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On the Street....Alessandra, Milan


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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

On the Street....Alessandra, Milan

I saw my friend Alessandra when I was in Milan last week. As you can see, her style has evolved from a sportier gamine aesthetic to a more languid bohemian-femme mood.

What I love about her look here is that even though her dress is a casual cotton dress that could be bought anywhere (and in a wide range of fabrics and prices), she still finishes off the look with very special details.

You know what else I love about this look? I know a lot of girls would throw on a big cotton dress like this and call it done...almost a "fashion day-off." Alessandra, however, adds a dramatic necklace and a thoughtfully executed hairstyle and it elevates the entire look. The hair in this look is so important. I think the reason the girls I saw in Savannah looked so great, even as casually dressed college kids, was because they all seemed to have great hairstyles.

I think this shot is a great example of clothes as a plain canvas for the fashion in the rest of the roasted chicken is to a complicated French sauce.

On this look, let the Summer games begin!!

Comments on "On the Street....Alessandra, Milan"


Blogger Анна said ... (9:32 AM) : 

I love this look! So natural, gentle and chic! Beautiful sandals!


Blogger Laura said ... (9:35 AM) : 

I totally agree. Blows my mind when I look up teenage hairstyles of 1905.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (9:35 AM) : 

Lovely in every way but the arm tats. The future will be filled with senior citizens regretting their faddish scarrifications.

Or maybe I'm just a silly fogey...


Blogger Andi Cui said ... (9:36 AM) : 

Such a beautiful picture!
Love the necklace!!!


Blogger Beatrice B. said ... (9:37 AM) : 

I love her tattoo and the hairdo... so diverse and gorgeous together


Blogger Nomadic D. said ... (9:38 AM) : 

A roast chicken to a french sauce indeed! Lovely photo, and I agree with you about the additions of the necklace and the thoughtful hairstyle. Also just wanted to say I love these posts where we get to see what goes through your mind when you make your selections, love to read your wordier musings.


Anonymous Lauren said ... (9:43 AM) : 

Love, love, love this dress. And you're right, it is a perfect canvas for building a look. So many possibilities!

The Styleseer


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (9:52 AM) : 

radical tattoos!!! I'm thinking about her in some 15 years... good enough?


Anonymous Bohemian Style said ... (9:56 AM) : 

So Pretty!! Love the tats with the gold.


Blogger caribbelle said ... (10:00 AM) : 

the accessories make the outfit. so simple yet elegant.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (10:01 AM) : 

i usually cringe at tattoos, especially on women, but... wow!


Blogger the20'sgirl said ... (10:03 AM) : 

I love her sandals! She looks elegant and really relaxed.
Sorry for my English, I'm spanish.
And I'm following you ;)


Anonymous s said ... (10:05 AM) : 

Just.... LOOOOOVE <3

The shoes and the necklace are perfect ;)



Blogger Angela Jessyana said ... (10:05 AM) : 

i love her necklace. great photo!


Blogger Annie Chang said ... (10:11 AM) : 

dandy dress + necklace!


Anonymous all-in-the-silhouette said ... (10:17 AM) : 

Great tribute to summer. Clean and cool, right down to the makeup. Classy, but practical.


Blogger Alice Olive said ... (10:18 AM) : 

Agree - her attention to detail makes this simple and elegant.


Blogger Halktan Biri said ... (10:26 AM) : 

like it!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (10:27 AM) : 

Yup hair is important in the South, for all races.....

"Never does a Georgia Peach make even a supermarket run without hair and nails done."

.......aaaaaand thats why i moved to the northeast :)


Blogger Easy and Elegant Life said ... (10:39 AM) : 

How nice to see a chic white sandal instead of the flip-flops that are more common in my college town. That helps to elevate a look, too.


Blogger comme fraiche said ... (10:40 AM) : 

I like the white in her sandals as they mix a little color in with what she's wearing


Blogger Maryam Maquillage said ... (10:41 AM) : 

her anchor tattoo is so fitting! i don't even like tattoos...


Blogger Caddy said ... (10:47 AM) : 

I concur! :D Her adding accessories and styling her hair the way she did, elevates her look.


Blogger 2heels1flash said ... (10:49 AM) : 

The very clean shoes are perfect with the sport dress and the tatoos


Hope to meet you some day. we share almost all the opinions!!!!!


Anonymous haka said ... (10:53 AM) : 

I love this shot, the shoes are so chic and simple, mixed with the dress and bangle. perfect outfit


Blogger JAKARECH said ... (10:55 AM) : 

this is so sublime!


Blogger Sing of Singature Style said ... (10:56 AM) : 

Totally agree. Even casual pieces can be amped up with hair and accessories. Her necklace is beautiful.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (10:58 AM) : 

In my humble opinion, to me, this is what 'fashion' is about. It's taking something that can be fairly simple and making it your own. I feel like most of the looks out there are so pretentious, too thought out, too complicated, too much stuff, too much trying to show the world what you're about and shouting "this is my identity!!", too much complicated outside, no substance inside. Whilst perhaps Alessandra considered the shoes, the accessories, or the hair, it still speaks volumes of simplicity, so if I had a conversation with her, her personality would hopefully shine, rather than her clothes taking over the conversation.


Blogger Martha said ... (10:58 AM) : 

She's got great tattoos! M X


Blogger Liege' said ... (11:14 AM) : 

I love everything about this look, especially the necklace!


Blogger Madame Chic Bcn said ... (11:19 AM) : 

LESS IS MORE. One of my favourites fashion mantras!!


Blogger Angel said ... (11:27 AM) : 

So Nice, I think the simplicity is so elegant on how she pulls this off.

Angels Point of View - Street Style Photography


Anonymous alessandra de leonardis said ... (12:14 PM) : 

during my fashion designer life I always tried to reach the inner let's go simple!!!


Anonymous proletarian Great Gatsby said ... (12:26 PM) : 

Elegant, natural and personal at the same time...And the most important is the woman you show us,not was she wears.You got it one time more!


Anonymous SarahV said ... (12:37 PM) : 

She's so chic, kind of bohemian too!


Anonymous Shervin nassi said ... (12:42 PM) : 

SIMPLE ELEGANCE love is so deep!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (12:45 PM) : 

true goddess


Blogger dinamita.paquita said ... (12:53 PM) : 

I looove the tattou!!


Anonymous Elisabethbaysset said ... (1:03 PM) : 

Tranquille , cette belle personne est là , très belle ,
très Italienne .Un plaisir ! EB


Blogger TruetoTrend said ... (1:16 PM) : 

The necklace makes everything work; I love how ancient Greek style sandals are all the rage this summer.


Blogger zoom said ... (1:22 PM) : 



Anonymous Anonymous said ... (1:28 PM) : 

the tshirt dress. looks like it might be the thing these warmer seasons. it's too reasonable and such a cheat - getting to look chic and feel like you're in your nightie.


Anonymous Victoria Regia said ... (1:31 PM) : 

She's very elegant. Love her dress!


Blogger Em Cubero said ... (1:35 PM) : 

I love it =)


Anonymous mon sac by me said ... (1:40 PM) : 

Very Chic tatoo...... !


Anonymous Aimes said ... (1:57 PM) : 

GORGEOUS!!!!! So simple, casual, elegant.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (2:05 PM) : 

nice toes ;)


Blogger Marcel Da Chump said ... (2:07 PM) : 

Inspires me to sing "Sophisticated Lady".


Blogger Secondhand Stella said ... (2:08 PM) : 

LOVE the necklace. Amazing!


Anonymous balthasar said ... (2:19 PM) : 

absolutely adorable!



Blogger Kate said ... (2:34 PM) : 

I love this so much, her tattoos also add a really great touch to her style.

Kate - BASIIK Blog


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (2:49 PM) : 

This is very beautiful!


Anonymous Marly said ... (2:59 PM) : 

Great look - relaxed, yet chique.

Also I love it when you write down your thoughts on the look and why you like it.
Thanks so much, looking at your blog always makes my day.

Love from Germany.


Blogger Evan said ... (3:11 PM) : 

Elegant ..


Blogger Maryli said ... (3:13 PM) : 

I love this.


Blogger Unknown said ... (3:43 PM) : 

Cool shoes and I do love the grey outfit!


Blogger Judith Ross said ... (3:45 PM) : 

Hi Scott,
Thanks so much for your commentary about why this look works. I found it very educational and helpful. And, yes, I agree, the details elevate a plain dress into something special.


Blogger That's Not My Age said ... (3:45 PM) : 

I do like simple, easy-to-wear clothes - as Alessandra proves with the right accessories they can look very chic.


Blogger GINA BIBER said ... (3:49 PM) : 

Your reaction to this ensemble is interesting to me. Actually, I had an opposite reaction. Often women think that more is more and so they stack on accessories, when in fact, they detract from a clean and polished look. Though her neckless is beautiful, though here it just looks cluttered. The hair and nail polish were sufficient alone.


Blogger Project Curve said ... (3:51 PM) : 

the neck piece and the hair style absolutely makes the look..i usually go without accesories but i like having a statement piece on even on plain clothes.


Blogger Giada said ... (3:55 PM) : 

I love it!


Blogger Rachael said ... (3:58 PM) : 

So pretty! Love the casual maxi dress and the beautiful chunky necklace.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (4:02 PM) : 

The tatoo is a nice part of the look.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (4:05 PM) : 

Love the tattooed tripart band on her lower arm... very striking.

Speaking of ink: I honestly don't understand why some folks find tattoos off-putting. Could anyone explain his/her negative response? (That's a serious question--I'm genuinely curious.)


Blogger Lenita said ... (4:14 PM) : 

great look! I think the tatoos helped a lot


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (4:59 PM) : 

I agree, and I really love the tattoo- Tattoos can really add a whole other element to an outfit, that no accessory can do! Love the look- And I prefer this much more feminine look too- Less aggressive, more fluid and inviting- Without comprimising herstyle. Bravoooo


Blogger The Foolish Aesthete said ... (5:17 PM) : 

Beautiful. Simple doesn't mean boring. That necklace is gorgeous and was the perfect touch.


Blogger Meredith M Howard said ... (5:25 PM) : 

I love the necklace. Gray and gold seems to be the hot color combination right now.

- Meredith


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (5:56 PM) : 

I'm so glad to see Alessandra again! I've been quite taken by her esthetic ever since I discovered her here on The Sartorialist (or was it that Crate and Barrel ad?) I find her evolving look and innovative vision to be inspirational and have a hard time knowing how to find more of it.

Thanks! for the photo :)


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (6:58 PM) : 

Gorgeous. The hint of white from the sandals is just so refreshing.

The Re-Stylist


Blogger rose said ... (7:27 PM) : 

loving the tattoes! she wears them so very well...


Blogger Unknown said ... (8:00 PM) : 

This outfit is so perfect. I love her choice in accessories when it comes to the simple dress. I also love your description on what makes this outfit so wonderful.


Blogger Violet Cadburry said ... (9:05 PM) : 

So Grecian. Tattoos don't bother me. I have seen some pretty ugly old arms that could use a tat or two if just to connect the age spots into something more attractive.


Anonymous Maryanne said ... (9:56 PM) : 

the elements of white and silver enhance the steel grey.


Blogger ADJ said ... (10:10 PM) : 

She is so graceful and elegant!


Blogger nikkidelapaz said ... (10:46 PM) : 

love her style :) and tattoos :)

Don't live life on fast forward. Coast Thru Life.


Blogger Olya Chess said ... (11:04 PM) : 

great outfit !! i like it !! stanning!!


Anonymous yv said ... (11:50 PM) : 

her necklace!


Blogger Unknown said ... (1:19 AM) : 

how gorgeous is this. effortless chic :D


Blogger Unknown said ... (2:28 AM) : 

so lovely


Blogger Dipika Vijay said ... (2:52 AM) : 

Fabulous casually stylish look! Love this lady's aesthetics... adding a touch of gold (neckpiece and bracelet) to her otherwise grey outfit lends a rich-esque feel. The tattoo, black woven in the bracelet and black polish give a bohemian twist to the look and the white chappals extend the casualness of the dress. the overall look is leant a very clean and 'I know how i like it' effect by the hairdo. just love the melange!


Blogger Sasha said ... (3:23 AM) : 

this is how i want to look all summer long!

i love how her simple tattoos are such a strong accessory paired with the geometric shape of her necklace.


Blogger Monia said ... (4:18 AM) : 

I love the mix, sport + elegant!
Monia, Rome


Anonymous IS THIS IT? models review said ... (4:19 AM) : 

"a great example of clothes as a plain canvas for the fashion in the rest of the roasted chicken is to a complicated French sauce" - haha absolutely, I totally agree, great point...


Blogger † Faire La Gueule † said ... (4:23 AM) : 



Blogger Hair Romance said ... (4:25 AM) : 

I so agree. Your hair is your best accessory and completes your outfit. It doesn't cost anything to style your hair well either.


Blogger Trine said ... (5:47 AM) : 

Love the second girls circle-tattoos!!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (5:48 AM) : 

She has got very beautiful feets.


Anonymous BeLighter said ... (7:15 AM) : 

I couldn't agree more with you!
It's all about those details; the accessories, including hair!!!
It does make a huge difference, when the clothes you're wearing are this "plain"

Great post!


Blogger fashionxxi said ... (7:41 AM) : 

Nice outfit!


Anonymous Misha said ... (8:23 AM) : 

the pose, the tattoo, the clothes, the hair, reminded me of Rosie of "We can do it!" . Indeed she can :-)


Blogger Queen of Hearts said ... (8:26 AM) : 

She looks very "ancient Roman" to me (the necklace, the hairdo, even the sandals...).
I love this look, for its simplicity yet for its thoughtfulness as well.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (8:54 AM) : 

Lovely look and though i am not a fan of tattoos these do add stylish enhancements. If she were standing and her head turned to a profile shot she would look as if she stepped out of ancient Egyptian pyramid.

To the commenter on why some folks don't like tattoos.
1.) They are permanent . 2.) older generations associate them with tough, anti social pose, and less elegant- I realize it is a hip look like long hair on guys in the sixties 3.) They don't look good as the body ages-one needs to be more attentive to appearance as the years go by. 4.) Older folks associate tats with men, who often sheepishly said they were young and drunk when they thought tattoos were a good idea.
Yet if that makes one feel good about themselves and they can enjoy the ink as they grow old, certainly enjoy them.


Blogger Kera said ... (10:17 AM) : 

simply lovely.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (11:34 AM) : 

reminds me of Carla Sozzani.. !!!!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (12:03 PM) : 

Who makes that dress and sandals? Does anyone know?


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (12:09 PM) : 

I too love the hair, but there is no style to it so I'm confused. It's just pulled back - which I love, but to emphasize that it's a "style" is silly. Plus you can't really see what it is because she has her hands wrapped around the ponytail?

I think American women overdue their hair way too much by straightening etc. I love the French and Italian style which is no style at all even if your dressed up. Just let it do what's it's going to do and concentrate on your clothes. Very sexy.

Love the sandals and dress. Not crazy about the necklace and dislike the tattoos very much.


Blogger Kacie - With Love said ... (12:52 PM) : 

Total casual elegance. You're so right about the hair. I'm going to start doing mine daily. Even though I have a newborn I can still refine my look and be comfortable!!!



Anonymous Anonymous said ... (1:01 PM) : 

Beautiful dress ! :)


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (2:59 PM) : 

@ Anonymous 8:54--thanks for your response (and for your respectful approach to those who think differently).


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (12:34 AM) : 

Your friend is a work of art; I long to know her thoughts. Fluidly elegant from head to toes! The neckline garnishment, however, appears to armor her appearance.


Blogger Michelle said ... (6:20 AM) : 

Mmm simple, comfy and mega-jewelry. Perfect outfit for a casual day.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (6:37 AM) : 

Just perfection !!!


Blogger Bernadette said ... (8:35 AM) : 

Your friend Alessandra combines the contemporary with elements that could have jumped straight out of the Iliad (hairdo/jewellery); the result is edgy and timeless. Innate style. Just Gorgeous.



Blogger Ms Wanda said ... (9:45 AM) : 

Yes, totally agree, Love it!


Blogger libelulaseneldesierto said ... (4:52 PM) : 

Is one of the best looks I have ever seen. It's really simple, sport... but IT'S AMAZING!!!


Blogger ADDENDUM handmade said ... (6:42 PM) : 

So classy! Now I want a dress like that...


Anonymous Kali said ... (10:40 PM) : 

Her hair looks so different! How did it grow so much in under two months?! I was so inspired by her gamine look, this is a bit of a surprise. I wouldn't have associated the two identities if I hadn't done a search for your other posts about her.

I like that the graphic pattern of the dark nail polish seems to camouflage in plain sight. I love the hard dark lines against such a soft, organic look.

@ Anonymous 12:09 There are a lot of subtleties that make this a style. I agree with you that American women too often forget that "styled" doesn't always mean that the natural texture is done away with.


Blogger Lady Maphet said ... (11:24 PM) : 

Great (and insightful) commentary!


Anonymous caroline said ... (9:00 AM) : 

J'adore la reference culinaire sur la fin!! Bravo! :)


Anonymous psh said ... (10:23 AM) : 

great, great...


Blogger Fairy Ondine said ... (10:35 AM) : 

Attractive.. I'd call it The MODERN Ancient Greek lOOk.. Alessandra has character, I can tell from the tattoo, hair, glans.. she is in a gladiator's woman shoes !!


Anonymous FePa Design said ... (8:09 PM) : 

amazing dress!!!! LOVE IT!!! is just simply an elegant... wowww~~~


Anonymous amanda said ... (11:24 PM) : 

love her styling. very greek goddess-y imho, dig the tattoos too.


Blogger miss x said ... (1:48 PM) : 

This image is inspiring to me-- a striking juxtaposition of 1930s Dadaist avant-garde minimalism and flourishes of Egyptian / ancient Greek mysticism.... Shall we call it Neoclassical?

Incidnetally, I found similar sandals on, Astria suede sandals in beechwood. $98

Now where do we find such a dress?


Blogger Zornitsa said ... (3:10 PM) : 

I just love her tatoos!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (12:05 PM) : 

loving the simple dress and chunky accessories!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (8:50 PM) : 

It is really nice to hear your opinion on the photograph! I always notice little things but to hear from the photographer themselves is different.


Anonymous The Styley said ... (12:39 AM) : 

You've captured a lovely moment here. And I really enjoy your meditations on how various outfits are put together--during the most recent fashion week you wrote something about how to be inspired by runway looks when one can't afford them, and how to incorporate what they have to say into any wardrobe, no matter what the budget. Great food for thought.


Anonymous Hannah said ... (5:24 AM) : 

Loving the simplicity of the dress coupled with the accessories!


Blogger Bernd said ... (6:45 AM) : 

What a great shot, so unique and the dress looks so simple and comfy. Great work


Blogger Wang's Factory said ... (8:38 AM) : 

Her tattoos are very eye catching


Blogger il fait du soleil said ... (5:22 PM) : 

it's all perfect.. necklace/tatts/shoes/hair... great outfit... def not 'fashion day off'! xx


Blogger Mertxe Hernàndez said ... (5:31 AM) : 

She is very natural,, like it! very fashion and simple at the same time...!!! love love love fashionn...!!!



Anonymous Anonymous said ... (6:39 PM) : 

stunning...what beautiful tattoos.


Blogger Charlotte said ... (6:57 AM) : 

What a perfect combination! Love that necklace. x


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (12:23 PM) : 

Necklace is from COS a few seasons back....


Anonymous Hanna said ... (4:43 PM) : 

Beautiful,i also love the sandals. Do you know where are they from? Just looking for sandals like this. Would be very kind of you to give me an answer!

Love, Hanna


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