European Elegance

Juicy Lucy brings fashion from across the pond to Cleveland.
Other than just looking frumpy (always undesirable), a woman can go one of two ways as she leaves behind her trendy 20s. One route is all sizzle. Think colorful, silky camisoles with lots of sparkle. This route leads directly to “The Real Housewives of Orange County,” that spectacle of a show on Bravo that follows a pack of middle-age women as they strive to be as rich as possible while looking as hot as possible.

The other route is less colorful, more classy. Imagine a woman jaunting down the Champs-Elysées to meet her friend at a cafe. Her dark hair pulled back in a chignon, she wears layers of black and gray, the only color in her outfit being the scarf around her neck that’s tied just so. She looks impossibly, effortlessly chic.

If that’s your goal (and you’ve got a little money), then Juicy Lucy in Chagrin Falls is your store. I found a black crepe dress by Philosophy di Alberta Ferretti ($770) that draped over one shoulder and managed to look both incredibly modern and timeless. A slate-colored cashmere sweater by Kristensen du Nord ($549) was described by Juicy Lucy owner Cyndi Hawkes as so comfortable you’ll “want to sleep in it.” A pretty white-gold ring in the shape of a flower by Ileana Makri ($1,958) would add just the right touch of whimsy to any outfit.

Hawkes describes Juicy Lucy’s typical customer as “sophisticated, progressive and probably well-traveled.” Ruth Orkin’s famous photo “American Girl in Italy” even hangs on the wall. She’s the type who’d shop here, I think to myself.

But among all the blacks, grays and taupes, what’s to keep an American girl who wants to look European from ending up just looking drab?

First, says Hawkes, is the simplicity of color and cut. But that’s nothing without “fabulous craftsmanship.” That’s how you elevate an otherwise boring outfit to European elegance.

As for the scarf tied just so? Stop by the store. Hawkes says she’s happy to show you that trick, too.
Juicy Lucy, 31 W. Orange St., Chagrin Falls, (440) 247-5748
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