The Novel Approach

Writing romantic fiction might seem simple. But, like wearing fashion, it takes skill. We’ve found a novel that masters both. Prepare for a beach read that not only transports you to Paris, but also shows you how a dress can change your life. Jane’s Vanity has a way with dresses too.

A small collection of JV’s carefully-chosen dresses will give you confidence and poise. Because you know they await you, there in your closet. To make it easy to say yes to a sudden invitation, or to the prospect of packing light. One of them might even inspire a story such as The Paris Novel by Ruth Reichl (Random House, 2024). At the very beginning of the book, Stella, the shy heroine, is caught off guard by a beautiful dress in a Paris shop window. The vendeuse insists she try it on, in fact seems to have been expecting her. It is all a bit too much for Stella. She flees! But we hope she will return, and let this dress open her heart.

A dress can be a magical thing. The summery Greenfinch Midi Dress from Zoelle, for example, has you at hello with the sheen of its silky golden-green back-to-back prints. The design is quietly daring, with a boat neck that effortlessly ends in a deep V down your spine. Pleated detailing at the waist flatters your bosom. And the sweep of its skirt promises daytime markets in sandals, wedding parties in pearls, evening strolls in moonlight. 

Parisian Vannina Vesperini understands about dresses. And custom-crafted the Schiap Silk Dress just for Jane’s Vanity in stretch silk of either Burgundy and Rêve (a dream in ice-blue). Named for the brilliant designer Elsa Schiaparelli, who challenged Chanel with her avant garde style, these dresses are the essence of romance. Their retro style includes shoulder pads (removeable), plunging V-neck, a wide (and forgiving) shirred elasticized waist, hip flounces, sassy ¾ length sleeves. The accessorizing possibilities are also transformative: try it with a narrow gold belt and ankle-strap heels. Or go Parisian with a black leather jacket and patent leather cowboy boots.

Sometimes a dress whispers styling suggestions. Such is the case with Emma Ducci’s Santorini Silk Shirt Dress in a cooling Mediterranean vine print. Slip it on and listen carefully. Today it might like to be buttoned up with collar popped, or open to reveal a pretty camisole from Aromatique, or worn as a duster over the camisole and shorts. Strappy sandals? Toney flats?

And Stella? Before summer vacation is over, you will know if she and the dress were meant to be. And perhaps you’ll be wishing for a special dress of your own, selected for you by Jane’s Vanity, with love.  

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