Dress to kill? Not really. It’s my desire to get out of the house well put together even when I am wearing very casual clothes. If my soul is happy I am happy too, if my eyes are pleased I am pleased too and if my attire can strike a conversation and produce business, I will be even happier. Yesterday, I was dressed as I look in the picture.
I was browsing in a department store, looking for curiosities nothing in particular. At one moment a woman approached me asking for my opinion about some clothes she was thinking of buying. She said “I was well put together” and that was good enough for her to feel confident the opinion of a stranger was going to have a weight on her buying decision.
I explained to her from the point of view of a designer (but she didn’t know it at that moment) and with simple words why she should have bought one thing versus the other. Then someone else was listening and she got closer to really listen in. Then another woman got closer and more women arrived I don’t know from where. Pretty soon I had a small crowd asking my opinion on a variety of decisions and style for them. I should have asked the store to hire me as their fashion consultant!
The reason my outfit attracted people and their interest, was not just the inviting, summer yellow color of my hat.
There are rules for dressing up as there are rules for decorating homes. One can use them to the letter in a strict way, or as guidelines. The important think is to know how to create balance, rhythm and harmony. Those women even without knowing the fashion subject, sensed it I had it all together and felt naturally attracted by my energy.
In my outfit I have all three elements. White is not a good color for my face, but it is needed in the summer to keep cool, thus to balance my figure I put it on the bottom part of my body. The white and dark blue stripes of my top create a rhythm because they go in three different directions; the ruched sides of this top are perfect to disguise and trick the eye just like the effect of trompe-l’oeil designs in homes. The top had to be long enough to cover my bottom, as white tends to enlarge areas where nature has played very generously. My purse, sandals and sunglasses are dark blue. However, without the element of surprise, that “vintage sunny yellow hat”, this ensemble would have been a common mise and it would not have sparked conversation in the store.
This is how I do it, I live my life with simple rules or common sense, as I like to refer to.
• Wearing a griffe on the clothes doesn’t make me feel more important. I know who I am and how I can help people, the griffe does absolutely nothing for me.
• Any common outfit can be dressed up with eccentric or interesting details.
• Personalize my mises as much as possible, not because I demand attention, my brain tells me it I am not interested in looking like everybody else.
• When using colors I keep it down to three and use only 10% of one of the three. In the outfit in the photo, my 10% is the yellow.
• Wear colors that exalt my personality and make me feel good, regardless of fashion dictum.
Designing to me is building. In designing a personal image I build personal style; in designing a home I built harmony and in designing food or tables I build flavors. Voila’ I am here and prompt as ever to help. Consultations on-line are available. Ciao,
Copyright © 2013 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved
Valentina Cirasola is a trained Fashion and Interior Designer, working in the USA and Europe. Born in Italy and in a family of artists, style surrounded her since the beginning of her life. Her many years of experience in fashion and interior designing led her to offer consultations in both specializations and now she can create your personal image or your private space. She is the author of three books. Get your copy of Valentina’s book on colors: RED-A Voyage Into Colors available on