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Monday, November 19, 2012

Designer Stacy Lomman, who has been giving me wardrobe therapy, was flummoxed by one characteristic of my closet: a dearth of tops and a plethora of bottoms. She expected to find twice as many tops as bottoms, but I had the reverse. Tops are usually the hot item in stores. She explained, “It’s just easy for women to buy a new top and change a look completely (keeping the same bottom).  And generally, there are just so many more options and categories when it comes to tops — sweaters, fine gauge knits, cut & sew knits, woven blouses, etc.”

She added, “Usually, [designers are] happy to introduce maybe one new ‘fashion’ pant or skirt per season which will become a big hit in addition to their more ‘staple’ or basic bottoms they offer over and over (and sell season after season).”

But I’ve got rainbow skirts, chartreuse skirts, word skirts … and a whole lot of black t-shirts that I’ve relied on for everyday wear since I left the corporate world. The question is, what the hell did I wear above the waist before? I haven’t gotten rid of that much. In fact, I have nearly all my suits, which Stacy has been busy restyling for me. I have do have some tops that were purchased to go with specific suits. I also have various black, non-t-shirt tops which I wore with anything, regardless of fabric weight, texture, and so on.  After reviewing my old suits, it seems to me that I have a lot that button up high enough so that I could wear them with no shirt under them, per the first photo in this post. I now think I should write a memoir called Topless at Lehman Brothers or maybe I Lost My Shirt at Lehman Brothers. That’s sure to be a best-seller.

Anyway, Stacy told me I had to quit going topless and go shopping instead. Last week, we swung by Bergdorf Goodman for an hour while on our way to visit our designing friend Zang Toi, who has a showroom across the street. Our immediate goal was to get something to finish up the outfit that Stacy wanted me to wear to the Columbia Media Conference on Saturday. One of the conference hosts was Columbia University’s undergraduate newspaper, the Spectator. I’m the chairman of Spectator’s board of alumni trustees, plus MrB was one of the speakers on the first panel. (To my amusement, the Spectator student editors booked him for their conference without enlisting my assistance. Very independent of them!)

I have a horror of “crisp, white shirts” and “shells,” so Stacy tempted me with a neon-pink, sleeveless top by Ramy Brook. She knows I can’t resist neon pink. I’ve been in love with it since 1984.

WendyB in 1984. Click to see my other neon pieces.

She paired the new pink top with pieces I’ve had in my wardrobe for years.

What Wendy Wore – Stacy Lomman Outfit #6
Jacket: Dolce & Gabbana (2003)
Top: Ramy Brook (2012)
Pants: Versace (2003/2004, previously seen here)
Shoes: Miu Miu (2010)
Purse: Prada (2007)

When I’m not moving around, that top has a nice, sharp v-neck. Unfortunately, I didn’t have a stylist to tape it down and make it perfect for this photo. Alas! I still felt great. I’d worn these pants with one of two simple black sweaters till now and it was good to see it jazzed up with color.

The next night’s outfit didn’t require any new purchases, but it still felt fresh to me. We had dinner with author Cheryl Tan (formerly a fashion reporter at the Wall Street Journal) and her husband Mike Hale of the New York Times. It was a good excuse to dig out a Wall Street Journal-printed top that I rarely get to wear. Stacy put this with a glen-plaid skirt from a suit that I haven’t worn since 2004 and finished it up with my crazy robot-sneaker-looking shoes.

What Wendy Wore – Stacy Lomman Outfit #7
Top: Unlicensed Wall Street Journal top (2002-ish)
Skirt: Lolita Lempicka from Allan & Suzi’s (1993-ish)
Tights: Who knows!
Shoes: Hogan (2009, recently seen here)
Purse: Prada (2007)

Before the wardrobe therapy sessions, I only wore the Hogan shoes with jeans. People occasionally admired them, but nothing like what has happened recently, when I’ve worn the shoes with skirts. Cheryl noticed them right away. More surprisingly, when I wore the shoes to my meeting with Vogue last week, my doorman, various construction workers and the dude who loiters on my corner were all in awe of my footwear. And, believe me, I don’t normally talk shoes with those fellows.  Nice work, Stacy.

If you’re in the New York area and want to book Stacy for wardrobe therapy, you can get in touch with her through Cross It Off Your List. If you live outside the tri-state region, you can email her for a Skype session through her website. She’ll change your life!

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25 Responses to “Stacy Lomman Wardrobe Therapy: Outfits #6 and #7”

  1. Amanda says:

    Love the pink shirt with those pants and jacket. A great way to give it a pop. You look stylish and professional. Good job Stacy.

    • WendyB
      Twitter: WendyBrandes
      says:

      And without wearing a “crisp, white shirt” — though I did tell Stacy I would humor her and try some of those on. Maybe one will finally appeal to me.

  2. stacy says:

    I needed a dictionary to get through that first sentence (kidding!). I love your old pix… you were (and are) sooo adorbs.
    I wish I would have given you some fashion tape for that blouse, but the sliver of color looks great!!!
    Very happy with your purchase!!

    • WendyB
      Twitter: WendyBrandes
      says:

      I was going to use “WTF” instead of “flummoxed” but I decided to be pretentious. I have so much fashion tape myself, it’s silly I didn’t think of it!

      • K-Line says:

        Peeps aren’t using the word “flummoxed” nearly often enough. And Stacy – your styling is inspired. I mean, Wendy’s got a killer wardrobe (if low on tops) and a terrific shape to dress, but you are really revitalizing her lovely look. You should live in TO for half the year!

      • WendyB
        Twitter: WendyBrandes
        says:

        I definitely feel refreshed by all Stacy’s work.

  3. Alice Olive says:

    Those Versace pants are hot! You rock them!

  4. Tina says:

    Very impressed with the “new” ensembles!

  5. Megan Mae says:

    OMGGGG those pants are so awesome. Score for Stacy! She’s pulled some great picks from your closet.

    Also a plus/minus sign earring would be such a great idea. I could totally see Nubbytwiglet wearing the plus!

  6. Sheila says:

    I love both of these outfits! I have had similar issues with not enough tops in my wardrobe in the past – I’ve had to deliberately cull out some of my plainer skirts and force myself to look for tops that will jazz them up.

    You look great in that hot pink! Those pants are exquisite. The sneaker/shoes are amazing – and I’m so glad you are showing them off more with a skirt! They deserve to be noticed – and so do you! Brava, Stacy and well done, Wendy!

  7. Stacy, nice work! Wendy, I wuv that 1984 photo you.

  8. Melanie says:

    Stacy does great work. I love these outfits, especially the wedge sneaker with the skirt and that cool top. I’m like you – lots of bottoms, but where oh where are all the tops? I shall follow your lead, via Stacy, and get more!

  9. Suz says:

    It makes me smile to see the name Lolita Lempicka again. The pink is amazing with those pants, great pop of color with a b/w graphic.

  10. Couture Carrie
    Twitter: couturecarrie
    says:

    Amazing looks!
    Love the vintage WB shot too :)

    xoxox,
    CC

  11. sulky kitten says:

    Stacy is a genius – but she has great material to work with! I love her new outfits on you. You and the gorgeous dog – priceless. I don’t think I could still fit into clothing from last month never mind 2003!

  12. Marla says:

    Love those plaid pants and Hogan shoes!!

  13. pao says:

    Interesting dilemma. I’ve actually not figured the bottoms to tops ratio in my closet. hmm, wonder how I’m doing there… Of course, I just mash everything together anyhow! All your ensembles look classy!

  14. Marti says:

    Yay!! There’s another woman on this planet that likes neon pink aside from me. It looks Fab peeking out of that Black Blazer, the entire outfit is sharp!!
    Stacy does a great job putting together all of these outfits. The last time I was at Bergdorf’s in NYC I had left my favorite lip color at home so I had to run in to get a new Laura Mercier lipstick. That was in 1999 can’t believe how fast time flies.
    Marti

  15. Very, very nice work, Stacy! And hats off to your good taste, too, Wendy. You bought the goods – someone just needed to bring them out of hiding :)

  16. Love your pants! I love that she worked with what you already owned and make it new again!

  17. Love, love 1980s photos of you. I agree with Stacy that it’s easier to keep bottoms uniform and change tops.