Laura Laine

Don’t think we’ve said it so explicitly before, but one of the reasons we love fashion is its ability to delight. (See the phenomenon that is: TaviTulle.) Actually, it’s one of the only reasons we like fashion.

Thus, it would follow that we love fashion illustration. Alber Elbaz’s whimsically alive sketches are some of our favorites. Dez’s work is also delightful. Ruben Toledo – what’s not to love.

But Laura Laine – her work is insane. In the very best way.

Check out her portfolio: she’s hooked up with the very best of the best in the fashion world to create some of the most empoweringly feminine images we’ve seen. It’s amazing how a fantastic little drawing can do so much in the way of selling, i.e. her latest work for Vogue Nippon. Who doesn’t want a new nail polish after seeing that?




We are going to turn this, our favorite festival, upside down.

Corresponding for Lucky, we’re going to be staking out the best festival looks, talking to your favorite performers and attending all the best parties.

We’ve featured quite a few of the Lolla artists on our THC in Your Head mixes and we can’t wait to get their take on style.

SO: What are you going to wear?

See you there.


Get Glam for a Cause

So Daphne Guinness, the patron saint of The Haute Closet, is being an angel again, having scooped up the entire estate of the late Isabella Blow, the inimitable fashion luminary, daring hat-wearer and discoverer of the dearly departed Alexander McQueen. You can read about the major fashion acquisition here. Major love and thanks to Daphne for saving the treasure.

And! In other news, The Haute Closet is proudly hosting the event at the GUESS Michigan Avenue flagship tomorrow. 500 fashion lovers, cocktails, GUESS and Lucky Mag there to support the Boys & Girls Clubs of Chicago, a mission possible organizationvery near and dear to our hearts. An organization that, you never know, is probably helping out a future fashion designer right now. So come out, make a purchase, donate and feel good about some fun summer accessories or swishy dresses – and, of course, GUESS denim – to wear around town, on a hot date, or at our favorite Chicago event: Lollapalooza.

What, you haven’t already planned your Lolla wardrobe? You better: We’ll be seeking style-setters on the festival grounds, photographing and interviewing those whose style we love for Lucky Mag and Lucky Online.

Come to GUESS tomorrow from 7 – 9 and get some style advice from The Haute Closet, a mini-makeover and a photograph of you in your favorite GUESS look. You can rock it; just wait ’til you see our outfit!



March 29, 2010: In An Ideal Cashmere World . . .

Cover by Ana Juan, ‘Homage’

To Alexander McQueen.


Nena Ivon: Retail Icon

If someone were to play her in a movie, she would be Meryl Streep.

She teaches at Columbia. She’s a big supporter of Chicago theater. Red wine is her drink. And she is Saks Fifth Avenue’s most storied employee. 53 years of folding sweaters, trips to Paris and staging fashion shows.

We ask her a few questions over drinks and eel terrine at Boka:

If she wasn’t a retail legend: “I would have been an Egyptologist.”

On a good wardrobe stylist: “It’s like being a decorator. If I would have a decorator doing my home I would want them to say, ok, your apartment is you, how can we make this more you? I want it to be mine.”

On her apartment: “My apartment looks like a gypsy caravan – king of the gypsies as you understand – very layered, very eclectic, layer upon layer upon layer – literally. It doesn’t interest me if no one else likes it.”

On customer service: “It’s clicking – that’s the hard part – getting the trust level.”

On retirement: “I walk by the store and think shouldn’t I be upset? Shouldn’t I have some kind of pain? But not in the least. It was time to leave.”

On style: “Style is of the moment. Something at a certain time, in a certain place, with a certain person and how they handle that. Confidence, elegance, and assuredness is what makes a person memorable. Style is fleeting. Fashion is very definitely fleeting.”

A Nenaism: “When one loses one’s femininity, one loses everything.”

On all of the attention following her exit: “I didn’t ask for any of this. And if I had, I wouldn’t have gotten any of it.”

You would be a great guest judge on Project Runway.

“I want a pop-up book.”


With Angels

Alexander McQueen

This image, taken from McQueen’s last collection, is one in a show full of the structure, imagery and serenity of cathedrals.

As one of the many mourning the untimely passing of designer Lee McQueen, we can celebrate what will surely be an enduring legacy in fashion, art and the myriad stories recounting the unique way he moved through his life.

The last time we were in LA, we went shopping. Obviously. But we walked out of a boutique without taking home a gorgeous gold leather belt with McQueen’s stamp and signature skull to adorn it.

But it stayed with us! We dreamt about it that night. And we directed our driver to return to the boutique as we made our way to the airport so that we could pick it up and take it home.

A certain astrologer says “lacking any significant earthy placements and dominated by water … [McQueen] wasn’t really ever on the Earth plane fully.”

Whether that is true or not, the above image says, very clearly, angel with wings.

And speaking to LOVE before he took his life, he said “I want this to be a company that lives way beyond me … hopefully this house will still be going. On a spaceship. Hopping up and down above the earth.”

Of this last collection, you could rightfully say he was inspired by the divine.

Long live McQueen.

Here: Ingrid Sischy on McQueen Here: Cathedral by Raymond Carver

PS: We would be remiss if we didn’t mention that we picked up the ridiculous chic pink leggings from the McQueen/Target collab. A treasure forever.


The Totally Haute, Well-Read Affair

Celeb Benefit for Literacy Chicago

When asked what our dream affair would be by YSL’s Parisienne, we said “Like that in the song ‘Home’ by Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros.”

We lied. It would be this, The Well-Read Affair, because, happily, we live Home every day.

Put on by the young Associate Board (upon which sits The Haute Closet’s very dear friend, Sean Kienzle) the party goes down next week, Thursday, February 25th, in a to-die-for location. You should click that link.

And note! Though the back of the invite calls for ‘Business Dress’ believe us, that is NOT the case. It’s going to be one good looking group bidding on sexy bookmarks created by literacy-lovers like Madonna, Scarlett Johansson and James Earl Jones who, we might add, has put up for auction artwork containing one of the best and most useful phrases in the canon >>>

If we were Rachel Zoe, we would say that is OOC. Also, Zac Efron.

Indeed. Don your party best and benefit a most essential cause, the cause closest to our hearts: literacy(that, and having everyone feel comfortable in their clothes!) Literacy helps everyone feel more comfortable in their own skin.

Seriously, kids, it is of utmost importance that every child and adult be able to read. Can you imagine if you couldn’t read? For more about Literacy Chicago and The Well-Read Affair click here.

PS: The Well-Read Affair was sponsored in part by Sharpie. We Sharpies! They work hard to hand-color our THCIYH mix discs!


Crowning Chloë Sevigny

Best Dressed, Always, @thehautecloset

Chloë’s got massive credibility in the fashion arena: Who’s more fresh? She’s incomparable, no argument, propelled into the spotlight in large part due to her serious style sensibility.

So, we thought her GG10 acceptance dress was, of course, totally tasty. Those ruffles go for miles. And the fact that we would have had the same response had some idiot usher stepped on our dress – yes.


Get Lucky This Month

We did! Thank You, Condé Nast

A good PR friend of ours recently said, and we quote, “YOU BETTER START PROMOTING THE PRESS YOU’RE GETTING!” all exasperated like. All we can say is that we’ve just been really busy hooking Chicago up with Haute Closets!

On that note, we’re happy to report that we were selected to give Luckymag our tips on finding some of the hidden gems in the Chicago area, specifically handmade lingerie, vintage frames and the best collection of costume jewelry (and party dresses) in the city. We wanted to talk about all of the rest of the spots we live and die for in Chi-Town, but they limited us to three, so you’ll just have to read about all of the places we love here.

Anyways, we’ve been getting lots of great feedback on the Lucky piece (thank you!), so thanks to the new visitors for dropping in and the savvy editors who selected The Haute Closet for being our unique, elegant and economical self. We think it’s the best way to be.

Therefore, we invite you to pick up the January 2010 issue if you haven’t seen it and read all about it! We’re still blushing about some of the compliments!


THC in ‘Where’s Yvie?’

Spreading the Haute Coast to Coast

We’ve always been a huge fan of Hejfina. And ShopNastyGal. And Refinery29, a site we fell in love with way back when.

So, when Piera came calling from Refinery29 we were there to do whatever we could to help her out on her adventure in the Windy City. When told to meet at Reckless Records – a spot close to our heart – we fell in love. And when asked to wear a most precious purple vintage YSL jacket, the most charmingly named Yvie, we fell deeply in love.

A huge thank you to Christene and Piera, YSL and Parisienne for inviting us to share the love.

Check out all the fab ladies Yvie met on her tour to search out and spread the message of Parisienne in the great USA (don’t miss, she did it drippingly well, darlings) here. And where did we tell Yvie and the ladies to go while in Chicago? Robin RichmanChalk, and Ikram, of course.

And lastly, as we were particularly excited about meeting Yvie at Reckless Records – there’s nothing we love more than a music + fashion fusion – we’ll clue you in to our dream affair. Check out Home by Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros and fall in love. Then come back for more when we press THC in Your Head Vol 7. X

photo via


If You Can’t Bother to Get Dressed Just Add a Johnny Depp



THC Gets Some Love

We Say Thanks and about April Francis and The Haute Closet:

As an entrepreneur, fashionista, artist and aesthete who quotes Shakespeare in the midst of closet cleansing, April is more than just a smart shopper. In her own words: “I teach my clients to fish.

At The Haute Closet we’re all about making you look and feel your best. Guiding you to what’s truly awesome on you and – no matter what your budget – we show you how to make your best look happen. And we’re not just talking about one outfit: we’re talking serious style to carry you through the day, into the night and everywhere else you may go.

We love getting love, but we love giving it more. Come and get some!

photo via Mike Litchfield


The Garment Room Presents ‘Muse’

Quite Possibly the Freshest Thing at NYFW


Fall is Upon Us

Another On Top, Again

2 of the 4 Fall/Winter 09 covers from our favorite magazine. Dying over these two; Vanessa Paradis and Natalie Portman, not as great.

Can’t wait to read the Document. Get your Fall on.


It’s How You Wear It

Beyonce & Jay-Z in Love



As snapped by @philcoextra

AF at the first day of Chicago’s Pitchfork Music Festival 09, snapped by philcoextra as snapped by stopsmilingonline.

We also appreciate snaps by luckymag, refinery29, williamyan, and styledefined.


‘The September Issue’

The trailer has arrived and it is EPIC

We are so excited for this film!

Choice Quotes:

It’s a famine of beauty – it’s a FAMINE of beauty!
– André Leon Talley

OMG. Anna is, like, Madonna! – Thakoon
View below . . . and get ready to worship August 28th!


Have You Met…

Our Fabulous Intern, Dez?

So, you might have seen him in thisvideo, or to the right in the fabulous photo by Adam Kuehl, or when we took him to New York to work with us at the V is for Vintage Event, but we wanted to formally introduce you to our darling intern, Dez’Mon Omega Fair.

He’s a finalist in tonight’s FORD Walk-Off at Crimson Lounge and we know he’s going to take first place (unless it’s rigged) because he’s just that fierce. Plus, he’s already gotten training from the fabulous Miss Jay at his alma mater, SCAD.

Aside from all of that, he’s also a rather talented illustrator. When he asked to be our intern, we had seen some of his drawings on hisblog so we said sure, if you draw us a Girl! Here’s what he came up with:

Wouldn’t you say she could be the patron saint of THC?

X, we love you, D.


More Wintour

I don’t know about you, but we adore Anna Wintour. Check out this short preview from the documentary and a clip of Anna speaking on the record about The September Issue at a Sundance Q&A: See Anna Sundance.


Malia Gives Good Chi

Malia Mills is Onto Something . . .

Driving down Halsted – Spotted! – a delightful message in the window at Malia Mills.

Have you popped into her store here in Chicago? If not, she stocks fantastic stuff – her signature is a well-made, great-fitting swimsuit. Anyway, we about died when we saw the Give Good Chi tee pictured at right. With it’s hot pink lettering and homemade aesthetic, we just had to have one – and Malia delivered, making one just for the Haute Closet!

It’s a great message and we wanted to pass it along … so get into Malia Mills (2050 N. Halsted) and get some of the good stuff!

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