Last week, Lena Dunham’s first book "Not That Kind of Girl" came out, which of course dictated many and most pop culture conversations. Since then, we’ve had some time to read, relax, and let opinions marinate, so that’s why we’re going to use it as an excuse to look at Lena Dunham’s various outfits and see what kind of fashion lessons we learned. (Get it? "A young woman tells you what she’s 'learned'"? It’s a play on words, you guys.)
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1. Do Not Fear Florals
We know you probably don’t, but just in case, here’s a reminder that florals work on every person and you can interpret them however you like. At a book stop in Boston, Dunham took the late seventies route, doing Mary Tyler Moore proud with a floor-length, long sleeve number. But you? You can go nineties with a short floral mini dress or channel the '60s with oversize daisies.
2. Take The Menswear Route
When in doubt, go the menswear-kind-of-forties look (as Dunham illustrated when she attended the Bergdorf Goodman and Michael Kors Celebration of Betty Halbreich's new memoir – complete with a tie). Lena Dunham-as-Diane Keaton (kind of) would never steer us aesthetically wrong.
3. Interpret Vintage Style Your Own Way
Everyone loves a vintage piece, but at this year's Venice Film Festival, Dunham interpreted the trend in her own way by opting for vintage patterns in monochromatic tones on modern cuts. See: the literal definition of "having it all."
4. Damn It, Take Risks
Not everyone was a fan of Lena Dunham’s Giambattista Valli dress at the 2014 Emmys, but do you know what? Who cares. The girl took a risk, she felt awesome (we can only assume), and she was at the freaking Emmys, shaking up the red carpet status quo. It may not have worked for everyone, but it worked for her—and that’s exactly what personal style is about. Risks for all!
5. Logo/Graphic Sweaters Are For Everyone
They are for everyone. You want to wear a t-shirt or sweatshirt or hoodie with words on them? You do it. Better yet, you wear one that, like the "No Comment" sweatshirt Lena wore in June, offers your opinion to the world and also goes with literally every piece of clothing you have. As for the story behind the sweatshirt? The 2014 edition is modeled after Tonya Harding’s from the early nineties, and for a week in April, you could score them off Etsy for $60.
6. Go Bold With Prints
Let’s keep this one short and sweet. At this year’s Bookexpo America event, Lena Dunham wore a dress that would make a retiree in Miami proud. We should all aim to make retirees in Miami proud. And we say this as someone who aspires to dress like Rose and/or Dorothy from the "Golden Girls" every single day. (Usually.)
7. Adopt Whatever Silhouette You Want
Lena Dunham is a woman of risk, and that’s probably the most obvious statement we've ever made. In the case of her dress at the 2014 Met Gala, she took said risk with a mullet dress that was kind of fitted at the waist, but still seemed roomy and comfortable. And rightfully so: the perfect silhouette is whatever you feel comfortable in, which is arguably why the "Girls" creator/star looks so comfortable in her appropriately spring number. (Florals, you guys. Remember what Miranda Priestly said.)
8. Never Rule Out Metallic
Never, ever rule out metallic. Stuck on what to wear? Choose metallic. Unsure of how to dress up an outfit? Metallic. Confused as to what type of floor-length disco gown to pick up (like Lena wore at the Point Honors New York gala)? Metallic. Always metallic. Why? Because anything you may have seen in "American Hustle" is usually a solid choice—even if it’s a two-piece velour tracksuit.
9. Eye On The Prize
Look. You can’t expect us not to make a pun when talking about somebody wearing a dress adorned with a massive eye. That being said, Dunham’s wearable art furthered her reputation as a woman whose affinity for bright colours and prints keep the red carpet interesting, especially since this specific style is fun, light, and the dress equivalent of a graphic t-shirt. Who says dressing up has to be boring or uncomfortable? (Nobody, just for the record.) But Lena’s flair for playfulness is proof that that’s exactly what formalwear should be.
10. Follow The Liz Lemon Code
It’s easy: when in doubt, just pair a blazer with jeans and work it like you’ve never worked anything before. After all, Liz’s lady-blazer really did carry us through seven glorious "30 Rock" seasons, and for good reason—it dressed up casual pants and/or footwear, while helping prove she meant business. Because if there’s anything we can learn about any character on television, if they’re wearing a blazer, they’re not messing around.