Claire Cote

Glimpsed At Silo Point's Style Sky Lounge

August 23, 2009|By Sloane Brown | Sloane Brown,Special to the Baltimore Sun

Claire Cote was a standout at a party at Silo Point's Style Sky Lounge. The 22-year-old Charles Village resident, who works for Clementine (the party's caterer), starts her job this fall as an after-school dance teacher in Mount Washington. Her fashion philosophy reflects her contemporary dancer's free spirit. "I don't have many fashion rules. Don't overdress or over-accessorize. Do wear whatever you want. I agree there are certain things that are more fashionable than others. But, if you really like something, you should wear it. And wear it with pride."

The look: Denim Miss Sixty dress. Silver, bone and onyx necklace. Sandalwood bead and glass "evil eye" bracelet. Braided hemp bracelet. Oxidized silver disc earrings. Brown Rampage flat espadrilles.

Where it came from: The sundress was a gift from her mother. Her shoes were a T.J. Maxx find. Her necklace was a gift, as was the bracelet - "from a Turkish friend." Her hemp bracelet came from a friend who's a hemp lobbyist in Washington. "He makes all of his friends wear them." She bought her earrings in a little jewelry store in France.

It's not about the labels: "I am interested in fashion. But, brands are not as important to me. It's more about the actual item and how I like it ... [When I'm getting dressed], usually I go with my first instinct. I like to try to put things together. I don't like to wear the same thing all the time, so I mix and match things that I haven't put together yet."

She shops out of the mainstream: "I shop fairly regularly, but mostly at thrift stores. ... By shopping secondhand, I'm not supporting places that sell products made in factories outside the United States that use child labor. I don't want to contribute to the industry by giving these companies my money. That's one reason I like American Apparel. If I had more money, I would shop there more. ... I get a lot of things when I travel."

Color her world: "I like gray a lot. It goes with a lot of things, so I can wear a bright color and tone it down with gray. I'm drawn to coral and peach and fuchsia. I'm not a huge pink person, but I do like those shades. I really like blues - royal blue and indigo."

Some of her favorite things: "I have a golden-blue brocade fabric in a short mini-dress with long sleeves and a big collar. I have a lot of floral print dresses. There's another jean dress by Tommy Hilfiger that I've had forever. It's strapless, made of very, very soft jean fabric and very light."

She's not afraid of renovating: "I often end up cutting the [thrift store] skirts shorter. I like the fabrics, but they're long and not in style. So I cut them shorter and make them cute. I take in shirts sometimes - although I'm embracing a baggy shirt [look] right now. ... I got this one-piece jumpsuit from my mom that's Donna Karan from the '70s or '80s. I didn't feel like it worked so well in its original form. I cut the legs and rolled them up and cuffed the sleeves. I think it works. I wear it with flowery sneakers. I also wore it with a gray lace tube-top and let that show underneath."

Sloane Brown can be contacted at sloane@sloanebrown.com.

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