I have to tiptoe when I enter Elisa Nalin’s Paris apartment “because the baby just fell asleep”. Usually her son is the life of the party, but for what would turn out to be just a half hour, 18-month old Lucio is giving his parents a break. The rooms are quiet and drenched in Sunday afternoon light; I’m sipping tea while Elisa sorts through the vintage pieces she’s decided to show me. I’m surprised her clothing rack is not more overwhelming. Elisa is known to be a bit of a vintage fanatic. Then she explains that about two years ago she moved into her boyfriend’s apartment on Boulevard Magenta, but still held on to her own. “My old apartment has turned into an enormous, crazy closet. It looks like a favella! My nanny lives there now, surrounded by all my stuff. I go back now and then to pick up things I’ve been missing”.
Half way into her first outfit, Lucio wakes up from his nap. When he appears in the bedroom door on his mother’s arm, the resemblance is undeniable. Just like his mommy’s consistent, infectious giggle, Lucio’s smile is captivating, endearing and uncontrollable. I’ve never seen a kid more happy to be awake!
What I notice first about Elisa’s style is that she matches colors. Red shoes, red dress. Black and blue dress, black and blue shoes. When I point it out she ponders for a second and says “I like monochrome and color blocking with strong colors. But it depends on how I feel when I wake up. Dressing up has always been a game to me. I love to play with different styles. You have to have fun with it!” As the Fashion Director of Crash magazine and Contributing Editor to Lula, Japanese Harper’s Bazaar and French Glamour, she better not get up on the wrong side of the bed!
Until recently Elisa had a long, caramel, fringed hair cut but right after Paris fashion week she decided to bleach it and cut it super short. “When I had long hair I would wear more dresses. I find it harder to wear dresses with this short hair. Pants seems more appropriate.” Maybe she is still getting used to it, or maybe it was my subliminal influence, but the looks she put together for me were nothing but a series of fantastic dresses. Who needs pants!?