Friday, February 13, 2009

Playing Dress-Up

Thanks in part to a much-appreciated gift card, I had a lovely dinner at Gramercy Tavern last night. The seven-course winter tasting menu, which offered many delights, including a delicious bit of roast veal topped with a small rectangle of braised deckle, recognizable in less refined surroundings as the fatty part of the brisket.

My companion was one of the few men there wearing a suit and tie, and I had pulled a form-fitting, square-necked stretch-wool Dolce & Gabbana dress from my collection of classic black dinner dresses, which I wore with a favorite pair of black calfskin Manolo Blahnik pumps with four-inch heels, a cherry-red Chanel lipstick from their sadly now discontinued Infrarouge line and a Frank Gehry bangle.

Afterwards, we went to see L'Image, a jazzy quintet comprising some of the world's best studio musicians, at Iridium, and I think I may have been the only woman there in a dress.

Obviously, I love to dress up. It's my surest route to feeling glamorous and grownup, and my icons are the great stars of the 1950s. Though sometimes it all seems too much, especially in a dressed-down world, I generally think I pull it off. And I wonder why more people don't seem to try. Maybe they're not interested; maybe they don't know how.

Because when I've done it right, nothing beats the feeling of looking in the mirror and thinking, correctly or not, that I look like this:

(Elizabeth Taylor, c. 1957.)

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