Step inside the VIP suite, doll, and join us as we catch up with Ann Caruso, the gorgeous stylist to the stars who has glammed up everyone from Claire Danes, Naomi Watts, and January Jones to Aerin Lauder, Oprah Winfrey, and Ivanka Trump. Between styling George Clooney’s family for his Venice nuptials, being named Womenswear Stylist of the Year by The Daily and her full plate of runway shows, red carpets, and editorial work for magazines like Town & Country and Harper’s Bazaar, Ann’s a busy bee. We all know that all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy, so it’s good that our gal finds plenty of time to hit the party circuit herself, too. Let’s listen in as she reveals her best party style secrets:
Your signature style is an all-American, to-the-manor-born, casual elegance. In your view, what are the five party fashion staples that every gal should have in her closet?
The perfect black dress, a pair of sexy pumps, a pair of sexy sandals, the perfect evening clutch, and at least one great piece of jewelry—whether it’s a cuff, necklace or earrings!
Which five women do you think have the best party/red carpet style at the moment?
Amal Clooney, Charlize Theron, Lupita Nyong’o, Victoria Beckham, and Kendall Jenner.
What are your favorite summer party fashion trends?
Anything white eyelet or denim, straw bags, espadrilles, gladiator sandals, and the bohemian/Seventies trend.
Let’s play favorites. Let’s start with your favorite party makeup products.
I have been using Mavala’s Mavalia Concealer which is a miracle worker, along with—you will not believe—Maybelline Instant Age Rewind The Lifter Foundation, which is sold out everywhere. I usually use an eyeliner like Teddy from MAC and a white liner for the inside of my eyes, and a shadow called Starflash from MAC or one called Camp from bareMinerals, along with their facial powder and blush. Estee Lauder has the most amazing bronzer, Bronze Goddess. And lips from Rodial or Charlotte Tilbury.
A few of Ann’s favorite things
Party hair products?
I like to keep it natural with just a blow dry or ponytail or low messy bun. I don’t use very much product. When I do my own hair I use Moroccanoil.
Favorite party dress?
I like my dresses sleek and clean, midi-length. Very Fifties like Dolce and Gabanna. Or something with a flirty skirt.
Favorite party shoe?
I love them all! Something plain and simple, without anything around the ankle, elongates the leg. And a little activity at the foot, with straps and a heel, give you a different attitude.
Ann (second from left) at a party in Los Angeles with Allison Williams, Cristina Ehrlich and Mary Alice Stephenson
Favorite evening bag?
I love a clutch! I often have collections in my office that I love to admire from designers like Edie Parker, VBH, Emm Kuo, and Rafe. And, of course, I have my own extensive collection including some of my favorites from Chanel, Fendi, YSL, Judith Leiber, and Kotur.
Favorite party jewelry?
Costume and fine jewelry for black tie!
Ann Caruso styled Ivanka Trump for an InStyle magazine feature
What’s always in your evening clutch?
My iPhone, lip gloss, my Mavalia Concealer, a credit card, a little bit of cash and, if the bag is big enough, an eyelash curler.
Photos: Ann Caruso, Getty, Patrick McMullen