100 Unforgettable Dresses by Hal Rubenstein + Joe’s Jeans = Newfound Holiday Spirit

11 Dec

Text, Vivian Kelly

Yesterday, I finally edged my way into “the Holiday Spirit”.

The event that got me into the spirit was  InStyle Fashion Director Hal Rubenstein’s Book Signing  at Joe’s 77 Mercer Street, orchestrated by Paul Wilmot Communications.

Hal Rubenstein, Author of 100 Dresses, fashion guru-personality

I’ve blogged about Joe’s Jeans before because I was entranced by Paz de la Huerta in the recent campaign that was more art than commerce [love that].  The most recent campaign – colored jeans – grabbed me too, but in a different way. The last time I wore colored jeans was in the Eighties. It was Christmas Break at Duke, and I had some money to spend and found myself at Macy’s, in the Ralph Lauren Department. I was inextricably drawn to a pair of Tiffany blue jeans. What would I wear with them? I didn’t know, or care. I wanted them, they were on sale and they were “something else”.

Years later, [last night] when I had a look at what Hal wrote in my copy of 100 Unforgettable Dresses, I was reminded of those jeans.

His signature in my copy reads, “ To Vivian, Wear Something Unforgettable, Be Someone Unforgettable”. H.R.

Every time I wore those jeans, I got compliments from fraternity guy friends, and was thrilled that “stepping out of the box” could reap ego boosting benefits.

Every since then, I’ve gone with my gut – something Hal recommends. If you love it, GET it, you WILL wear it. Last night, I luxuriated in a pedicure and gobbled up as many entries in the book as I got the opportunity to read some of the entries. A few favorites:

Slip for Butterfield 8 [Elizabeth Taylor in Helen Rose

Green Evening GownFor Atonement [Keira Knightlley in Jacquelyn Durran]

Revenge Dress [Diana Princess of Wales in Christina Stambolian]

Elizabeth Hurley launches her career thanks to Gianni Versace's "safety pin dress"


Many of these dresses are about one of my favorite themes, “The right time and the right place”. Take Elizabeth Hurley’s career making Versace safety pin dress. Prior to her 1994 appearance to then boyfriend Hugh Grant’s Three Weddings and a Funeral, she was “the girlfriend” aka arm candy. After that  came a those lucrative Estee Lauder contracts.

There’s so much more than this, consider this as an aperitif on a book that’s the perfect gift for anyone on your Holiday list who’s interested in any or all of the following: fashion, fashion icons, fashion history.

As far as the jeans, there are 55 colors to consider, but for now, the parakeet colored ones are in first place. Hey Santa, are you listening?

#1 on the list - Parakeet colored Joe's Jeans

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