A Trend of Indiscretion a.k.a ‘Showing Off’

In I spied... on July 26, 2010 at 12:29 am

Billionaire Heiresses and Civilians alike– We’re All Doing it…

Illustration by Alexa Hughes

“Not many 22-year-old girls live in their own five-floor Eaton Square townhouse. But Petra Ecclestone isn’t most girls,” writes Richard Dennen for the introduction to his article for Tatler magazine on the youngest daughter of Formula One magnate, Bernie Ecclestone. In a page-length photograph, the arguably thinorexic platinum blonde is perched on a vintage Louis Vuitton trunk, smiling sweetly if not slightly pained, through the camera lens.

Petra Ecclestone in Tatler, August 2010

The questionable title of the  feature is “In Fashion”. Over a two page waste of space spread, Dennen takes note of her Rolex Daytona, St. Tropez tan, extensive shoe collection and not much else. With a sense of style centering around the ability to ensure each garment features a certain measure of bling, Petra’s most profound statement of the editorial indigestion was that she “wasn’t too keen on matt nails…I prefer the glossed look.”

Any mention of career aspirations? Charity work? Well she was charitable enough to offer the job of installing a cinema room and two walk-in wardrobes to a relatively unknown interior designer, does that count? Before I come across too scathingly, let’s just say I was rather unimpressed with the article.

Tamara Ecclestone for Moussaieff Jewellery

With her older sister Tamara sitting slightly more airbrushed a few pages prior, wearing a 146 karat necklace for a Moussaieff jewellery advertisement, clearly neither member of the family is publicity shy– or to be more specific, neither family member is shy about flaunting an image of extravagant wealth.

To be fair, I’m picking on Ecclestone; singling her out. Tatler has developed a bad habit in recent years of profiling young, leggy heiresses with nothing to say, on a monthly basis. The classic attempt to appear modest about their inherited wealth fails miserably before I’ve even begun reading for the obvious reason that each one of them absolutely agreed to sit for an interview/photoshoot with none other than a society journalist. The outfit planning sessions, the pre-shoot starvation diets and sleepless nights are all taken very seriously– it’s just a shame we won’t be taking them very seriously when the article is published.

Paris Hilton recently tweeted this picture along with snaps of herself posing on a private jet

In an era where Paris Hilton spewing her latest life tips just doesn’t cut it anymore, why are these people still making it onto the pages of the world’s most highly consumed publications? I admittedly consume more glossy Condé Naste publications than I do books but that doesn’t mean I don’t want to read about people and things that inspire me rather than tire me. It seems to me that media like this breeds an attitude that is nothing short of poisonous, provokes low ambition, laziness and let me just put it out there–a gold-digging culture (male and female alike).

The word I’m looking for here is discretion. It’s a lesson most of us could do with a refresher on– including myself (I’m starting with a cut-down on personal Facebook uploads). Take this weekend’s annual Cartier Polo extravaganza for example. In the days building up to the ‘posh’ Surrey event, social network statuses read like a review of who can boast the most. “Who needs a lift to the Cartier Polo? Got room for one more in the car,” said one tweeter masking their gloat with a seemingly kind but more accurately, empty gesture. Within minutes of the event’s start, mobile uploads were popping up all over my news feeds with camera phone snaps taken to disclose exactly where they are– and you aren’t. Take heed boys and girls, at least wait until we get home to upload and use the time wisely to actually experience what we’ve shelled out the cash for! Whether it be your wealth, your whereabouts or your watch collection (you wouldn’t believe some of the stuff people will upload to their social networking accounts), discretion is always the more sensible path. There is nothing more attractive than someone who, despite their fortunes in life, remains humble, somewhat anonymous and thus totally mysterious. Something like Johnny Depp 😉



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