December 5th, 2022

What Goes Around, Comes Around

While scrolling through Net-a-Porter’s “What’s New” email, I spied this Valentino dress and I swear my heart stopped. My mother wore the first iteration on the left when I was a little girl, then in the ’90s I borrowed it to baptize my daughters. It took a village to zip me in this morning, but I’m glad I held on to her Valentino dresses. Mother’s shift is navy with cream piping and ’60s-style buttons — the Rockstuds and both pockets on the waist make the updated version modern. #Don’tOverPurge

  • I guess true lesson is but less but invest in classic, quality pieces

    Terri FriedmanDecember 5th, 2022  8:37 AM

  • Both are lovely versions to own; though I wish more dresses would be made in navy instead of the ever present black. There is something very chic and French about navy that I love.

    Hadassah WeiszDecember 5th, 2022  8:38 AM

  • Adore both! A simple silhouette, piping, buttons.

    GigiDecember 5th, 2022  9:11 AM

  • Preston, you look amazing! A great post telling a beautiful story through clothing. And the message to not over purge is so important! Bravissima!

    KristiDecember 5th, 2022  9:32 AM

  • I love a good redux. I have to say, your mother’s version edges out the Valentino in navy /cream. +1 to the comment ^^ on wishing Navy was more of a go to for designers than always black. The case for not over purging continues to prove itself out.

    MelissaDecember 5th, 2022  9:35 AM

  • LOL. It took a village to zip me in. I love it! Same here.

    LorraineDecember 5th, 2022  9:53 AM

  • What a beautiful story. It’s the story that gets me with clothes, either the one it tells about us or the one we tell about the garment. Bought a mens pinstripe wool suit from the fifties when I was in Portobello on my recent trip. Apparently I’m built that way lol because the pants I’m just cinching with a belt and the jacket went to my tailor to remove the shoulder pads but that’s it.
    Love “took a village”. You’d never know, looks fantastic.

    SueMDecember 5th, 2022  10:12 AM

  • What a classic dress! And your mom’s too! Love this.

    KimDecember 5th, 2022  10:34 AM

  • The most beautiful part of the story to me is how important it was in the lives of your 3 generations. What sweet memories.

    Urvi DalalDecember 5th, 2022  10:43 AM

  • prefer your mother’s! You look amazing. xo

    JenniferDecember 5th, 2022  11:00 AM

  • Preston —

    As I am a professional fashion archivist, I absolutely love this post. It is no surprise to those of us working in fashion that designers at the major houses are constantly revisiting their archives for inspiration. It’s always smart to invest in the classics, and how lovely that you have your Mother’s original. You look fabulous in it.

    Julie Ann

    Julie AnnDecember 5th, 2022  12:25 PM

  • Lovely! You wear it well—and it’s nice to hear the family memories woven in with the clothing. I’ve often wondered, too, about the story behind your C.Z. Guest portrait. You are both women who know your own style.

    RMDecember 5th, 2022  1:21 PM

  • I always tell my (twenty-something) girls that there is an art to knowing what to keep. Excellent post as always!

    HollyDecember 5th, 2022  3:06 PM

  • The moment I saw your mother’s navy dress with cream piping,
    I instantly thought of a navy Brooks Brothers blazer piped in ivory I wore a lot in the early 70’s.
    It was like part of a uniform that served me well even though I wasn’t that fond of the shade of navy – seemed too bright.

    For that reason, I like your mother’s dress better because the shade of navy in the photo looks like a true navy – my favorite – almost black –
    and I think more sophisticated shade. Is it?

    And because it was your mother’s all the more reason for you to treasure it –
    can relate to that as I adored my mother who I lost when I was 19.
    She sewed beautifully.
    Using Vogue patterns, the clothes she made were chic and as beautifully constructed on the inside as they were on the outside.
    Unfortunately, I don’t have any of them as they were disposed of when I was away at college.
    Ditto, the doll clothes she made which were even more incredible!!

    So, you are a lucky daughter!

    And about over purging: it reminded me of a black, short sleeved, button down linen Ralph Lauren shirt dress I bought in Bendel’s in the early 80’s.
    Very rarely wear it, but pulled it out of the closet last year and with the accessories I chose, it suited the circumstances perfectly –
    another reliable classic ready to serve at a moment’s notice whether it’s dressed up or down.

    Lastly, also found “it took a village” very amusing – agree with SueM – you’d never know it!

    JaniceDecember 5th, 2022  4:06 PM

  • You look just stunning! Your mother’s is perfection on you. Such a classic piece. Your girls(one of them) will be lucky to get it some day. I would love for you to profile what skincare you use currently. Your skin always has such a beautiful glow.

    Thank you for all of your timeless and sagacious insight always.

    Merry Christmas!


    AmyDecember 5th, 2022  5:36 PM

  • Love !!

    Helen PennoyerDecember 5th, 2022  10:35 PM

  • What a wonderful memory you have there in your closet! I love that you remember what you wore for your daughters’ baptisms. I can remember exactly what I wore to my children’s as well! I also remember having large sugar cutout cookies made with a large curly lamb cookie cutter (copper, Martha Stewart’s back in the mid-80’s!) and frosted, light blue for my son, pink for my daughter. I remember a divine hazelnut cake recipe I had made for the occasion (I transported all of this 55 miles to my parent’s house, holding the cake plate on my lap!). One of our ‘family sayings,’ is “Yield to building happy memories.” Taking care in choosing what we wear, making special efforts with food, tables, flowers, being thoughtful in how we live . . . it’s what makes life special and gives us happy memories to look back on.

    PaulaDecember 7th, 2022  1:53 AM

  • Ok, I love this so much! Chic!

    Kate B.December 7th, 2022  9:16 AM


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