STYLE: Does Indy stock what Vogue touts?

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In New York, the word September is synonymous with fashion. That’s not because fall is a more stylish season than
the other three, it’s because September is when Vogue debuts its guide to getting dressed for the next 12 months.

Click here to view the fashions mentioned in this story.

At 584 pages (skinny compared to past years), it’s the thickest edition of the year. And with
the publication of this national fashion authority commences fall fashion week,
when trends predicted (and sometimes dictated) by Vogue are paraded down
the catwalk so the public knows what it should wear tomorrow. Short skirts or long? Baggy pants or trim?
Double-breasted jackets or two-button?

This cashmere shell by Rodriquez is great with a pencil skirt at the office or with a trouser jean for a casual
look. (IBJ Photo/Robin Jerstad)

By comparison, September in Indianapolis means cooling temperatures and falling leaves. Local boutiques
did not observe Fashion’s Night Out on Sept. 10, a Vogue-promoted and supposedly international
shop-till-you-drop, forget-the-economy-is-terrible extravaganza. And “The September Issue,” a much-anticipated
documentary by R.J. Cutler about the making of said magazine, won’t open locally until Sept. 25, two weeks after it
premiered in the Big Apple. (The moral of the cinematic story is that people who work at Vogue work very hard and,
contrary to popular belief, fashion is a necessity.)

A Vogue subscriber since childhood, I can scarcely remember a month going by without ogling
the style spreads carefully orchestrated by Grace Coddington, creative director of two decades. I even
quoted the 2006 issue in my college honors thesis. But I’ve never tried reading the trends and immediately
shopping them.

This year’s guide made me wonder if that’s possible in Indianapolis. Are Indianapolis fashion
buyers just as hip to what Vogue says is cool—dramatic coats, ’40s-inspired attire and textured
suits—as anyone else?

I decided to go shopping and find out. Here’s what I found in both the pages of Vogue
and Indy boutiques:


• Blush tweed frock coat with metallic thread by Pink Polkadot, $152, at Niche (916 Broad
Ripple Ave.) The store has only been open two weeks and I’m already impressed with its modern décor,
sprinkled with nods to days past, e.g., carved wood organ-turned-cash register credenza.

• Taupe cowl-neck coat in tropical wool by Gary Graham, $900, at 8 Fifteen (6544 Ferguson St.).

• Boucle coat in camel with bracelet-length sleeves and faux collar by Milly, $640, at Nordstrom
at Keystone. Perfect to wear with this season’s accessory trend, gloves, this fall jacket is very Jackie O.

• Wool coat in moss green with oversized collar and pewter buttons by Rodriguez, $759, at Frankey’s (1300 E.
86th St.)


• Short-sleeved wool plaid jacket in shades of brown with bias-cut asymmetrical peplum
and leopard print belt, $498, “Collette” jacket by Nanette Lepore at Saks Fifth Avenue. Paired
with a pencil skirt and black camisole, it’s a modern take on Ingrid Bergman in “Casablanca.”

• Navy dress in jersey knit with sharp shoulders and curvy seams at the hip, $1,175 by Temperley
at Nordstrom at Keystone.

• Ruffled-front ecru pullover with short dolman sleeves by Rodriguez, $297, at Frankey’s.

Textured suiting

• Black wool blazer with removable rabbit lining by Elizabeth and James, $795, at 8 Fifteen.

• Brown & black tweed jacket with black organza overlay by Dolce & Gabbana, $685, at Nordstrom
at Keystone.

It took only a single shopping day to find these gems, a pleasant surprise. Things I thought would take
a little hunting, like ’40s-inspired items, were in some cases displayed on a mannequin rather
than the rack.

That’s not to say the places I’ve mentioned are the only shops doing such a stellar job keeping
up with the trends. After all, the Indianapolis shopping scene has way more to offer than can be seen
in one day, thank goodness.•


If you’d like to share your own style ideas or know anyone who’s making waves in the
fashion community, contact Gabrielle at This column appears monthly.

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