Welcome to the first installment of Social Studies: Style in Sarasota–fashion inspiration by real people in real time. And! We’re not just at parties anymore–we’re looking for you on the street.
Meet my fellow style spotter, Cat Pennenga. She’s a talented photog and art director with a creative eye who also directs, produces and styles fashion shows. Check out her site at catpennenga.com or see her street shots below–one could very well be of you!
RINGLING INTERNATIONAL ARTS FESTIVAL
Just thought I’d share a quick side note about Meklit from the RIAF program book–Manthia Diawara, director of the Institute of Afro-American Affairs/New York University, said this: “If Joni Mitchell were East African and met Nina Simone for tea in San Francisco’s Mission District, she might end up sounding like Meklit Hadero.”
If you missed her stunning performance, go to www.meklithadero.com to hear a sample of her sound. Or, even better, enter your email address for a download of four free songs!
Felice Schulaner has embraced the hot-off-the-runway sequin trend with this unstructured jacket and midnight-black Coach Poppy Rocker satchel. Notice how she picked up some of the sparkle, just enough to complement the sequins, in the statement necklace, too.
I found another stylish RIAF performer in the courtyard: Meghan Merrill, a lead in the FABULOUS Fräulein Maria. This outfit is a dead giveaway that this girl is fun at party–spearmint dress, contrasted with textured belt, feather metal dangle earrings, chunky men’s watch and booties by Fergie that she just picked up for $27 at DSW–good eye.
I could invest some serious time chronicling the outfits that come out of Elisabeth Waters’ closet. She’s great to watch because she’s fashionably fearless. Here, Elisabeth went all amazing lace on us, from the Gia Ventola dress to the Louboutins to the cross-body bag to the fingerless gloves. And it works like crazy!
Let’s just start with what I love about what Stefanie Batten Bland is wearing in this photo. For one, she’s keyed into the sparkle trend I’ve mentioned, and she did so with a vintage skirt, found in Vienna, that she turned into a strapless dress with the assistance of an Asolo Rep seamstress. By the way, not only is she stylish and gorgeous (add quite nice, too) she’s talented as well. Stefanie is responsible for concept choreography, costumes and sound design, in addition to dancing, in Terra Firma with her eponymous dance company.
I like a woman who’s not afraid to pair two reds–as Victoria Leopold did with this Michael Kors striped dress and her ankle-wrap heels.
ON THE STREET
There’s something about Sarasota Architectural Salvage that brings out the cool and creative–like Charlotte Harber, abstract artist, model and actress at the Art of Salvage event. Love the layers–grey tank under a charcoal henley, then another set of layers of necklaces finished with the wide gold cuff and plaid fedora.
Stephanie Peters stays stylishly dry outside Pastry Art with her clear dome umbrella. She’s on trend with paired lavender and royal purple colors. Nice touch throwing in the neutral camel clutch.
Proof that well-teamed accessories can take an outfit from sweet to sultry: Sh’Terrian Bryant put an edge on these lace baby doll shorts and tank with her shoulder-duster earrings, floral hairpiece and stacked bangles.
Want to know how to do Boho Chic? Well, Jaszy McAllister makes it look effortless and unfussy, which is key. She pulled two shades of blue from the patterned dress by adding the multi-layer necklace. And, the relaxed textured bag and weathered Western short boots keeps it carefree for the S/aRt/Q Print Party.
For those who wonder how to make this a cocktail look–just switch out the bag to a clutch (even in another color, like yellow!) and the boots to a wedge heel or gladiator sandals. Voilà!
For some of us, we have to work to acquire our style. For others, it’s passed on…just as Jessica Pope Pinelli has done with oh-so-adorable baby Lively; both have added key accessories to summer cotton.