By Vanessa Pinto
I graduated with my Master of Arts degree from NYU in May of 2012 without a single, age appropriate, tasteful career outfit. While still in school I shirked my duty of buying clothes that would be best fitted for work related purposes. I was spending my money on party outfits, ripped denim, open back knitted shirts, and sheer, embellished blouses. It was far from sartorial splendor.
Internships and interviews always consisted of the traditional boyish Oxford blazer and loose-fitting slacks with flats that look like they should have been ditched three seasons ago. I knew when I started my job in September I could not and did not desire to wear a mundane button down and boxy khaki slacks to work day in and day out.
In order to revamp my style of dress, my intention was to incorporate versatile, essential pieces that I could interchange between work and off days. I did not want my closet to have that concrete divide between my career outfits and my everyday staples.
I began looking to the Duchess of Cambridge’s style in particular about a year after I traveled abroad to London and Oxford during my graduate degree. During my time in England, I had discovered some notable High Street stores and brands including Reiss, Miss Selfridge, and Warehouse, while becoming more intrigued with stores more popular on the European front including Zara, and Dorothy Perkins. These were the brands I looked to for revamping my wardrobe the following year.
The allure of Britain’s top designers drew me in even further. While conducting some further research, I became enamored with top designers such as Beulah London, Temperley, milliner Philip Treacy. Katherine Hooker, Moloh, and LK Bennett. Though like Catherine, reasonably priced outfits dominate my wardrobe. Sprinkled in are top designer pieces and bespoken dresses and coats, including one coat and jacket from Katherine Hooker, a fascinator by Treacy, and a few coats and dresses by Reiss. I am thrilled that I just purchased my very own L.K. Bennett dress and a pair of rose colored flats that I just adore.
Besides the prolific style of the Duchess, in my opinion, clothing made in Britain are tailored so beautifully and made to last. The material quality is superior, the look and feel is sophisticated, and the pieces are timeless. I could certainly see wearing every new piece of clothing I own for ten to twenty years down the road, and passing it on to my own daughter when she becomes of age.
The Duchess’s style is one that I feel every woman should look to for fundamental, stylish pieces. What she has launched is elegance in everyday dress that can appeal to all women. As is said that not all clothing styles will look good on everyone; however, the Duchess has in a sense dismissed that rule.
I now embrace my fashion closet rather than feeling overwhelmed by it. I was able to put away or sell many of my over-the-top pieces and swoon over my now more versatile and functional wardrobe. It is an investment rather than a money drain as it used to be. I look and feel so much better, and now actually live in my outfits that fit my taste and personality best.
Vanessa is the Founder and Editor of East End Taste. She blogs about all things food related in the Hamptons on Long Island. Her writing has appeared in Psychology Today, Hamptons Magazine, Long Island Pulse, Pregnancy & Newborn, and more. You can find Vanessa on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook @EastEndTaste.