such an elegant but understated way to enter into this next chapter of our lives—visually in tandem, side by side in simple suits.”

In her Yves Saint Laurent suit, Ms. Jagger was a woman who knew her power. Its “rebellious attitude,” Ms. Choi suggested, explains “why brides today continue to reference this look.”

The Wall Street Journal is not compensated by retailers listed in its articles as outlets for products. Listed retailers frequently are not the sole retail outlets.


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The Strongest Protection for Your Online Accounts? This Little Key

Passwords aren’t enough to fend off hackers; these dongles are the best defense

Mon, Mar 27, 2023 4 min

Strong passwords are very important, but they’re not enough to protect you from cybercriminals.

Passwords can be leaked or guessed. The key to online security is protecting your account with a strong secondary measure, typically a single-use code. This is referred to as “two-factor authentication,” or 2FA, as the nerds know it.

I’ve written about all the different types of 2FA, such as getting those codes sent via text message or generated in an authenticator app. Having any kind of second factor is better than none at all, but physical security keys—little dongles that you plug into a USB port or tap on your phone during account logins—offer the highest level of protection.

Security keys have been around for over a decade, but now they’re in the spotlight: Apple recently introduced support for them as an optional, added protection for Apple ID accounts. Last month, Twitter removed text-message-based authentication as an option for nonpaying users, recommending instead an authenticator app or security key.

Some people are hesitant to use security keys because carrying around a physical object seems burdensome and they come with a $30-and-up added cost. Plus, what happens if they get lost?

I’ve used security keys since 2016 and think they are actually easier to manage than codes—especially with accounts that don’t require frequent logins. They’re not only convenient, but they can’t be copied or faked by hackers, so they’re safer, too.

Here’s how to weigh the benefits and common concerns of adding one or two of these to your keychain.

Which security key should I use?

Many internet services support the use of security keys, and you can use the same security key to unlock accounts on many different services. I recommend two from industry leader Yubico:

  • YubiKey 5C NFC ($US55) if you have a USB-C laptop or tablet
  • YubiKey 5 NFC ($US50) for devices with older USB ports

Other options include Google’s Titan security keys ($30 and up). In addition to working with laptops and tablets with USB ports, these keys are compatible with smartphones that have NFC wireless. Most smartphones these days have that, since it’s the technology behind wireless payments such as Apple Pay.

Adam Marrè, chief information security officer at cybersecurity firm Arctic Wolf, recommends that your chosen key is certified by the FIDO Alliance, which governs the standards of these devices.

How do security keys work?

To add a key, look in the security settings of your major accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Google, etc.). During setup, it will prompt you to insert the key into your laptop or tablet’s port or hold the key close to your phone for wireless contact.

Apple requires you to add two security keys to your Apple ID account, in case you lose one.

Typically, when you log in, you just go to the app or website where you’ve set up a key, enter your username and password as usual, then once again insert the key into the device or hold it close. (Some keys have a metal tab you have to press to activate.) At that point, the service should let you right in.

Why are they so secure?

Getting those two-factor login codes via text message is convenient, but if you are someone criminals are targeting, you could be the victim of SIM swapping. That’s where thieves convince carriers to port your number to a new phone in their possession, and they use it along with your stolen password to hack your accounts.

Even if they don’t go to all that trouble, criminals might try to trick you to hand them your codes, by calling you or spoofing a website you typically visit. At that point they can use the code for about 60 seconds to try to break in, said Ryan Noon, chief executive at security firm Material Security.

Security keys protect you in two ways: First, there’s no code to steal, and second, they use a security protocol to verify the website’s domain during login, so they won’t work on fake sites.

You can also add an authenticator app such as Authy to your most important accounts, to use only as a backup. But once you add these secure methods, you should consider removing the text-message code option.

In the rare case that someone snoops your passcode then steals your iPhone, beware: The perpetrator could still make Apple ID account changes using only the passcode, and even remove security keys from your account.

What happens if you lose your key?

The most important rule of security keys is to buy an extra one (or two).

“Think of your security key as you would a house or car key,” said Derek Hanson, Yubico’s vice president of solutions architecture. “It’s always recommended that you have a spare.”

If you lose a security key, remove it from your accounts immediately. You should have already registered your spare or an authenticator app as a backup to use in the meantime.

Where can you use a security key?

Start with your most valuable accounts: Google, Apple, Microsoft, your password manager, your social–media accounts and your government accounts.

When it comes to financial institutions, many banks don’t offer security-key protection as an option, though most leading crypto exchanges do.

What comes after security keys?

Security professionals and tech companies widely agree that passkeys are the future. They’re a new type of software option that combines the high security of a physical key with the convenience of biometrics such as your face or fingerprints. Passkeys are supported across the Android, iOS, Mac and Windows platforms, and some of your favourite sites already let you use them.

You can create a passkey on Facebook in security settings by following the app’s instructions under the security-key option. Dropbox has a similar passkey setup. Once you’re done, you’ll use your face or fingerprint as a second factor, instead of a code or key.

Eventually, physical security keys could be what we keep safe in strong boxes, as backups for our biometric-enabled passkeys. Even then, you’re probably going to want to have spares.

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