So I met the fabulous Alice Kim four years ago in Omaha, Nebraska, where she’d just moved from New York City, giving up her glamorous fashionista editor-at-InStyle-Magazine-with-a-loft-in-Tribeca lifestyle for… a new, Midwestern version of a glamorous fashionista life, complete with princess mansion, country club membership and Soup Sundays. Alice had dreamed of a Midwest existence, and Omaha in particular, and then one day up and made the move despite not knowing anyone at all in Omaha and despite the horror of her New-York-centric peers. She ended up opening a most alluring shop in downtown Omaha (which is incredibly quaint and funky) called Trocadero, an airy brick-walled shop filled with wonders (like a mermaidly charm necklace now owned by yours truly), and carving out her own dream Midwestern life. Now Alice is about to tie the knot with a dashing suitor, and is a brand-new mama to a magical baby named Annabel. Who doesn’t love a girl who dreams up a life and then goes out and gets it?
And given Alice’s fashion expertise, I figured she could help out some aspiring mermaids make their own magical transformations.
Our fashionable Q and A follows.
Alice, you were the Accessories Editor at InStyle and now you own an accessories and lifestyle emporium in downtown Omaha. Have you come across any extremely fabulous mermaid-style accessories in the past years?
Funny that you mention that because I was shopping for cufflinks for my fiancé at Christmas time and I came across these Robert Graham mermaid cufflinks on cufflinks.com.
How should a modern mermaid accessorize (shoes, hair, jewelry, makeup, etc)?
The last modern mermaid that comes to my mind is Daryl Hannah in Splash and that was in the 80s! But as you know, fashion is cyclical and since that was 27 years ago, we can kind of use that as a guide and Daryl as a “muse” of sorts. Long, cascading hair with soft curls is key, makeup should be soft: a little mascara to define the eyes, a peachy blush to give just a little glow, and a coral-natural lip. Jewelry should also be kept to a minimum minus a bracelet or bangle and perhaps a really fabulous cocktail ring. In terms of shoes, do we ever really get to see a mermaid’s feet? I saw this photo of Amy Adams at the Bafta Awards this year and for some reason, her look in total just screamed “Modern Mermaid” to me: everything from her hair to her dress just looked like what a fashionable mermaid would wear to a red carpet ceremony. See, no peek at her feet. Remember, she has to hide her tail…right?
What is your feeling about glitter – and do you have any recommendations for the kinds of glitter that might suit a mermaid best?
I love a little shimmer! Whether it’s a lurex thread in a beautiful cashmere sweater or a light dusting of gold shimmer on the decolletage, a mermaid should not fear a little glitter. Tarina Tarantino makes a great product called “Sparklicity Pure Gold” and it’s a great gold powder that you can use all over your body. At Trocadero, we carry Scarlett Cosmetics’ “Glamo-Glitz” mineral eye shadows with shimmer in a wide array of colors. A greenish-blue called “Medusa” or “Aurora” which is a silvery lavender would both be nice for this upcoming spring season.
Can you show us some examples of some especially alluring mermaid products you carry at Trocadero?
We have some wonderful metallic and sequin accessories from MZ Wallace, a NYC-based accessories company that I love. We also introduced a capsule vintage collection at the holidays which includes a wonderfully mermaid-esque necklace from Dior with stars and gray faux pearls. You can check out our Facebook fan page to see what we have in store!
Are you fan of the mermaid skirt or any other mermaid-inspired clothing?
When I was younger I used to own a few “trumpet” skirts that were flared from the knee to mid-calf. I absolutely adored them! I remember purchasing one at this little amazing boutique outside of Harvard Square in Cambridge, MA. I wish I still owned it! Now that I have daughters (a new baby born in January and a soon-to-be step daughter, aged 9), I really do wish I saved some more of my clothing! The accessories are a done deal! They have those for sure!
Do you have any other fashion advice for aspiring mermaids?
It’s all in the art of subtlety. You never want to scream “I’m a Mermaid, Damn It!” with whatever you’re wearing. Keep some mystery, add some shimmer and don’t forget it’s all about glamour and confidence with comfort mixed in of course!