Anna Urbanova

Enticing characters abound in Amor Towles’s novel A Gentleman in Moscow, set in post-Revolutionary Russia. Among them is Moscow’s lively old Metropol Hotel, in which the story takes place. However, for the most alluring personality, we vote for Anna Urbanova, a willowy film star who has a habit, under certain circumstances, of dropping her clothing to the floor of her hotel suite. Blouses, dresses. Rather than being shocked, we wonder, instead, how we might look doing the same thing. And which of Jane’s Vanity’s seductive garments we might choose.

First of all, a blouse finds its way to the floor, “with a delicate whoosh.” Anna has invited the main character, Count Rostov, up for an intimate dinner. One thing leads to another. We imagine Klements’s Bamboo Jungle Mildred Blouse as a likely participant in this scenario.

After that, Anna and the Count do not see each other for years. But, eventually, they meet again at the hotel. A playful routine is established for when Anna is in town. The Count receives a note with a time and question mark. What will she be wearing, as she stands at her window and waits for his arrival? Vannina Vespirini’s Carla Silk Gown comes to mind, with its pale blue stretch silk and blush lace appliqué, Anna would look stunning in its scoop neckline, high slit, and fully functioning ribbon lacing at back (just in case). Or perhaps she would choose Marjolaine’s Imprimé Fleurs Silk Chemise with its floral print on black silk, lavishly appliquéd with corded black lace at bust. Covered buttons make it easy to “whoosh.” Gilda & Pearl’s Sophia Silk Slip Dress would provide a nice surprise with its utter simplicity and fuchsia splash of color.

Outside it may be pouring. But, inside, the solace of literature and of evocative garments from JV assure that life is never dull.

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