Holiday Gift Guide Part 5 — For The Grace Jones-Loving, Warm Leatherette-Wearing Woman
Almost three decades before Lady Gaga bewitched audiences with her outlandish costumes, New Wave/dance singer Grace Jones set the bar for lovable eccentricity, donning embellished face masks and sculptural, gravity-defying hats and headpieces; bucking traditional gender norms by rocking a masculine, cropped, flat top ‘do, along with blazers with squared shoulders; toying with dominatrix motifs through leather bustiers, fishnet tights, come-hitter platform heels, and figure-hugging leotards; wearing wire armor ensembles; and generally advancing the avant-garde agenda.
For the latest installment of our holiday gift guide, then, we are celebrating women with a similarly intrepid spirit and a fearless approach to fashion and beauty. Know someone who is a “slave to the rhythm”? Then read on!
ANGEL by Thierry Mugler Couture Star Collector Eau de Parfum, $115. Available at Neiman Marcus, NeimanMarcus.com and other Thierry Mugler Parfums retailers.
The star-shaped bottle of Thierry Mugler’s iconic ANGEL eau de parfum has always seemed fitting for such a showstopping fragrance — after all, this scent pioneered the oriental gourmand category with its clever combination of sweet notes like honey, chocolate, and caramel and earthy notes like patchouli and coumarin. Now, this bottle is enjoying even better VIP treatment thanks to its role as the leading act of the Mugler Show. The faceted blue glass star points have now been outfitted with a bustier-style leather casing, so that only the top ridges of the bottle are revealed, as if they were the naked shoulders of a scene-stealing diva. The top ridge of the leather, meanwhile, is adorned with 28 Crystallized Swarovski Elements stones in a jet black hue for added star power. As if the ground-breaking nature of the aroma weren’t enough, the limited-edition Angel Star Collector EDP bottle’s edgy leather makeover, would leave any Grace Jones devotee star-struck.
Julia Clancey Grace Slinky Dress, $450. Available at Farfetch.com
In February 2009, when Jones strutted down the runway for the Africa Fashion Collective runway show, she donned a low-cut, cleavage-revealing, hooded mini dress. Though that number was designed by Xuly Bet, its overall vibe was similar to that of this sleek number by Julia Clancey. With voluminous, tiered puff sleeves and an exaggerated cowl neck, this 100% polyester dress says out-of-this-world cool.
Nous Sommes Grace Jones Pendant, 170 EUR. Available at NousSommes.fr
What better way to pay homage to the legendary Ms. Jones than to wear a pendant made in her image around her neck? Dangling from a ball chain necklace, this sculpted, slightly tarnished-looking silver pendant captures the the most iconic aspects of Jones’ look: the elongated face, strong brows, almond-shaped eyes, high cheekbones, and cropped cut.
Case-Mate iPhone 4 Barely There Wrap Case in Purple Reptile, $39.99. Available at Case-Mate.com
As an adventurous, risk-taking performer, Jones has typically gravitated toward more outlandish fare so, when selecting an iPhone case, she would probably opt for an exotic number like this Case-Mate Barely There Wrap Case, which features a metallic purple, snakeskin-like pattern.
Tarte Cosmetics The Royal Collection Limited-Edition Holiday Palette, $43. Available at TarteCosmetics.com
To pull off a dramatic look, like the one Jones donned on the cover of her Portfolio album, you can count on the twelve shades featured in Tarte’s The Royal Collection — particularly the twilight blue and blackened forest green in the palette’s last row , the shimmering burgundy shade in the first row, and the muddy brown with copper and golden glimmer in the third row. These paraben- and preservative-free, vegan-friendly shadows are gentle on the eyes, but deliver quite a dose of pigment. A pull-out drawer, meanwhile, reveals a 0.37 fl. oz. bottle of Tarte’s Clean Slate primer, a miniature tube of multiplEYE lash enhancing primer, a portable tube of the Lights, Camera, Lashes mascara, and a punchy pink gloss.
Alexander McQueen Fold Shoulder Detail Blazer, $1744. Available at FarFetch.com
When Jones’ Nightclubbing album hit stores, fans were buzzing about the androgynous look she sported on its cover, where she was shown wearing a black blazer with prominent, square shoulders, a cigarette dangling from the corner of her mouth. Blurring the line between masculine and feminine quickly became part of Jones’ charm, not to mention an indication of her fearlessness when it came to trumping social taboos. This collarless, black fleece wool blazer from Alexander McQueen features a plunging V-neck, so you can show just a hint of cleavage, as well as shoulder pads for that Jones-like, ’80s feel.
Stephen Jones Millinery Triple Vision Hat, price available upon request. Visit StepenJonesMillinery.com for stockists and price quotes.
As one of hat designer Philip Treacy’s muses, Grace Jones has often donned his avant-garde hats and headpieces — from sweeping, feathered headdresses in chevron-like patterns to fedoras with explosions of plumes spouting from their crowns and curved headpieces resembling the crest of a Trojan helmet. Like Treacy, Cheshire-born milliner Stephen Jones approaches hat making with an emphasis on artistry over functionality. This dramatic, whimsically radical piece by Stephen Jones consists of an exaggerated top hat with a wide, asymmetrical brim, constructed of a mesh-like, see-through material that allows the onlooker to make out two smaller hat silhouettes within the crown (hence the triple vision reference).
Brian Lichtenberg Glitter Hooded Dress, $575. Available at Singer22.com
Anyone who considers Grace Jones a style inspiration will gravitate towards slinky, long-sleeved dresses with hoods for an urban warrior-meets-couture vibe. This Brian Lichtenberg number hits all the right notes, plus its glittery finish adds the right radiance for a Jones-inspired, fashion star in the making.
Lord & Taylor Wrist-Length Silk Lined Leather Gloves, $39.99. Available at LordAndTaylor.com
One of my favorite images of Grace Jones shows her looking to the side naughtily, her teeth exposed, biting on her pinkie finger while wearing a purple leather glove with silver-toned grommets. This pair of short gloves can help you recreate that classic pose.
O.P.I “The Color To Watch” Nail Lacquer, $8.50. Available at select drugstores and beauty supply stores. Visit BrightonBeautySupply.com
Grace Jones has always appreciated the color purple, exploring the spectrum of shades in her fashion and makeup choices. With its enigmatic, iridescent purple color, O.P.I’s new The Color To Watch nail lacquer would make Jones’ nails a view to a kill. Click here to check out what the shade looks like on nails!
Mixology NYC Sid & Nancy’s Stardust Fringe Choker, $325. Available at Shop.MixologyNYC.com
This choker necklace features cascading gunmetal-colored leather fringe strands covered in silver glitter for a space-goddess-meets-dominatrix effect that’s even more seductive than Jones’ look on the “Pull Up To The Bumper” single cover. This necklace may not be for the faint of heart but, then, if there’s something Grace Jones has taught us over the years it’s that being shy with style is just no fun.
The Highest Heel Gladiator Open Toe Platform, $89.99. Available at Endless.com
Way before Gaga rocked the late Alexander McQueen’s now infamous lobster claw shoes in her “Bad Romance” video, Grace Jones was dominating stages in corsets, leotards, fishnet stockings, and sky-high platform heels. These audacious sandals from the Highest Heel would feel right at home in Jones’ closet, as they feature a spiked 5 1/2″ heel, a 1 3/4″ platform, a peep toe, a buckled ankle strap, triangular cut-out details along the sides, and knotted motifs along the center.
She may have been packing heat as May Day in A View To A Kill but, off screen, Jones’ weaponry of choice would likely be this Juliette Has A Gun Purse Bullet. Nina Ricci’s grandson, perfumer Romano Ricci, developed the Juliette Has A Gun Lady Vengeance scent, combining romantic Bulgarian rose with creamy vanilla and earthy patchouli for a scent that’s both sensuous and elegant. The purse bullet allows you to carry the Lady Vengeance scent with you; when you remove the cap, you’ll notice a rollerball applicator and, if you remove the bottom disc, you can insert one of the three oil refill-charges in the set. Now that’s an aromatic arsenal we can get behind!
Bubbles And Frown Purple Tapestry and Peacock Feathers Mask, $33.33. Available at BubblesAndFrown.Etsy.com
Though everyone oohed and aahed over Lady Gaga’s mirror mask in the “Poker Face” video, she was hardly the first artist to integrate a masquerade element into her performance art. Grace Jones was known for her outlandish masks ‚ including a feline-themed, whiskered piece she rocked to her birthday party back in 1985. The above-pictured mask, then, would add the right amount of mystery to a stage-ready ensemble, with its shredded purple and gold tapestry fabric, the beaded black trim along its periphery, and the elongated peacock feathers defying gravity at the top of the mask.
Sonia Rykiel Sequined Blazer, $454. Available at ShopStyle.com
With its color-blocked sequined panels in orange, brown, navy, and copper colors, and its elongated black velvet lapels, this Sonia Rykiel tuxedo blazer would look phenomenal over a black jumpsuit, a black bustier top and black pants combination, or any other Catwoman-esque ensemble.
NP Set Smoke Signals Eye Palette, $9.99. Available at Target.com
This affordable eye shadow palette features 12 mysterious, glistening shades — from a blackened plum to a Milky Way-worthy white with iridescent, silvery glitter, an oxidized silver shade, a forest green with brown and emerald green micro particles, and more. Aside from delivering great color, these shadows are enriched with vitamins A, C, and E to soothe the skin on the lids.
Ellis Faas Winter Glow Kit, $90. Available at EllisFaas.com
What would the holidays be without a festive red pout? Thanks to Ellis Faas, you’ll never have to find out. The Winter Glow kit features three best-selling products to deliver a sophisticated, glossy look: the Creamy Lips Ellis Red L101 lip color (which helps you achieve a blotted, stain-like pout in a blood-red shade, as seen here), the Ellis Eyes Light E305, and the Black Mascara E401 (among our top mascara picks for a fuller lash line and an overall smokier effect).
Mackage Opal Fingerless Leather Gloves, $88.20. Available at Shopbop.com
Leather gloves have always been integral to Jones’ repertoire. Modernize the look with these fingerless Mackage gloves, which feature two rows of back pyramid studs all along the wrist.
L’Objet Leopard-Designed Candleholder and Scented Candle, $95. Available at NeimanMarcus.com
Animal prints were essential to Grace Jones’ wardrobe (after all, what Queen of Fierce doesn’t appreciate the beauty of an untamed, lithe, feline animal?). It follows, then, that she would be fond of similarly primitive but posh motifs in her home decor choices. This black-and-gold, leopard-print, cylindrical candle jar, which features a lid adorned with a graceful gold leopard handle, would fit the mood, as would the indulgent pink champagne aroma of the candle within it.