Preppy Fashion is Back | The Chic List

There’s nothing like a downtown stroll in the crisp California winter air to clear one’s head and test out a new outfit. In my flair boyfriend jeans and Pepperdine University collegiate crewneck with a cream turtleneck peeking out from under, I walked down Downtown Turlock, the charming corner of where I grew up. A sign on the sidewalk read, “a blind date with the book, just down the street” enticed me to take a little detour.

I nursed the honey oat milk cappuccino in my hand that I grabbed from the nearby coffee shop, La Mo, like precious cargo. Taking a sip, I peered through the window of “Lightly Used Books,” convincing myself not to go in because of the bags and bags of page-turners I’ve previously bought, faster than I’ve been able to read them. So, I just stared through my cat-eye tortoise shell sunglasses, feeling like a preppy version of Holly Golightly at Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Rather than fine jewelry, I was gaping at literary treasures. And instead of an iconic black dress, black opera gloves, and a tiara on my head, I was in the all-American uniform that never goes out of style, but is currently making comeback: preppy sportswear.  

In the forties, Paris may have been the fashion capitol of the world, but America was the beginning of sportswear. Comfort and chic became synonymous because it was democracy in the form of getting dressed. America, after all is a democratic (lower-case ‘d’) nation. Freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom of dawning your personal style. Never has that been more true today, even as COVID-19 has been a rollercoaster for our lifestyle habits, and in turn, our wardrobe selections.

The pandemic has birthed to dress-isms: a discovery that comfort is key, due to work from home and do-everything-at-home’s demand for loungewear. Then there’s the camp that have missed getting all-dolled up so fervently, that they’re ready dress-to-the-nines, the tens, and the elevens. Well, the pandemic is not over yet, but fashionistas aren’t retreating to full-time yoga pants and matching sweat sets. Rather, they’re dawning preppy sportswear that’s somewhere between Ivy League and Princess Diana street style.

Besides my ensemble a la my alma mater’s merch previously mentioned, here is another take on the reemerging trend that is part ‘60s mod, part Cher from clueless (by the way, has anyone seen. Alicia Silverstone in the Babysitter’s Club Reboot? Such a feel-good show!), and a Blair Waldorf circa Constance fashion throwback! The mastery of this look is all about balancing textures and volume. The oversized camel-colored sweater is the star of this style show, (one of the most on-trend fashion staples in the prepster genre right now), but its supporting actors aren’t shining any less. I opted for a geometrical blue, orange, and white skirt under that picks up on the autumnal hue of the sweater but also meshed with the baby blue button down top. The voluminous sleeves would be overpowering, if not for the stasis the mini-skirt creates in the outfit. Since I’m showing some leg here and it’s cold, skin-colored nylons and knee-high white go-go boots were the way to go. The white calls back to the shapes in the skirt and brings it all together.

Photos taken by the McHenry Museum back in November

Keeping it Krischic,

Kristin Vartan

Also Check Me Out On: 23ABC, ABC7 LA, Entertainment WeeklyThe Hollywood ReporterE! NewsDarling MagazinePepperdine GraphicTwitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

2021’s Best On-Camera Style Moments

I’ve always sought to carve my own path. When it comes to on-camera style, that path leads from the runway to the anchor desk, and most days out in the field.

You may ask, ‘Kristin, why go through the trouble when you already wear so many hats as an on-camera reporter who also fills in as an anchor on the desk, a weather anchor and sometimes both at the same time? Well, it’s simple: fashion to my confidence on-camera is like coffee to my energy with my ever-changing shifts.

There’s a whole wardrobe’s worth of outfits I loved wearing, here are some of my absolute favorites. Plus, the memories I created in them added an extra layer to the sentiment toward them.

The Lady in Red (and Green) on the Anchor Desk:

The last weekend of August marked my first time anchoring the news. Yes, that’s right. I was freshly 25 and thriving! Suffice to say, I had to anchor the desk in style, in my power colors nonetheless. That line from the Nanny theme song, “she’s the lady in red while everybody else is wearing tan” has been my mantra for on-camera dressing. To me it’s interchangeable with sporting green. On the left, you’ll find me all smiles in an exquisite Cinq a Sept minidress with a side-swept bow on the neckline, and similar cinch on the waist. To the right, an olive Karen Millen number with an accordian skirt and double buckles.

An Oscar-Worthy Dress to the Academy Awards Virtual Red Carpet:

“I’d like to thank the Academy,” for giving me an excuse to wear this tuxedo-inspired dress! Ever since I entered professional life, I’ve started to favor sleeker cuts with vintage trimmings rather than clothing that’s too fussy and frilly. Every so often, perhaps I’ll add on the extra icing and decals, with a vintage-twist. This big bow was just the right touch while covering the 2021 Oscars! The red carpet may have been virtual for me, but I still went all-out, with an Old Hollywood flair.

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American Victoriana for Interviewing the Cast of ‘Dickinson’

The third is final season of @dickinson came out this past November, and I got all dressed up for it . I wanted to channel American Victoriana, since the show takes place in the 19th century. It all started with this scarf print top from Ralph Lauren, tied with a bow. I picked up on the red by opting for that same wool skirt I wore at the Spider-Man premiere. It’s a combo I’m sure Emily Dickinson herself (or at least the more fashion-forward version that costume designers Jennifer Moeller and John Dunn dreamed up) would approve of! It was lovely speaking with @haileesteinfeld@ellahunt@keepingitkrischicdrian.blake.enscoe@annabaryshnikov, and Alena Smith again, while also getting to meet @amandawarrenofficial and Chinaza Uche. You can check out full interviews here.

Scarlet Suit at the Spider-Man No Way Home Premiere

With [a] great power [suit], comes great responsibility! Covering the World Premiere of Spider-Man No Way Home, tonight for 23ABC! This cherry red wool number complete with gold buttons was my mom’s suit in the ‘90s. Every time I wear something of hers, it seems to bring me good luck. It’s a mixture of that and God just being good

A Cinderella Moment at the Mayor’s Ball

When you cover the Mayor‘s Ball for the news, but have to leave early because your carriage is about to turn into a pumpkin. Just kidding! It was because I had to edit and put together my story about the ball. All jokes aside, I love any excuse to get dressed up, and this emerald number with Victorian motifs is a showstopper. Paired with these naked heels that resemble glass slippers, further accentuate the fairytale theme.

Honorable Mentions:

Which outfit is your favorite?

Keeping it Krischic,

Kristin Vartan

Also Check Me Out On: 23ABC, ABC7 LA, Entertainment WeeklyThe Hollywood ReporterE! NewsDarling MagazinePepperdine GraphicTwitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

Keeping it Christmas Casual

This Christmas, I’m keeping it casual! But that doesn’t mean I’m not going to keep it ‘Krischic!’

Last yuletide holiday, I was working. This year, I’m home in NorCal and on vacation! So, I’m trading in my reporter mic for a cup of my brother’s homemade Parisian hot chocolate, the steam warming my face while curling up on the couch and watching movies like Home Alone 2, A Castle for Christmas and It’s a Wonderful Life. As I settle into the red wool blanket the comforts of home settle over me.

I wouldn’t consider myself a homebody in the slightest, but when out of office (which the location, let’s be honest is contingent on what I’m reporting on) and home for the holidays, laid-back yet luxurious attire is the way to go. If you find yourself having a low-key Christmas but like me, still itching to look haute (fashionably elegant), here’s an outfit idea for you:

Disclaimer: this is not what I’m wearing on Christmas Eve or Christmas itself (don’t worry you’ll get an #OOTD later), but it was a contender that I’ve worn on repeat since the weather dropped below seventy degrees in Kern County. I opted for some athleisure pants that are great for lounging or running to grab last-minute groceries for Christmas dinner. Then, I selected a turtleneck that picks up on a hue in the side-stripe detailing on the trousers. Red is of course the color of Christmas, and it’s also one of my favorites to wear year-round.

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The top and bottom are as unfussy as sweats but look polished when draping a blazer on top. What’s great about this over-sized wool number from the ‘80s: it’s put together without looking corporate. It’s also ridiculously comfortable and has character. It’s a coat that tells a story—perhaps Alice in Wonderland, with the stopwatches embroidered into it, or even a head nod to the time traveling daydreams of the forward thinker with a vintage soul who wears it.

To accentuate the ‘timeless’ (yes I went there) adornment on this outerwear, I layered this gold-chain vintage Chanel necklace on top. The gold in the embroidery echoes the gilded jewelry and even the gold clasp with a lion’s head on this mid-century evoking bag. Editor’s note: only reach for the bag and trade your fuzzy socks for these white sneakers if you’re heading out the door.

Keeping it Krischic,

Kristin Vartan

Also Check Me Out On: 23ABC, ABC7 LA, Entertainment WeeklyThe Hollywood ReporterE! NewsDarling MagazinePepperdine GraphicTwitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

If Carrie Bradshaw lived in Bakersfield, here is what she would do

As I walked down the ‘Streets of Bakersfield,’ I couldn’t help but wonder…could I actualize an ‘Empire State of Mind’ in the ‘Golden Empire?’ And just like that…I realized I could. Perhaps it was the ensemble I dawned inspired by Carrie Bradshaw herself (a fellow journalist and fashion aficionado). The Carrie-confidence, in every curl. It was even in the blue toile dress and matching baby blue cashmere sweater cinched with a cream belt. The detail that truly took this look to the next level: my mother’s suede camel-colored jacket trimmed with a faux fur collar. With the voluminous hairstyle, layered on top, I was embodying the columnists’ lionsmane to a “T.” Without further ado, here’s how to take on Bakersfield, Carrie Bradshaw Style. 

Brunch at the 24th Street Cafe or New Vintage Grill: 

Throughout the six seasons of Sex and the City, the fab four frequently brunched before ladies who lunch, and blogger brunches became a thing. Cafeteria would be the backdrop for them talking about their dating woes, bottomless mimosas and egg and pancake breakfasts included. The 24th Street Cafe is that busy, buzzing and casually classic place that captures the spirit of Sex and the City outings. Pre-Instagram, people didn’t go somewhere because it would look good on their feeds (really even that has become passé according to the Gen-Z community). They went for the ambiance that culminated thecertain vibe of the crowd, delicious food, and good service. It was about making somewhere your place. 24th Street Cafe has more of a charming diner style, nestled inside a building coated in greenery on the trellis, and its outdoor patio is inviting. The meal portions are big, hearty and do not compromise on taste. Meanwhile, New Vintage Grill on Truxtun has a few different versions of a benedict, and you can enjoy any one of them, or really any item on their extensive menu, on an open-air patio with outdoor seating reminiscent of Cafeteria.

Grab a Cosmopolitan at the Padre Hotel Bar

Who needs the Plaza in New York when there’s the Padre? Who am I kidding, I’ve done tea at the plaza Eloise style, and it’s magical. That being said, the Padre is a gem in town. A sign in all caps, red neon lights, the Padre captures your attention. Fun fact: First Lady Dr. Jill Biden even stayed there after her visit with UFW Farm Workers at Delano’s Forty Acres on Cesar Chavez day. The Padre popped up in Downtown Bakersfield in the jazz age and continues to make a splash with its French crown molding offset by black and white tiles and modern chandeliers. What truly catches your attention: a wall mural of a cowgirl clad in a red, blue and floral two-piece western suit, dripping in sparkly fringe. She tips her hat to visitors far and wide, including fans of Sex and the City, of course! There are five different eateries inside from uber casual to incredibly fancy. I suggest heading to the rooftop for city views while enjoying Carrie Bradshaw’s favorite cocktail: a Cosmopolitan. 

Traipse Bakersfield Museum of Art (where a Charlotte type would work)

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I could wax poetically about my fantasies of attending the cocktail soirees Charlotte hosted as an art dealer at the gallery she worked for. The Bakersfield Museum of Art frequently hosts “Museum After Dark” events that run the gamut. Those evening escapades are not always as buttoned-up as the ones Charlotte frequents, but they usually spotlight communities of diverse backgrounds, which is absolutely delightful. I once went to this Dios Los Muertos garden party in the museum’s courtyard, where local Mexican-American artisans showed us, their original artwork.. Another night at the museum was in honor of Pride Month, with live music by LGBTQ+ artists, appearances by local drag queens, and artwork by the queer community included. Of course, even just exploring the museum is a treat, because there you will find white and mint walls adorned with modern art. There are pieces that also have some tie to Kern County, previously a whole retrospective on the Bakersfield Sound, including Buck Owens’ concert wardrobe. 

Shop Sustainably at In your Wildest Dreams Consignment 

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Granted we don’t have a Neiman Marcus or Saks Fifth Avenue to seek out the latest Manolo Blahnik shoe, but we do have the next best thing: In Your Wildest Dreams. Also if we’re being realistic here, there’s no way that Carrie could have afforded all those designer shoes on her columnist salary. Buying them previously loved is not only more budget friendly but sustainable, and that’s something we’re all about in the 2020’s.

Keeping it Krischic,

Kristin Vartan

Also Check Me Out On: 23ABC, ABC7 LA, Entertainment WeeklyThe Hollywood ReporterE! NewsDarling MagazinePepperdine GraphicTwitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

THE ’90S SUIT WITH A TWIST | ON-CAMERA STYLE

It was the best of times, it was the simplest of times: The ‘90s. The finale to the 20th century was also the era I was born. The prologue to the new millennia was full of minimalist fashion. But it wasn’t this concept of doing “without” something. The neutral pinstripe suits with high-waist trousers, that could be seen on men on wall street and off-duty street style for starlets like Julia Roberts and Cindy Crawford were a testament that when your work with what you have, you have a treasure trove of natural beauty and grace to look effortlessly chic.

I see it in the echoes of the pinstripe blazer that my mom used to rock in the ‘90s draped over my shoulder. I am reminded of it as I step into the Illiad Bookshop in North Hollywood. While driving down Cahuenga Blvd, you cannot miss the building coated in giant rectangular columns painted to look like leather-bound tomes nestled side by side. Bookending the paper pillars are colorful illustrations of some of the most illustrious of literature that seemed to spill from their pages: Jane Austen, Shakespeare.

Alice tails the rabbit keeping time and Peter Pan plays his flute for Wendy. Inside these fascinating walls, real books whisper to me. The temptation to take a whole library home is almost impossible to ignore, but my interest settles on two books: a biography of one of my favorite artists of all time, Sting and another: an art book of the legendary Celine Dion. Looking through parchment preserving her mementos and iconic style and music pages and glossy pictures cataloguing her career, my love for the ‘90s is cemented. These were the best of times, the simplest of times. Music hits were heart-wrenching or inspiring ballads, TV sitcoms like Family Matters, Friends, Girlfriends and Full House were the epitome of feel-good. From slip dresses to  style was so unfussy that it gave birth to the idea of the “it girl,” the predecessor to the influencer.  

Here’s how you can pull off the nineties trend yourself. 

A Blazer You Can Bet On:

The one item I cannot live without is a blazer. You can take them from day to night and from the office to the coffee shop. This onyx one with green stripes is a chameleon of sorts, but its foremothers will tell you it’s not to be overlooked. Lisa Kudrow turned paparazzi heads toward her head-to-toe pinstripe suit during a night out with Michael Stern. Meanwhile, we cannot forget that pinstripe skirt suit moment, completed with nylons the color of night that Julia Roberts dawned at the Golden Globes.

The sharp lapels and shoulder pads of the blazer I sported to get my professional headshots done as an on-camera personality, created edgy structure. When paired with the right trousers, it is what I see as the “cool girl’s” office look, or the red-carpet reporting outfit that calls back to the ‘90s starlets aforementioned. During the summer I trade in trousers for white Bermuda shorts and it seamlessly goes from “I mean business” to off-duty ‘90s trendsetter.

Trousers That Stop Traffic:

Trousers are on-trend this fall, especially those in a wide leg cut. WE can thank a year and a half of #WFH for making us want to wear something less constricting. Whether color blocking or monochromatic, a blazer and structured wide-leg pants is both comfortable and polished. Seriously, they are as good as loungewear as I’m concerned.

A Pop of Color:

Since the black blazer is striped with an olive green, I opted for an asymmetrical crop top in the same hue. The top lacking symmetry is the 2021 version of the ‘90s halter top, and wearing it under a suit can look slightly off in the best way. This season, green has been my most repeated color to wear, because it brings out the luminance of my olive skin tone. But in general, I have noticed that green has been the “it” color of the season, making its appearance like an overgrowth of trees.

A Sleek Belt: It doesn’t get more pre-millennium than a square belt! The silver buckle ties everything together once I add my silver rhinestone earrings.

Which ‘90s fashion trend is your favorite?

Keeping it Krischic,

Kristin Vartan

Also Check Me Out On: 23ABC, ABC7 LA, Entertainment WeeklyThe Hollywood ReporterE! NewsDarling MagazinePepperdine GraphicTwitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

HOUSE OF GUCCI: THE ‘HAUTE’ TIPS I TOOK FROM THE FILM FASHION

The Golden Age of Gucci: The interlocked “G’s” have been the through line of my entire November, from the Gucci Love Parade fashion show I attended with my friend, Mari at the month’s genesis, to the House of Gucci costume exhibition at FIDM, the Gucci Gardenia pop-up at the Grove and the grand finale: seeing House of Gucci on the big screen (view my past Gucci experiences here and here).

Sure, House of Gucci is drawing both admiration and some criticism right now, but whichever camp you fall into, this is undeniable: the film and the festivities around the luxury brand this past month have put new pep into our monogrammed loafer steps. I’ve had lengthy conversations about The House of Gucci’s fashionable force over the public with coworkers, family, friends and even strangers. I’ll never forget what this one woman at the Gucci Gardenia Pop-up (which practically looked like a pink gingerbread house outside of the colossal Christmas tree at the Grove) said to me: “I haven’t seen Los Angeles visitors and natives get this excited about experimenting with their personal style since the pandemic began. People have been coming here dressed to the nines in looks inspired by the movie, and it’s inspiring me too!” It’s a phenomena I’ve also felt in my veins, and translated to my vestments: I practically cat walked across the FIDM museum galleries filled with looks from the film, the walls encapsulated in rouge.

The creative choice evoked a photographer’s red room, and along the walls above the mannequins in their Gucci finery, were stills of Lady Gaga, Adam Driver, and Jared Leto from the movie. The red walls picked up on my rouge Gucci belt, calling like to like. The accessory on my person was the centerpiece to a wildwood of forest-green fabric. This cutout sweater and tailored trouser combination screamed professional with edge, while remaining nonchalantly comfortable for walking around all of LA for all things Gucci, including the exhibition (which you can catch until December 4). Seeing these looks translate on screen, with all the other production elements in place, this was clear:

Ridley Scott may have penned the “House of Gucci” script inspired by real events that are so over-the-top you cannot make it up (granted, they did take some creative license with it, and I highly recommend supplementing the movie with news articles about the real-life Gucci family), but costume designer Janty Yates embroidered the plotline into the character’s wardrobe. After all, the woman is fluent in various genres of film: from the historically iconic The Gladiator (which she won an Oscar for), to the futuristic fixings of the The Martian. House of Gucci, set in the ‘80s and ‘90s was close enough to our timeline for style notes to be applicable rather than farfetched, but unique enough to add a refresh to any person’s closet.

(Be advised: slight spoilers ahead).

The Literal Meaning of a ‘Power Suit’

From a white snakeskin skirt suit with an asymmetrical torso, to a blue and white tweed number adorned with pearl buttons, Lady Gaga transformed into her own rendition of Patrizia Reggiani in style. At five-foot-two, she stood taller in these luxurious uniforms of an Italian socialite, shoulder pads and all. Reggiani’s power (and her hunger for it) seemed to reach a fever pitch once she transformed from the daughter of an Italian entrepreneur and his mistress, clad in plain brown skirt suits, to one trimmed in tweed and 24carat gold jewelry. But that power [dressing], needs to come with responsibility and compassion, the most crucial accessories to the outfit that you shouldn’t leave home without.

Logomania can either divide or unify

Brand identity starts with two things: building a culture around the house and iconizing its symbol. In Gucci’s case, it’s the fraternal twinned G’s. As more Gucci family members come into the fold of the family business and begin to dawn the double-G logo across vests, scarves and belts further and further throughout the House of Gucci, it divides rather than brings them together, quite in contrast with the interlocked “G’s” inseparable nature across the items they wear. But here’s the thing about a logo: branding is two sides of the same coin, and its effect on people is all in your hands. Flip the coin, flip the script: If you wear a label for the sake of art and admiration, it communicates taste, style, and the choice to take part in the culture that a brand has cultivated over decades with love and care. When you dawn a logo or any designer piece as a power symbol to intimidate others, you’re letting it wear and control your humanity, which was much to the downfall of the characters in the film.

Everything was bigger and better in the ‘80s and ‘90s

This one I have been wearing as a picket sign in the form of outfits throughout my adult life (thank you mom for passing down your collection from the ‘80s and ‘90s to me), but the last twenty years of the twentieth century, were fashion at its most vivacious and effervescent. It’s the type of “dopamine dressing” (a term coined by fashion psychologist and friend, Dawnn Karen) that we need as this pandemic continues.

The new note I took from the film: Italian fashion in the ’80s was on a new level of maximalist and mesmerizing. Two looks that popped like crazy on screen weren’t even the stereotypical neon numbers one would recall from that time period. It was the “The Black Widow” (Reggiani) coated in white. No, not the wedding dress in the smack center of the exhibition. The halter-top floor length gown in ivory and patterned in pearls she dawned during a glitzy nightcap was one. The second: a summer dress in lace with an attached cape to match, cinched with a chunky black belt and gold buckle. A sign of the times, the accessory was paired with a structured black handbag to match. The motifs on both dresses reminded me of my mother’s engagement dress in a white floral lace, cap sleeves bookended with pearls. I can’t wait to shop my mom’s closet some more in an effort to put a Milanese spin on the retro raiment I’ve already been slipping into.

Personal style is the new body language

The power of clothing like any other force, can be wielded for good or evil, as aforementioned. Let’s put the back-stabbing and lethal decisions by the characters of this film aside: In neutral terms, when you’re wearing something self-actualizing, you stand in those clothes a certain way. Your posture unconsciously self-corrects, your diaphragm has more space to support your breath, and your words come out with amplified conviction. Choose your clothes and how your wear them wisely (that includes the life decisions you make in them), and you can reach your full potential the right way.

Which outfit was your favorite?

Keeping it Krischic,

Kristin Vartan

Also Check Me Out On: 23ABC, ABC7 LA, Entertainment WeeklyThe Hollywood ReporterE! NewsDarling MagazinePepperdine GraphicTwitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

Channeling House of Gucci Style | The Chic List

I’m going “Gaga,” over cheetah and leopard print. There, I said it. If the runways didn’t confirm it for the glitterati of this world (Michael Kors and Lanvin to name a couple), then singer and actress extraordinaire, Lady Gaga has the past few weeks of the House of Gucci press tour: Animal print, specifically leopard and cheetah, are all the rage these days. Mama Monster looked like the queen of the concrete jungle in a metallic cheetah print Lanvin trench coat. And she was the Maven in Milan in a turtleneck mid-length dress showing that when you’re a megastar, it’s not about earning your stripes, but sporting your spots.

Lady Gaga has already gotten Oscar buzz around her latest role as Patricia Reggiani, Italian socialite and ex-wife to the emperor of the Gucci empire, Maurizio Gucci (played by Adam Driver). Seeing snippets of the film, it’s easy to be lured by the vintage wedding videos, the heavenly fashion, and the incredible way Gaga and Jared Leto have been able to transform into these figures. Coming up later this week, I will have blog post about the film and some other Gucci-related festivities (between the Gucci Love Parade I attended, and what’s to come this week, November has truly been the Golden Age of Gucci here on Keeping it Krischic. No, this is not sponsored. I’m just an ardent aficionado).  For now, here are some snapshots of how I personally have been channeling the Leopard and Cheetah print trends in my own wardrobe.

From street style to the on-screen style (for me, that means on-camera as a TV News reporter and fill-in anchor and weather anchor), I have the been wearing ‘wild’ trend on repeat.

Street Style:

This Ganni wrap dress is an ensemble designed for the main character. From the balloon sleeves, to the shiny leopard fabric that shimmers in the sunlight, it’s not for the faint of heart. It’s the dress you wear when you realize it’s a jungle out there, and you will conquer it while being well-dressed. I was operating by the Italian fashion mantra that more is more here: the vintage Chanel chain necklace and polka slingback heels make me feel like I’m about to traipse through the Townhouse Galleria in Milan in between sips of espresso and fashion shows.

On-Screen Style

Leopard print is already a little loud, so I thought I might as well go all out. I decided to sport this accordion midi-skirt in the feline fabric, with a punchy blazer. Pairing this double-breasted green one from Vince Camuto with a red turtleneck from Zara is the perfect combination. The rich color scheme is complimentary, and with that interlocked “G” belt to match, it’s definitely House of Gucci-approved. This fuchsia one is also a favorite. I belted it since it’s a little oversized, and didn’t wan to swim in fabric. By adding some suede over-the-knee boots under the skirt, this look screams luxury! Plus these vibrant hues pop on-camera during my live hits.

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Which look is your favorite?

Keeping it Krischic,]

Kristin Vartan

Also Check Me Out On: 23ABC, ABC7 LA, Entertainment WeeklyThe Hollywood ReporterE! NewsDarling MagazinePepperdine GraphicTwitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

Gucci Goes Hollywood: A Look Inside the “Gucci Love Parade”

Hollywood Boulevard, a sidewalk with stars that line a street of dreams. These are the aspirations, realized, cemented into the ground iconizing actors and musicians who have “made it.”

The Walk of Fame also represents the hopes of aspiring creatives and legends in the making. As Creative Director of Gucci, Alessandro Michele points out in his show notes, “Hollywood is nine letters dripping with desire.” Gucci’s Love Parade,” Tuesday along that infamous pink-and-black star walk, was like drinking in that fantasy after a parched season. In Southern California, style aficionados like myself were thirsting for high fashion. Meanwhile, a design dignitary like Michele hankering for Hollywood.

Lights, Camera, Fashion:

Michele’s mother worked as production assistant when he was younger and had dreams of his own. Regal Reveries of Rita Hayworth and Marilyn Monroe, he explained in his show notes, expanded his world beyond his “squat in the outskirts of Rome.” While I am unsure if the hopes in his boyhood were to eventually be the new guard at Gucci, which has been around almost as long as Hollywood, he himself has become a famous figure in his own right. He is standing in the monogrammed loafer shoes that Guccio Gucci did exactly 100 years ago when he birthed the fashion house as a luxury travel brand. No doubt, canvas luggage not too far removed from the original Gucci designs were what Michele packed his belongings in to head to the City of Angels this past week. For Gucci’s centennial celebration, Michele wrote a love Letter to Hollywood. Instead of ink, he dictated it through needle and thread. In place of parchment, he employed fabrics lined with fur and sequins. Envelopes sealed in interlocked ‘G’s for Gucci, and hand delivered.

The aforementioned love letter was sonnet to the onscreen icons of 20th century: Models glided down the walk of fame looking like cinematic sirens—from ‘70s tweed suits topped with cowboy hats echoing the industry’s iconic westerns to a champagne dress accompanied by a feather boa reminiscent of film noir, but then accessorized with a punk-rock version of a Cleopatra headpiece, black latex opera gloves, and oversized shades. The runway was like a film strip in real time, each look adding to the eclectic plot of the show. Needless to say, Michele brought with him a whole entourage for a procession, to make sure Hollywood was aware that she was indeed his beloved and held a special place in his and mother’s hearts.

A Deleted Scene:

And it was to be a grand gesture to proclaim this admiration. Gucci shut down the entire Hollywood boulevard that evening, marking its presence with the El Capitan marquis spelling out “Gucci Love Parade.” The endless constellational curb normally dotted with the footprints of tourists and celebrity impersonators, now lined with the larger-than-life beings that flood our Instagram feed. In addition to three rows of glitterati made up of A-listers (Miley, Cyrus, Dakota Johnson, Billie Eilish, and Gwyneth Paltrow to name a few), Influencers (Chriselle Lim, Aimee Song, and Bryan Boy), and fashion journalists alike, the show welcomed spectators who made the pilgrimage specifically for this show, or simply stumbled upon it in wonder.

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And I can tell you that the democratization of this stylish spectacle was intentional, from the runway’s open-air concept (normally the Oscars red carpet and film premieres at El Capitan I’ve attended are closed off to the public by a tent) to the series of “trailers” for the upcoming featurette on social media. Sure, the who’s who got to sit in the Gucci canvas director’s chairs embroiderd with names of Greek Myth, but Michele did not turn away his fellow dreamers, who would no doubt be inspired by the over a hundred thoughtfully designed garments in the way that the golden age of Hollywood inspired him.

And perhaps those behind the velvet rope had a special advantage. Earning prime real estate at the show meant getting there a couple hours before it started. In that time, models were in their off-duty attire. For some, that meant a white robe with heels. For others, a velvet burnt orange suit with bell bottom trousers and Gucci loafers. They strutted down the runway receiving direction from men in black masks and headsets, waving their hands incessantly if models were falling behind or walking too quickly. Even the Jared Leto, who doesn’t seem to age, wasn’t above this instruction. Between their stage direction, he kindly smiled in acknowledgement of the crowd forming and cheering for him. And guess what? Leto, who will be starring in House of Gucci just weeks from now, was not the only celebrity cameo in the love parade. St. Vincent (whose “Los Ageless” now seems to have been a foreshadowing), Phoebe Bridgers, Macaulay Culkin (clad in garb straight out of Once Upon Time in Hollywood) were some those cast in starring roles. It was hard not fangirl a little as they stepped down the runway to the beat of Bjork’s “All is Full of Love” and “Big Time Sensuality.”

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Some Notes From Wardrobe Department:

Attending this show was my own fantasy realized. It took me and my mother hours, and various wardrobe combinations to find the right outfit that whimsically whispered “Gucci.” We looked retro and recent Gucci campaigns and decided to fashion something mismatched that still made sense. The foundation for this look was a cheetah print dress in pistachio green, complete with shoulder pads and a cutout on the torso. As if the dress wasn’t wild enough, I paired it with some wine-colored tights and tinselly shoes as an on-the-nose reference (or should I say on the toes) reference to the “silver screen.” I filled in the plot holes between the mix-and-matched lines of this look with some tassel earrings that picked up on the burgundy legwear and the rhinestones, the green frock. What truly tied it all together: my vintage paisley Oscar De La Renta silk scarf which I donned as a headband. To really go the extra Gucci mile, top-framed ‘60s glasses and a fur-lined plaid Staud jacket picking up on the ‘70s suits in the show (coincidentally) were a must.

What was your favorite look from the show?  

Keeping it Krischic,

Kristin Vartan

Also Check Me Out On: 23ABC, ABC7 LA, Entertainment WeeklyThe Hollywood ReporterE! NewsDarling MagazinePepperdine GraphicTwitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

Last Minute Halloween costume idea for the vintage girl at heart

The fact that it’s Halloween tomorrow is ‘S’wonderful, S’marvelous!’

That is, unless you’re still scratching your head and scouring every costume store in your city that is overcrowded with fellow procrastinators for props and garments that will transform you into another person for the night. In my case, that other person is someone that I have long admired and who made me fall in amour with all things Paris: Jo Stockton from Funny Face. And of course, the fashion-forward, bookish girl who wows all of the France fashion elite, with her unique or ‘funny’ features is played by Audrey Hepburn herself. 

This costume came together in a chorus of shopping trips in my and my mother’s closets. If you’re a vintage fashion lover like myself, dressing as any of leading ladies Audrey plays should be second nature. You most likely have a red dress of some sort buried in the back of your closet. Even if you don’t, your mom or cool aunt does. Even a thrift store nearby might. In my case, I did rent this dress, which was extremely cost effective and expanded my options. This crimson mid-length number has the same straight across neckline as Jo’s in the film.

While it’s the star of the show, the right accessories are what take the look to the next level. While cascading down the stairs of the old Bakersfield California building in my pointed red pumps and opera gloves, I felt like Jo flying her shawl before the Winged Victory of Samothrace in the Louvre. The footwear is straight from my own shoe collection. I admit, the gloves are new, but only because I misplaced identical ones I already had from a previous Halloween when I was Holly Gollightly from Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Pro-tip: keep all your costume pieces in a special bodx or chest so you don’t have to repurchase them! Also, skip Party City. You can find similar ones at a thrift store. They normally sell costumes this time of year. 

Then there’s the crown jewels of Jo’s ensemble: the jewelry. These are both courtesy of my mother’s to-die-for antique accessory collection she keeps in a special box. She was kind enough to let me borrow this necklace with layers of rhinestones, chains and geometric gems that cinch the strands like a brooch. The clip-on earrings with a cluster of pearls and rhinestones may not originally be a set with the neckwear, but it certainly marries well.

Who are you planning to be for Halloween this year?

Keeping it Krischic,

Kristin Vartan

Also Check Me Out On: 23ABC, ABC7 LA, Entertainment WeeklyThe Hollywood ReporterE! NewsDarling MagazinePepperdine GraphicTwitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

San Diego: Where to Eat and Stay | The Chic List

As wanderers, we have two things we yearn for: a sense of adventure that comes with the winds of change while drive with the windows down toward a destination. The second thing is a sense of home when we’re away from where we dwell.

Well, there are two things for me, in particular that can be both comforting and exciting when I go on a trip: where I stay and what I eat! My family can attest to the digital quest I go on to find the aesthetically and palette-pleasing restaurants in the city we’re visiting.

Where We Ate: Born and Raised

I had seen rave reviews from bloggers online about Born and Raised. This upscale steakhouse nestled in San Diego’s Little Italy is a draw for anyone with a hankering for food that is basically visual and performance art. We started with a Caesar Salad, and the server made it and plated it with such finesse. As he was fashioning the Caesar dressing from scratch, the smell of lemon, capers and spices traveled from the wooden bowl into our nostrils. It tasted just as delicious! In between bites of salad, I smothered the warm brioche in salted butter and washed it down with a glass of red zinfandel wine, rich in notes of blackberry and black pepper. Then our dinner came. My brother, parents and I all tend to order pretty much the same exact thing: an eight-ounce filet mignon. The one at Born and Raised was so tender it practically melted in my mouth. We also ordered a plate of legumes, crisp to perfection on the outside, and cloud-like on the inside. With every mirthful mouthful of food, we took in the grandeur of the art deco style space. Wooden columns shaped like trumpets flanked a fringy, crystal chandelier reminiscent of a flapper dress. The shimmering light bounced off the green marble tables and butterscotch leather chairs we sat on. It reminded us of San Diego’s version of London’s Sketch restaurant, which the four of us dined at when my parents and brother visited me in my old British abode years ago. My family’s love language is quality time and food, especially if it’s in a place like this that helps us time travel.

We decided to cap the night by sharing meringue and carrot cakes on the rooftop, which boasted its own beauty. You know that the interior designer of the restaurant did their job when the main draw of a rooftop bar is not the skyline of the city. A concrete jungle beyond softens with bubblegum and cotton-colored floral arrangements throughout the exterior. The floral lace pattern on my black bustier dress echoes the flower arrangements around me, unintentionally I assure you. After finishing up the gigantic cake slices while sitting in faux fur white leopard chairs, I decide to explore the space more. Each step I took in my my criss-cross gold chain heels, I find myself in a new corner with another fascinating detail. I delight in how my Burberry clutch matches the Scottish Tartan booths overlooking the cityscape. I revel in how the bar top’s golden finish is is a repercussion of my golden earrings with a pearl center and vintage Chanel chain necklace to match.

Where We Stayed: The U.S. Grant Hotel

After being fed, stomach and soul, my family saunters back to the U.S. Grant Hotel. The hotel built during the Edwardian period and commissioned in the name of a president during the Victorian period, is a luxury haven of eclectic history. Like it’s not-to-distant neighbor Born and Raised, the hotel’s lavished in the art deco style, all crown molding-topped columns, black and gold finishings, and chandeliers. I plop on the bed of white sheets and a mountain of marshmallow pillows after my belated birthday dinner with my family, still in quite effervescent spirits. It’s our final night in San Diego, after two days of wandering the Gaslamp quarter, Balboa Park, exploring the caves of La Jolla Cove, and traipsing the seascape of Coronado fueled by gelato and seafood tapas. I’m going to miss waking up to the sunlight peeking through gaps in the gold velvet curtains first thing in the morning, beckoning me to stare out the window as the skyscrapers whisper good morning. Most of all, I’m going to forever cherish each memory with my brother and parents, because it was our first weekend trip as a family in over a year. It’s the moments of laughter while eating two eggs and bacon breakfast in the wood paneled Grant Grill, or the more serious conversations about our hopes for the future while walking the beach that I’ll miss most.

Keeping it Krischic,

Kristin Vartan

Also Check Me Out On: 23ABC, ABC7 LA, Entertainment WeeklyThe Hollywood ReporterE! NewsDarling MagazinePepperdine GraphicTwitter, Facebook, and Instagram.