Magazine article The New Yorker

You're Wearing That?

Magazine article The New Yorker

You're Wearing That?

Article excerpt

A handful of men were in the crowd the other night at "Love, Loss, and What I Wore," the Off Broadway play by Nora and Delia Ephron that is based on Ilene Beckerman's best-selling memoir of her wardrobe. (Word was that Edward Norton was somewhere at the rear of the packed house.) But the majority of the audience was female, as has been the case since the play opened, and front and center was a group of twenty-five ladies, brought together by Michele Cohen, a homemaker and mother of four from the Upper East Side. "I was at the opening night, and I thought, I want to see this with my daughter," Cohen said in the lobby before the show. "I did an e-mail blast. I have a friend from fifth grade here. My decorator. Friends from my kids' kindergarten and nursery schools. Someone I do beading with." A woman in a handsome raincoat strode past and waved. "Another parent from Riverdale Country School," Cohen said.

There was a preponderance of cashmere (black, brown) and sober but chic wool pants (brown, black) among Cohen's group, whose members ranged in age from the mid-twenties to close to seventy, and who laughed and wept as the first-person frock stories unfurled onstage. (Biggest laugh: when Capathia Jenkins said, "If my elbows faced forward, I would kill myself." Biggest gasp: when Rhea Perlman, as Ilene Beckerman, showed a sketch of the black-and-red print taffeta maternity dress she'd worn for her six pregnancies, then said, "David died when he was eighteen months old from a forty-eight-hour intestinal virus.")

Afterward, the ladies gathered in the aisles and shared sartorial reminiscences of their own. "Ah, the skinny white pants I wore in the lobby of the Imperial Hotel in Japan," Mike Peissis, who had on a stylish taupe cardigan, sighed, as she recalled an outfit from 1983, the year of her marriage. Peissis had brought Carly Schwartzwald, her daughter's best friend, since her daughter had become ill at the last moment. "I'm only twenty-five, and my grandmother says, 'Why not always dress your best?' " Schwartzwald said. "So for Thanksgiving I wore a sparkly jacket, and I said, 'Grandma, I'm wearing it for you.' " At the theatre, Schwartzwald was wearing a new black cashmere cardigan that she had bought the day after Thanksgiving, apparently sparkled out. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.