Helping herself to husband's jackets

CANDID CLOSET

February 03, 1994|By Mary Corey | Mary Corey,Sun Staff Writer

Jill Turnbull knows her way around a closet -- whether it's her own or someone else's. As a hair salon owner and stylist, she's well-versed in the tricks of the fashion trade.

While that's given her an advantage in her own wardrobe, Ms. Turnbull, whose nickname is Blue, lets her own taste, not current trends, guide her.

She's hardly boring, though. When she's styling a fashion shoot, comfort is the key. But when she's in her new Pikesville salon Etches, she's more outrageous.

"In the salon, I need to look very good," says Ms. Turnbull, 33, who lives in Sparks. "I've got to practice what I'm preaching there."

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What's your style?

It's chic, young, classical and avant-garde. They all contradict each other, but it all works. My wardrobe is a collection of places I've been. I have a brass pendant from Tibet, a silk body suit from Germany, a cotton shirt from Australia.

Do you really raid your husband's closet?

This may sound really silly, but we've been married a year, and I'm so crazy in love with him that I want to crawl in his skin. I can't do that so I wear his clothes.

What of his do you wear most?

Jackets. He's 6 feet; I'm 5 feet, so I roll up the sleeves a lot and expose these great linings. There's one plaid jacket -- red and orange and green -- that's my favorite.

How does he feel about that?

He loves it. When we go shopping, he gets to buy twice as much.

What's your funniest clothing story?

One year I was accepting a hairdressing award in Australia and I had on this black dress that I'd covered in bra cups. The RTC reception was in a hotel, and I wound up on the escalator with this little boy. You couldn't print what he was saying about me. It was way hilarious.

What was the point of wearing bra cups?

Everyone was making a statement about lingerie at the time. That's just the kind of person I am. I love black clothing. I got married in a black dress. The preacher dropped his jaw as I was coming down the carpet. It was gorgeous. My in-laws are very conservative, so the dress got a lot of attention.

What's your outfit of the moment?

I have these way-funky baggy lace pants. If I could wear them every day, I would. They're that baby doll cutesy look of the moment.

One of the things you're known for is your glasses. How did that get started?

You have to wear them every day. When confronted with that, it's boring to wear the same pair all the time. I see them as an extension of my personality.

What's your funkiest pair?

I don't need to get attention, so they're not that funky. My favorite pair is black and by Christian Dior. They're square on top and round on the bottom.

You grew up in Australia. How has living in the States altered your style?

I'm a little kid in a candy shop. There's so much more here. America is so consumer-oriented. I bought one of Donna Karan's outfits in London. It was like my treat for the whole year. Here you can buy 10 things for what I paid for this one.

Are there any vestiges of Australia still in your closet? I don't change my wardrobe, so I have some old faithfuls. I have this wonderful black leather jacket that I've had for years. This year I added fringe down the side.

Is there anything in your closet that you won't wear again?

I have a bright blue sequin dress with a full tulle skirt and these suede things hanging off it. It makes such a statement that you can only wear it once.

Do you know some dressers? Let us know. Write to Mary Corey, The Baltimore Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore 21278.

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