To Wear Perchance to Read

I was in the RSC gift shop recently and I noticed some little, white baby-grows emblazoned with the words To Sleep Perchance To Dream.  “Look!” I squawked elbowing my friend. His reply shocked me. Instead of the expected snigger at this inappropriate legend, he dissolved into an “AWW! How sweet!”
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The slogan comes from what is possibly Hamlet’s most famous speech, in which he contemplates his own death. To sleep, in this case, means to die, and the supposedly cutesy dreams that the RSC are wishing the babies of their customers are the unknown horrors which prevent Hamlet from plunging into that eternal sleep.

The RSC should know better, but Topshop are a different kettle of fish. Too old for the RSC’s macabre baby-grow, but still want to wear non-sensical, Shakespeare-related clothing? Try this white crop top which says Something Wicked this way comes.  My sister assures me that this (barely a) t-shirt implies the wearer is a little bit naughty, and therefore sexy. To me it implies that the wearer suffers from vaulting ambition and may just kill some old men. )

The message is clear: it doesn’t matter what it says if it’s Shakespeare. Perhaps Topshop’s next endeavour will be a line of frilly knickers with The Nasty Sty or The Sulphurous Pit embroidered onto the front. “Aww! How Sweet!”

Photograph by Peter Marsh at ashmorevisuals


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