A unique opportunity was presented to me this summer that I couldn’t turn down. Chicago’s beautiful and historical hotel The Blackstone invited me to be a part of the hotel’s Gilded Age-inspired portrait shoot for Chicago’s 2018 Project Windows competition. Project Windows celebrates the art of visual merchandising. This year’s competition revolved around The Art Institute’s new exhibition featuring John Singer Sargent, who was considered the leading portrait painter of his generation. I was asked to arrive in my personal interpretation of gilded era fashion, for my shoot with a renowned portrait artist and photographer, Ann Latinovich.
So one hot and steamy Sunday afternoon a few weeks back, it was operation Gilded glam makeover. I had a vision of wearing all black, a classic red lip, and a sleek simple hairstyle. After tearing up my closet, I finally choose a black lace dress by one of my long time favorite designers, For Love and Lemons. A modest heel (love these and the price tag), a black fascinator, and my favorite red lip stain by Stila in shade Beso. I was looking forward to the experience, but couldn’t help but feel a bit nervous since I really didn’t know what to expect. So what did I do to make myself feel better? Obviously begged my Instagram Husband to come along for the fun! Dude begrudgingly said yes, and off we went. A gal dressed to impress, and a fellow in a Guns N’ Roses tee (note Madeworn is his favorite rock n roll t-shirt source).
I was in instant awe of the Blackstone hotel as soon as we arrived…it is absolutely gorgeous! Sophisticated, stylish, and oh so classy. The rich historical vibes made me feel like I was in Paris. We met the artist Ann in the beautiful Crystal Ballroom. Ann was wonderful to work with, so encouraging and made me feel so comfortable. My Instagram husband was proudly taking videos of the shoot, complete with commentary in his famous Beavis and Butthead voices. Ann thought he was a hoot…and shocked me by asking him to jump in a couple shots. And then…Dude shocked me even more by happily jumping in!
Thank you to Ann and The Blackstone for an extra special Sunday afternoon. I can’t wait to visit again!
All photos by Annlatinovich.com
“A girl should be two things: classy and fabulous.”~ Coco Chanel