The fashionable showed up for Advanced Style at the Gene Siskel Film Center | Bleader

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The fashionable showed up for Advanced Style at the Gene Siskel Film Center

Posted By on 10.29.14 at 01:00 PM

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Street View is a fashion series in which Isa Giallorenzo spotlights some of the coolest styles seen in Chicago.


Western culture is obsessed with youth—and pretty much always has been—but we've also grown to appreciate what the more experienced set has to offer: style. Loads of it, as Ari Seth Cohen showcases on his superpopular blog, Advanced Style, and in the eponymous documentary it spawned, which is showing at the Gene Siskel Film Center until tomorrow.

Growing up in San Diego with two grandmothers he deeply admired, Cohen felt like connecting with an older generation once he moved to New York City. He first contacted actress and model Mimi Wedell, the lady who's posing with him on his blog's header. The rest is history.

Last Friday, Chicago was treated to a bit of that history at the local opening of Cohen's film, which features some of his Advanced Style muses: Tziporah Salamon, Debra Rapoport, Lynn Dell Cohen (aka the Countess of Glamour), Joyce Carpati, Jacquie Tajah Murdock, Zelda Kaplan, and Ilona Royce Smithkin, all of whom range from 62 to 95 years old. If you go see the film, two pieces of advice: dress to impress and wear waterproof mascara.

Some of the opening's attendees did dress to the nines, including the event's organizer, Kristen Kaza of No Small Plans Productions and a Siskel Center council member, who was decked out in a gorgeous vintage jumpsuit herself. Another style maven was Darlene Schuff, pictured above. Part of the Advanced Style entourage—she showed me proof on her iPhone—Darlene looked like she was plucked right from the movie. See her and other fabulous attendees below - and also on the Très Awesome blog.

Darlene Schuff is wearing a velvet and tulle ensemble by local designer and SAIC alumnus Cynthia Ashby, a pin by Columbia college professor Beata Kania, and a hat by Diane Harty.
  • Isa Giallorenzo
  • Darlene Schuff is wearing a velvet and tulle ensemble by local designer and SAIC alumna Cynthia Ashby, a pin by Columbia College professor Beata Kania, and a hat by Diane Harty.

Her bracelets - made out of toilet paper rolls - are by Advanced Style star Debra Rapoport ...
  • Isa Giallorenzo
  • Her bracelets—made out of toilet paper rolls—are by Advanced Style star Debra Rapoport . . .

... her bubble wrap bag by Lilith...

... and her shoes by Arche.

Darlene Schuff in NYC...
  • Darlene Schuff in NYC . . .

... with Ari Seth Cohen and Debra Rapoport...
  • . . . with Ari Seth Cohen and Debra Rapoport . . .

... and with the Advanced Style crew.
  • . . . and with the Advanced Style crew.

Kristen Kaza, who organized the event

Kristen Kaza

Style expert and TV personality Amy Tara Koch, who mediated the Skype talk with Ari Seth Cohen after the movie.
  • Isa Giallorenzo
  • Style expert and TV personality Amy Tara Koch, who mediated the Skype talk with Ari Seth Cohen after the movie

Event planner Tamar Westphal

Tamar Westphal

Karyn Dethrow, co-owner of Market Supply Co. vintage shop in Pilsen - now on 18th St.
  • Isa Giallorenzo
  • Karyn Dethrow, co-owner of Market Supply Co. vintage shop in Pilsen—now on 18th St.

Karyn Dethrow - fun fact: she was the model of the first Reader glossy cover.
  • Isa Giallorenzo
  • Karyn Dethrow fun fact: she was the model on the first glossy Reader cover.

Jules Breen of The Antique and Resale Shoppe with a bag by Alicja Pulit...
  • Isa Giallorenzo
  • Jules Breen of The Antique and Resale Shoppe with a bag by Alicja Pulit . . .

... and necklace by Beata Kania

Pat of Project Minima blog, who has been sewing her own clothes for four years now - including the garments shes wearing above.
  • Isa Giallorenzo
  • Pat of Project Minima blog, who has been sewing her own clothes for four years now—including the garments she's wearing here.

Alysia of No Small Plans Productions


Artist Alexandria Eregbu

Marketing maven Mel Muoio

Mel Muoios red-carpet-ready booties

A.D. of Dapper Q blog, Grace of Hello Sleepy Whale, and Rick
  • Isa Giallorenzo
  • A.D. of Dapper Q blog, Grace of Hello Sleepy Whale, and Rick

Mary Eleanor Wallace of Tusk, this years Best Boutique With Odd Hours of Operation
  • Isa Giallorenzo
  • Mary Eleanor Wallace of Tusk, a 2014 Best of Chicago winner for Best Boutique With Odd Hours of Operation

And, to finish, a few pearls of wisdom from the movie:

"I never wanted to look young, I wanted to look great."
"I get dressed up for the theater of my life every day."
"Money has nothing to do with style."
"Never wear a bag over your chest."
"Style is healing."
"Good style improves the environment for everybody."
"Dressing well has lots of perks. Not only do you feel wonderful but you meet a lot of people who think you're wonderful."
"I always say that I'm between 50 and death. I can't have green bananas anymore."
"I never felt too critical of myself."
"Are you dancing?" "Very rarely because my partners are all dead."
"From the waist up my body is wonderful. From the waist down, don't ask don't tell."
"Anything I have two of, one hurts."
"There is no time limit to anything. When you look good, you look good."

See more Chicago street style in the Chicago Looks blog.

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