by Lester Brathwaite on
All right everyone I hope you brought your cowl-neck sweaters, your drop-waist blouses, a culotte, a slouchy boot and a bad attitude. This week’s class will be on the grand dame of grandmothers, Dorothy Petrillo Zbornak Hollingsworth.
Key Pieces: In addition to the previous items, we’re talking sequins, a string of pearls down to the ground, more sequins, Chanel doorknockers, and the occasional kitten heel.
Designers to Wear: Donna Karan, Chanel, Marc Jacobs, Alexander McQueen
Defining Fashion Moment: Where do I begin? I’m facing Sophie’s Choice right now, torn between two scenes. The first is from Season 7, Episode 19, “Journey to the Center of Attention.”
In a bar full of middle-aged horndogs itching to climb up Blanche’s dress (she’s not wearing any underwear…meanwhile, imagine your grandma saying that to a anyone and not being able to blame it on the Alzheimer’s) when Dorothy steals the spotlight by singing a heartfelt rendition of Irving Berlin‘s “What’ll I Do.”
All the while, she’s wearing a black blazer with gold piping and epaulets, black pants tucked into a slouchy black boot and only one major accessory — her gold Chanel doorknockers.
Perfection. Simple, chic, but still playing on that fun masculine edge. Signature Dorothy.
The second is from The Golden Girls series finale; Season 7, Episode 26, “One Flew Out of the Cuckoo’s Nest, Part 2.” Dorothy marries Blanche’s cousin, Lucas — played by Leslie Nielsen (say howyoudoin’ to Bea for me!) – after a whirlwind trip of mutual hatred, deceit and finally love that only a sitcom and a Shakespearean play can deftly pull off.
I mean, look at this dress:
Kate Middleton, take note. This is how you turn it out at your wedding.