All the glamorous details


“I die!” declares celebrity stylist Rachel Zoe after looking at a vintage Oscar De La Renta dress during Season 1 of The Rachel Zoe Project on Bravo. 

Zoe, author of Style A to Zoe: The Art of Fashion, Beauty, and Everything Glamour, dramatically gushes over everything glamorous. She writes, “In my book, glamour is pure lifestyle.” 

After reading her book, you’ll see that with a little extra effort and attention to details, a glamorous life can be yours. 

If you can get past the self-indulgent, over-dramatic tone of the book, you’ll find that Zoe has risen to the top of the fashion world because of her meticulous attention to detail. Her book isn’t simply an explanation of what to wear when; it is about creating your most glamorous life through the clothing you wear, the items you surround yourself with, and the atmosphere you create for spending time with family and friends. 

“The aim is to love everything you own,” Zoe explains. 

The first few chapters of the book are filled with advice from Zoe about how to be your own stylist. Know what you like about yourself, and play up those elements when you dress. Borrow ideas from celebrities and the people around you. Look at any picture of Zoe and you’ll see her love for accessories, including bags from her line with designer Judith Leiber. 

She explains, “Accessories are everything. To me, they’re more important than the clothes.” She often begins with a simple pair of black pants or a cream colored, blouse and adds the shoes, the bag, and, of course, the jewelry to make the look her own. 

She includes plenty of lists that will help you build your own collection of beautiful accessories such as: Jewelry box basics, 4 Essential shoes, and 4 essential Handbags. 

Use accessories for decorating your house just as you use them when you dress. Zoe explains, “I always strive for one element of dramatic flair, something that is special about the overall look that we can also build on. I call it the wow factor.” 

A neutral wall color with vibrant pops of color and texture produce a wow in the same way that a gold, jeweled snake bracelet wrapped around a wrist takes jeans and a black t-shirt to new glamorous territory. 

A glamorous life isn’t simply about looking good and having a beautiful home; it’s about living it up. Parties and vacations are special events that require special attention. While most of us will never be nominated for an Oscar or a Grammy, Zoe explains that it’s important to prepare for life’s red carpet moments, like a birthday or New Year’s party. 

A little preparation will save your sanity and your pocket book. It ensures comfort, too, so that you can spend the night enjoying yourself, rather than worrying about what you’re wearing. She offers advice about how to dress for nearly every event. 

After you’ve chosen the perfect outfit, Zoe offers great tips for entertaining guests. She includes details that many party throwers might overlook, from invitations to a detailed list of how to stock a home bar. 

“It doesn’t matter what’s going on in your life. If you at least make an effort to look your best, and if you keep your surroundings looking good, you will feel a lot better than you would otherwise,” explains Donatella Versace in an interview with Zoe. 

Snap photos of your outfits and your home to see what works and what doesn’t. Whether you add a big cocktail ring or a bunch of freshly cut flowers to finish the look, remember that glamor is in the details, and Zoe covers the details from A to Zoe.

Monday, July 6, 2009