It’s never quite been clear where Great British Bake Off lies on the cool scale. Like okay, it obviously isn’t ‘cool’ by any of the markers you(we) hip Londoners hold your(our) selves to - its a show about baking in a tent filled with as many Carry On-esque double entendres as it is Union Jack flags ffs. But God, if ever there was a show to so joyously ignore coolness, safe in the conviction that its heartwarming values and wonderful, gentle execution were enough to carry it onto the unlicensed iPlayer streams of millennials across east London, then this is it.
Having said all that, we think Mary Berry is cool. Not just because she’s the grandmother we never knew we wanted or needed (as The Guardian put it recently, ‘the stern-fair-kind grandmother’), and not just because of the way she simultaneously counters the brusqueness of Paul Hollywood and anchors the saucy puns of co-hosts Mel and Sue. It’s not even the absolute class she portrayed in announcing that she would be staying loyal to the BBC and not following the Bake Off money over to Channel 4 when it sadly departs for the advert-funded channel next year.
All of those things would be enough to endear us to her of course, but what really gets her a place upon the hallowed grounds of the Floom Magazine is of course the way she rocks the absolute living daylights out of a floral jacket. Most notably there was THAT bomber jacket from Zara, which surely wasn’t designed with an 81-year old cake-maker in mind but nevertheless sold out instantly after Mary wore it on one episode. There’s something great about older woman co-opting (and completely owning) fashion that supposedly isn’t ‘meant’ for them - see Whoopi Goldberg looking better in Vetements than any spotty blogger you’ve ever bumped into on the Kingsland Road for another example.
Anyway, here’s to Mary Berry! In all her floral glory.