Vogue calls Etro, the eponymous house of Veronica Etro, “a kind of Italian answer to Dries Van Noten, which anyone who’s been reading for a while knows I LOVE.1
Easy things to look out for this fall include: menswear, animal prints, leopard print (specifically), camel (the color), jewel tones, fur (as previously mentioned), capes!!, military-inspired (again), big necklaces (again), embellishments.
They’re all also things that are either A) already in your closet or B) totally thriftable.
1. Okay, admission: Dries’ Fall 2010 was not my favorite thing that crazy Belgian’s ever done. That said, I still love love love him, want very terribly to have anything of his, want very terribly to get drunk at lunch with him. Also, even though as a whole I was not drooling over this rounds offerings, Look 43 was probably my FAVORITE thing that happened in the entirety of Fall 2010, anywhere.
I will say this, however: After the immediate grief I felt upon hearing the news, I had a wave of extreme excitement, because I hoped/knew that we’d finally get more stories to read, and then I worried whether extreme excitement isn’t perhaps an inappropriate emotion in the wake of someone’s death.
But maybe that reaction is matched to the kind of writer he was and to the kind of stories he wrote: those of grief and meaningful losses, shot through with uncomfortable, anticipatory thrills.
One of my favorite Salinger stories has always been “For Esmé — with Love and Squalor” and Esmé always seemed like such a smart, free-thinking, free-wheeling, stand-up dame. The narrator calls her forehead “exquisite,” her eyes “blasé,” and her voice “the sweetest-sounding, the surest, and it automatically led the way.” He fancies her a “truth-lover” and “small-talk detester.”
Anyone can tell the first time reading that she grew up to be Katherine Hepburn in every movie ever with Spencer Tracy; that woman with the witty, intelligent, intriguing things to say and the “enviable poise”; one of those mad femmes who wear their awkward or odd features, wet hair or quick-bit nails, as well as their well-tailored wardrobe. She is privileged but tragic, like the female Batman.
And anyway, she’s just one of my favorite literary heroines of all time, a definite contender guest for that hypothetical, ideal dinner party. You just know she’d bring a fabulous bottle.
And only the day before that old man’s passing, my old friend Emily1 had left this message on Quick, said the bird’s facebook wall: “I love the unabashed love of sumptuous fur!”
So I was thinking about Emily and then I was thinking fondly of Esmé, and thinking then that maybe the two were similar in certain ways. They aren’t quite perfect matches but they’re both strong of mind and of will, and both say what they think to charming but slightly shocking effect.
Emily is a talented writer and thanks to her I’ve got some good stories in my own arsenal. For example: When we were still in high school, Emily (and our friend Nadia) came along with my family and me to LA and Palm Springs for spring break. At an open mic at some coffee house dive in the desert, Emily sang the Cars’ “Just What I Needed,” told everyone there that she was the love child of Gene Simmons, and shot out her tongue like a banner to prove it.
That same trip, she charmed the big black bouncer at the Viper Room in LA, over 6 feet tall and 300 lbs. if he was an inch and an ounce, and swathed in head-to-toe purple. He ended up writing us a note2 to give to the bouncer at the Whiskey-a-go-go and bouncer #2 let us in to the sold-out show for free.
Another story is that in college I visited her parents’ home in Oxford, Miss and we snuck onto Faulker’s property, even though it was closed for renovations, and smoked cigarettes on his porch.3 I imagined that literary hero doing the same in the same spot and almost died.
Anyway, this post is for Emily, and Esmé, and Salinger: It is Esme’s grown-up wardrobe. Full of fur and better than you. With love.4
1. Let me be clear that Emily is NOT old. She’s young. Like us. I’ve just known her a really long time.
2. The note read, simply, “Gino, Let my friends in. -Ed.” I think Emily still has the note. Ihave physical possession of the poem that was written for Emily, Nadia, and myself at the party we were invited to after the Gene Simmons Incident. True stories, all of these.
3. Sorry Mom.
4. “Are you at all acquainted with squalor?”