Until I turned, let’s say, 15, I was falsely under the impression that if you bought an outfit — a coordinated, matching-even-if-it-wasn’t-matching, two (or more) piece outfit, you were never to wear either garment separately. Early on, this made sense. My dad never wore vests from his three-piece suits if he wasn’t combining said vest with the jacket and pants that came with it. Nor would my mom ever wear her ridiculous, brown corduroy pants from a suit she picked up at a store on Third Avenue if it wasn’t with the matching jacket. That she would wear such a suit to begin with begs another form of discrepancy.
But what a stupid idea that is. The whole fun of investing in (well, spending on) an outfit proper is that when all is said and worn, you can — and should be able to — disassemble the individual pieces and let them function as their own entities thus cultivating upward of three costumes as opposed to one. Ka-ching!
This is precisely why last week, just after Giorgio Armani’s now discussed-at-great-length One Night Only in New York, I took apart the satin peplum blouse and affiliated trousers that I wore (plus a denim jacket because inexplicably, I have an incredibly hard time feeling-more-than-looking overdressed) to demonstrate how the two pieces might look when finally divorced. They’re fantastic together, don’t get me wrong, but the way I see it, any set of twins would likely feel highly offended if you grouped them both as a single individual which is precisely why I’d never do that. I’d like to extend that same level of sympathy and respect to my clothing.
In outfit #1, I’m wearing the Armani suit of sorts with the aforementioned denim jacket.
In outfit #2, I’ve forsaken the peplum blouse in favor of an oversized, striped (and therefore casual if not wholly comfortable) sweater to create the illusion of a pajama party in the form of one outfit. My favorite caveat is that the pants are a really elegant form of thick silk and the sweater is cashmere, otherwise known as cash-murrrr. (Sweater by The Row, pants and sunglasses by Armani).
And finally, in outfit #3, I swap the pants for the peplum, add a pair of JNCO-style light wash Chloé jeans (purchased from Yoox at $180 a pop, people) and Manolo Blahnik pumps so that if for some reason the mayor of New York City comes over an aggressively loud megaphone and officially dubs Monday night the new Saturday night, I am ready.