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April 3, 2007

Dressed To Excess

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Party Dressing

Photo Credit: Cleo Glyde

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Another time, we went to an opera gala in Paris dressed in homage to A Midsummer Night’s Dream, draped in forest-green fabric over ballet leggings. We stretched stockings over wire hangers to make fairy wings and glided up the ornate marble staircase triumphant—having clocked up a grand total of 30 bucks on our outfits.
I transformed myself for every occasion. However, I did learn along the way that the farther out on a limb you go, the more likely it is to snap. Context is everything: A skintight Bob Mackie number covered in bugle beads is pure showbiz—but shameless limelight- hogging if you’re at a wedding. I violated this no-grandstanding code when I took my demented-heiress look to a French country-house party, entering in a corseted evening gown crookedly accented with a blue fox fur and a hat with a net. As it turned out, I was playing against the crowd in a very wrong way. Amid the worn knits, cozy slacks, droopy hems, and baggy corduroy, I suddenly looked like Witchiepoo from H.R. Pufnstuf, alienating everyone.


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