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November 27, 2007

Clothes-minded—November 27, 2007

It is better to give than receive. Or so we’re often told. Especially around the holidays, this do-gooder mantra is chanted often. In ways of style advice, whether ’tis better to give or receive really depends on who you are. If you are eternally chic, it would be a sin not to give. However, if you flail among the passé trends, it is better to wait your turn in the makeover thread line. At Harper’s Bazaar, Diana Vreeland made her “Why Don’t You…” column famous by posing novel ways for the Bazaar reader to dress and live. We’ve arrived in late November, and in the spirit of giving the Diana Vreeland way, why don’t you…:

Wear your outfit inside out? This is not to say simply reverse the pieces and sport your shirt with tags facing out, but rather wear your slip as the top layer. Boudoir chic is calling for a comeback. Elegant underpinnings need not be reserved for the dressing room. Layers of silk and satin skirt slips and camisoles have just the offbeat sophistication holiday fêtes call for.

Tie your hair back with a bracelet? It’s horribly restricting to believe bracelets are made just for the wrist. If they were meant to be confined to the wrist they would have been called wristlets. Bracelet calls to mind some form of a mini-brace, not adornment specifically for the wrist. And if one’s hair is in need of bracing, by all means do so with some charm—in bracelet form.

Don gloves with a short-sleeve shirt? A gorgeous pair of gloves is not just for the outdoors. When you arrive at your destination, don’t let the pressure of coat check strip you of your ladylike trims. In leather or satin, gloves sans coat are an all too rare sight nowadays. Modernize the past and pair dark jeans with a black T-shirt and leather eggplant driving gloves for a simple, polished ensemble.

Stick a feather in your cap? Feathers are fabulous additions to nearly any lackluster outfit. Let feathers be your crowning glory. A mile-high, jet-black plume in an of-the-moment cloche hat is daringly delightful. It is also a great way for your acquaintances to track you at festive soirées. Topped with plumage, you’ll look chic and be able to keep your friends in tow—all while visions of Yankee Doodle dance in your head.

Paint your nails navy? Nothing has the allure of the midnight sky like a deep noir blue. Channel the hours of risqué provocation with a varnish that is sure to thrill. A little bit dark, but radiant nonetheless, midnight blue is striking and far too alluring to be left up in the air.

Exercise in diamonds? You can think of the scads of glittering jewels around your neck as extra weight training. Being at the gym is no reason to forgo accessories. Let a canary-diamond ring shine through your workout. Pin a brilliant brooch onto your sneaker and prepare to be dazzled when it shines clearly, even in fluorescent light. Swap out sweatbands for tiaras and go the extra mile.

Wear two watches? Why add and subtract the hours to the east and west when you can prominently display the time for here and there at the same time. Put together silver and gold, metal and leather, sporty and refined—the list could go on and on and on. There are just so many ways to harmonize the watch duet, one could never tire of the combination. Pair an oversized gold men’s watch with a dainty bracelet timepiece for an unexpected union. Shouldn’t two stylish watches beat just one? We could all use more time, after all.

Go ahead and start something new at the end of this quarter, why don’t you?