Dress Up

Nothing to wear? Probably not quite true, but wouldn’t it be easier if we just streamlined our wardrobes to 50 must have pieces? That’s what I’m doing anyway...

Ten Wardrobe Rules and some inspiration from Carine Roitfeld

Last night I went with my sis and daughter to see Maidemoiselle C at the French Film Festival. It’s a charming doco that follows my favourite living fashion icon ex French Vogue editor Carine Roitfeld, as she creates and launches her new fashion project – the CR Fashion Book.

A far more accessible and authentic character than US Vogue’s Anna Wintour, Carine Roitfeld is described in the film as “stylish thoughtful and loving”. Her belief is that fashion imagery is a window into a fantasy world – why celebrate the “girl next door look” when fashion can take us into another world. I think of this as I write my last Dress Up post.

What started as a practical journey to trim my wardrobe down to 50 essentials, has ended up being a little different. Sure, on a pragmatic front, I have cleared my wardrobe of the garments I hated and only filled it with things I like . As a result my cost per wear on new expensive garments has dropped considerably. I have also saved time by deleting mindless clothes shopping from my life since I already know the stores I like – Gorman and Country Road, Karen walker for sunglasses, shopbop.com etc.

Because I now always wear things I like I usually feel good, another bonus.

But now I want to add garments that have the power to take me to a whole new place. And this is where I am thinking about Carine Roitfeld’s love for “fashion beyond clothes”. Exceptional garments push your boundaries.


Divine Mademoiselle C

For instance I met my friend Viv for coffee last week and she swanned in wearing a dropdead gorgeous Pucci dress – super sophisticated and completely fabulous. The whole look was inspiring and I could have been talking to her in a café in Capri rather than one in Shortland Street Auckland.

Again, I was at a seminar recently when someone I know walked into the room (which was full of well dressed women) wearing an original Dianne Von Furstenburg wrap dress – she stood out, a cut above all others, as if she had just flown in first class from New York.

So now I have a good wardrobe, I am saving up for a few timeless pieces that will make it great. I don’t know when I will get these but I already have my fantasy wardrobe planned – Pucci will feature heavily, accented by accessories such as a Cartier Tank watch.

Anyway before I disappear into fantasyland, I thought I would wrap up this part of the blog with my ten wardrobe rules that came to me over the past year or so:

Rule Number One: Don’t try and get your list down to 50 items. While it’s possible it might be a little dull.

Rule Number Two: Don’t buy it because it’s cheap; buy it because you love it and you need it. While brings me on to……

..Rule Number Three: Write a list of what you need and shop from this

Rule Number Four: Ignore fashion trends, buy what you like (Carine Roitfeld agrees btw)

Rule Number Five: If you have no idea what suits you, get a personal stylist (email me if you want names). I have never used one but I have seen those that have and the huge difference it makes.

Rule Number Six: Invest in fabulous accessories. Karen Walker sunglasses and a decent handbag for starters. And a string of decent pearls I think. These three things will have you looking like Jackie O in no time.

Rule Number Seven: Only read decent fashion magazines. Not weekly trash. Stop that nonsense now. Enjoy Vogue every month Get to understand fashion and how it informs popular culture and vice versa. You’ll get a new appreciation of the clothes you wear.

Rule Number Eight: Have a style icon or look in mind. I love Carine Roifeld’s Parisian chic. But my fantasy look is definitely the Michael Kors meets Pucci International Jet Setter look.

Michael Kors Jet Set fab

Pucci Zebra print, love this look

Pucci Zebra print, love this look

Rule Number Nine: Invest in a fabulous classic suit. It’s true. Just do it.

Rule Number Ten: If you have to ask “does my bum look big in this” you are not buying the right clothes. I haven’t asked that in over a year and my bum is still the same size. Buy clothes you love – your bum will sort itself out if you feel great.

Trust you are looking and feeling fabulous.


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