The most nerve-racking part of any event is figuring out what to wear. Dress codes like “cocktail chic,” “casual country,” or “relaxed beach swag” are almost incomprehensible. And while we can never figure out if it’s better to be overdressed or underdressed, we’ve found two people who get it right every time. Claire Slover and Rodrigo Reyes are Charleston’s Biggest Party Animals when it comes to style in the Lowcountry.
PARTY SCHOOLED. Reyes is from Arizona, where the style is more casual, but also where he got his start in some of his more daring looks. “Arizona State is a big party school,” he told us, and as a design major, he was always putting his creativity to use on costumes for the themed throwdowns. Now, in Charleston, he can be found dressed as the Tin Man in a toga for the Red Party or running around Skinful in little more than his skivvies and a sombrero. His advice for dress code success is to “plan ahead and be as different as possible.”
OWN IT. When asked about his favorite party outfit, we expected an outlandish guise, but it was a three-piece ensemble he wore last year during Charleston Fashion Week. Purple Topshop pants, a sheer Rick Owens top, and a denim blazer carried Reyes through King Street that evening, feeling debonair and posing for pictures along the way. He brings up the photographs on Instagram — he looked spectacular. He tells us that confidence is really what makes great style. He “owned it” that evening and it showed.
WHO’S THAT LADY? We’re always excited to see what Slover will wear to a party. She has shown up as Lady Gaga, Carmen Miranda, the Queen of Hearts, and everything in between. The best part? Many times she constructs the costumes herself. Slover describes herself as a “free-spirited dresser” without limits; however, she demurred she was approaching a period where she had to be aware of what was age-appropriate. We say, “if you’ve got it, flaunt it,” and we think she does.
SOCIAL, BUT NOT SOCIAL MEDIA. Slover says she frequently picks up fashion magazines, but doesn’t subscribe to looking at blogs or Pinterest for fashion ideas. “I have so many crazy thoughts about style flowing through my head on a daily basis — I think my head would explode if I added to my already existing madness,” says. Slover jokes that everyone should be ecstatic that clothing is her creative outlet, because “no one wants [her] to sing or paint.”
EENY, MEENY, MINEY, MOE. Asked if she has a favorite party outfit, Slover says that she loves them all. Of course, she’s had a “fashion mishap or two … or 50,” but that’s the fun part: “Looking back at old hilarious pics of yourself and learning from [them].” Obviously, the girl who owns purple fringe boots and a sheer red dress doesn’t take fashion too seriously, but she encourages everyone to “let it be fun and always take risks.” Everyone should have a little style bravado within. —Erin Perkins