La Sprezzatura

Sprezzatura is a lovely Italian word that conveys the idea of studied nonchalance. What may appear a happy accident, produced effortlessly, is actually the result of careful engineering. Although Castiglione coined the term sprezzatura in 16th century Italy for The Book of the Courtier,* it suits the art of modern lingerie, as well. Especially as practiced by Jane’s Vanity. And by ourselves, when we wish to face the world with finesse, no matter what.

A look in the morning mirror might reveal a flaw or even what we see as an ugly scar. Sometimes, it is worse than that. We may need both physical and psychological armour. It is then that the sprezzatura of fine lingerie comes to the rescue. It shields, glamorizes, and even heals. 

Whatever the issue, a beautiful silk slip helps create the image we desire. Falling from the bosom, it skims the body to smooth any little problems.  Vaninna Versperini provides an example with the Intemporel Outremer Slip in teal stretch silk accented by vibrant purple lace at neckline and hem. Or, for something in black, Lise Charmel’s Sexy Rebelle Silk Chemise begins with a floral lace bralette and adds a body of silk georgette that floats down to a lace-trimmed upper thigh. 

In fashion, the term “illusion” describes a silhouette of lace or tulle that suggests rather than reveals. Cadolle’s long-sleeve Coeur Bodysuit in black does a little bit of both. From bust to wrist, sheer mesh and heart-motif lace provide cover (and a keyhole at front neckline). Sleek microfiber embraces the remaining torso, with lace accents at legs. This bodysuit disappears under the slimmest clothes, but brings a sense of protection and luxe.

The Italian word grazia means grace. In any language, a matching chemise and robe can create a cloak of flowing movement. Morpho + Luna offer such a combo with the Paris Floral Print Chemise and Alix Floral Silk Robe of blue and black flowers on ivory silk. Heavy black lace accents the bodice of the chemise.

With a careless shrug, and flattering garments from Jane’s Vanity, we can carry off a casual sense of “things exquisite and well done.”

*All is explained in La Bella Lingua: My Love Affair with Italian, the World’s Most Enchanting Language by Dianne Hales.  

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