There is a scene in the movie The Devil Wears Prada where the antagonist Miranda Priestly, played by powerhouse Meryl Streep. delivers what can only be described as a monologue of epic proportion. She delivers a scathing response to Andy Sachs, played by Ann Hathaway, regarding the journey of a colour. Of course, it is dramatic and over the top, but I dare say there’s an ounce of truth in it.
Miranda Priestly: Where are the belts for this dress? Why is no-one ready?
Jocelyn: Here. It’s a tough call. They’re so different.
Andy Sachs: (snickers under her breath)
Miranda Priestly: Something funny?
Andy Sachs: No. No, no, nothing ... you know, it’s just that ... both those belts look exactly the same to me. Y’know, I’m still learning about this stuff, and uh... (giggles uncomfortably)
Miranda Priestly: This ... ‘stuff’? Oh, OK. I see, you think this has nothing to do with you.
You ... go to your closet, and you select ... I don’t know, that lumpy blue sweater for instance, because you’re trying to tell the world that you take yourself too seriously to care about what you put on your back, but what you don’t know is that that sweater is not just blue, it’s not turquoise, it’s not lapis, it’s actually cerulean.
You’re also blithely unaware of the fact that, in 2002, Oscar de la Renta did a collection of cerulean gowns, and then I think it was Yves Saint Laurent — wasn't it? — who showed cerulean military jackets. I think we need a jacket here.
Miranda Priestly: And then cerulean quickly showed up in the collections of eight different designers. Then it filtered down through the department stores, and then trickled on down into some tragic casual corner where you, no doubt, fished it out of some clearance bin.
However, that blue represents millions of dollars of countless jobs, and it’s sort of comical how you think that you’ve made a choice that exempts you from the fashion industry, when in fact, you’re wearing a sweater that was selected for you by the people in this room ... from a pile of ‘stuff’.