Fashion Transformers

Pharrell Williams
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Does it seem like the world is in a constant state of transfiguration lately? It staggers the mind to think that Bill Nye is NOT the Science Guy (he’s a mechanical engineer) while Grammy Award Winner Pharrell Williams IS the new face of Chanel’s Gabrielle handbag and the first man featured in this advertising. Shall we call it the “murse?”

Conversion is happening on all fronts: gender, religion, geopolitics, and in the court of public opinion, so why shouldn’t fashion join in? Here are a few wearable items that pull double duty, metamorphosing right before your very eyes. And while I’m not claiming they’ll change water into wine, some have the power to lift you to new heights (don’t worry they’ll let you down gently) while others are known to have a few tricks hidden up their sleeves.

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Beginning with our best foot forward, I’m fascinated with this shoe within a shoe: the ballet flat is given a boost by a separate 3″ platform. The Gucci website describes them thusly: “Inspired by the shoes worn by Venetian courtesans, these multifunctional shoes were introduced for Spring/Summer 2017. The platform in patterns are a defining feature from the runway. Heavily influenced by cultural prints, Alessandro Michele uses this floral jacquard across the collection. The snake – one of Gucci’s most important new animal motifs-is embroidered from crystal beads and contrasts the plush velvet base. This style can be worn as a platform shoe or the platform can be removed and the slipper can be worn alone.” They are available for $1,190 in yellow floral jacquard with a dusty pink slipper, red floral jacquard with a red slipper or black patent with a gold slipper. Wear them with your royal athleisure wear and start your own renaissance revival.

Foldable loafer
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Also from Gucci and just a bit more down to earth are the Brixton foldable loafers available in hot pink, yellow and black for $630 at Saks. What’s so special about these updated horsebit detailed beauties is that they are made of the softest leather allowing them to be worn the traditional way or folded down as a slide.

Convertible Drawstring Coverup
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Camilla is an Australian designer that I am a huge fan of — I own one of her colorful jackets with a detachable scarf. This dress ($600) can be worn as a beach cover up or for an evening out — it has the added surprise of being a convertible mullet if you want to show off those summer-sun kissed legs.

All-in-One Convertible Gown
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Norma Kamali is basically the pioneer for anything convertible without wheels. Her All-in-One Convertible solid gowns and jumpsuits have become classics. Why not go a step further with a striped black and ivory version? It can be worn strapless, as a halter neck, a round neck, in a one-shoulder style, even as a sarong skirt. Next time you’re out on the town try changing your look up each time you return from the rest room just to see who’s paying attention.

Tweed Convertible jacket
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Here’s a case where “sometimes you feel like a nut, sometimes you don’t”. In this Proenza Schouler nubby tweed convertible jacket you can wear it asymmetrically with flags (panels) flying for the art gallery opening or tie the flaps in the back and you have a blazer suitable for the board meeting.

1-2-3 Asymmetric Convertible Coat
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This DVF coat reminds me of a trench coat that I just had to have when I was a teen. Mine was powder blue and zipped off to Mini, Midi, and Maxi lengths (remember those days?). This one is navy and will transition from bolero, to hip length or left long (3/4 length).

Convertible leather-trimmed coat
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The Belstaff Convertible Leather-Trimmed trench is perfect for springtime. When the sleeves are removed it becomes a super cool mesh-fisherman-inspired chic cinched in vest.

Trench convertible coat
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If you think a trench that only converts to a vest is slacking on the job, then check out this Martin Margiela coat– it morphs into a jumper dress. It’s completely on trend with the interesting Japanese style which is certain to be in-demand due to a certain little exhibition (with the initials CDG), opens at The Met next week.

Convertible wedding dress
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Wedding season is right around the corner and the bridal fashion shows just wrapped — here’s something unique for the fashion conscious bride. This Stella York gown is both shocking and practical — perfect for a bit of a traditionalist who also likes to cut loose and have fun on her wedding day. She can walk down the aisle in a gorgeous floor length tulle gown but come the reception Voila! It’s an elegant lace mini dress complete with a practical hidden back zipper under those tiny little pearl buttons which no one wants to have to do (or undo) in order to say “I do.”

 Please note: No commercial involvement of any kind has been solicited or accepted in the development of the content for this article. The choice of content is purely up to the author of the article and he/she receives no compensation from any of the companies or advertising agencies that own, represent or promote said products or samples selected.

– Laurel Marcus

Laurel Marcus

OG journo major who thought Strunk & White's "The Elements of Style" was a fashion guide. Desktop comedienne -- the world of fashion gives me no shortage of material.

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