By Michael M. Clements By Michael M. Clements | March 12, 2019 | People Style & Beauty
For Michael Dumlao and Sara Azani, wardrobes are more than outfits—they’re a lifestyle.
Fashion influencer Sara Azani recommends “Gucci tights and a red vintage Chanel crossbody bag” as spring 2019 must-haves and lists items from Céline, The Row, Chanel, Rebecca Taylor, Anine Bing, Isabel Marant and Little Joe Woman as wardrobe favorites.
As the editor and CEO of Style MBA—a lifestyle blog about the business of fashion, beauty, decor and travel—Sara Azani scours the globe for rare finds, from mainstream fashion brands and small boutiques alike, in order to make fashion aspirational and attainable for her readers. She calls her personal aesthetic “classic mixed with a little rock ‘n’ roll” and has partnered with the likes of Chanel, Jo Malone London and Nordstrom. “I tend to focus on investment pieces and build a wardrobe around them. I look for high-quality tailoring.” Azani’s favorite wardrobe items are her shoes, handbag collection and husband’s Moncler jacket. She displays her shoe collection in her office to draw inspiration for her blog. “I just did the Kondo method,” she confesses, “so that was a big-time commitment. I do constant weekly edits of the new clothing samples I receive from brands.” Azani’s dream wardrobe would be borrowed from either Sarah Jessica Parker or Olivia Palermo. “Chanel vintage would work, too,” she says. Her can’t-live-without items? “Brick-colored Bare sandals from The Row and Céline sunglasses to hide my lack of sleep from twin parenting.”
Dumlao currently has an eye on designers “Lavie by CK, the Cameroon-born designer who evokes African grandeur and was recently worn by Janet Jackson; Keith Haring-inspired Tyler Wallach Studio in New York City; witty Washington-based fan designers Clack That Fan; and the architects of fashion, Dutch duo Viktor & Rolf.”
“Live your life so every moment is a special occasion,” says artist, performer and brand director Michael Dumlao. Lucky for Dumlao, his wardrobe can accommodate any occasion one can dream up. Headdresses, beaded gowns, silk scarves, vintage Victorian jewelry, kimonos and an assortment of leather, rubber and neoprene accouterment—“perfect for any leather brunch event,” he says—are all part of his ensemble. He organizes it all by season. This means “the seasons,” he jokes, “the Oscars, Comic-Con, Burning Man, Pride, Halloween and Drag Race finales.” Lately, he’s into tartan, specifically check and plaid patterned pants, wraps, coats, jackets, shirts and scarves that he mixes and matches. “My style has evolved through an appreciation for unfettered creative expression, cultural curiosity and a belief that binaries are meant to be broken,” says Dumlao, who for spring can’t live without his Pau Charly wide-brimmed explorer hat that he bought at the base of Chichen Itza, or the yellow Moschino Couture shirt with built-in orange flannel harness he found at Wasteland on Melrose Avenue. “I don’t wear clothes. I wear stories. I wear ideas. I wear life,” he says. Carpe diem!
Photography by: PHOTOGRAPHY BY VIOLETTA MARKELOU