While at the bookstore, I picked up The Little Black Book of Style by Nina Garcia. Although Nina is like the Simon Cowell of Project Runway (toughest judge but still my favorite), I didn’t really think I needed fashion advice from Project Runway, because those designs aren’t for real women. But, after flipping through the book, I thought, “why not have a more glamorous wardrobe?”
I actually like Nina’s writing style, which is relaxed & fun. I couldn’t resist buying it when I saw the quotes from Ernest Hemingway, Mark Twain, and Elizabeth Taylor. One of my favorite quotes, which I think came from a PR episode, is from Michael Kors- “Put on a trench, you’re suddenly Audrey Hepburn walking along the Seine.” I also loved the section on film fashion which discussed some of my favorites: Katherine Hepburn, Audrey Hepburn, and Grace Kelly, and introduced me to some potential new ones. I’m pretty sure when I Netflix Scarface, my husband won’t know it is to scope out the dresses. The book is also worth getting for the beautiful illustrations. Plus whenever I think of the book I say Nina’s name in my head in my best Heidi Klum impersonation.
So how is the actual style advice? Not bad so far. I’m only working on Basic #1- How to Edit. Nina advocates for clearing out your closet and getting rid of everything you don’t look good in. That advice works for me, because I move every few years, I’m always editing so that my house doesn’t grow unruly. In the course of paring down, I saw these linen pants in my closet.
My first instinct was that they should go in the Goodwill pile. But I do love their fit and linen is a godsend here in Puerto Rico. I’m just bored with the light green that fades more every year, making them look like pajama bottoms. So I decided to rip out the fusible hem-tape I ironed in six years ago, to hem them properly and to dye them darker. Although I don’t have a live-in seamstress like Nina’s mom, I think I did OK. I guess I was also a bit inspired from sites like Wardrobe Refashion, and the Compai books I’ve been reading lately.
I dyed them using Navy Blue Rit. They ended up a faded indigo color (I used 4 boxes of dye, but also dyed 4 other clothing items). I’ve heard that nylon doesn’t dye and now I have proof- I still have green thread outlining the pockets! But I don’t mind- I now wear these pants every week.
Back to the closet for more editing….