Tinsley Mortimer: designer, author, television personality In a city full of vampiric in black, Tinsley Mortimer continues to light up the scene in an array of candy-colored hues. She’s so much the embodiment of a modern-day Eloise that it’s hard to wander into the Plaza without expecting to see the Southern-born belle in her trademark ringlets and ruffled gowns. They pair well with the Samantha Thavasa handbags she designs.
Anna Cleveland, model. Sure, she looks a bit like her mother, Pat Cleveland, but her look harkens back to an earlier, wildly dramatic era. As Anna Cleveland swirls and struts in floor-length ball gowns (alongside Zac Posen), you can’t help but feel that she just stepped out of a silent movie.
Olivia Palermo: reality TV star Who else can pull off plaid at the Victoria’s Secret Fashion show? The doe-eyed reality star’s genius lies in her ability to make everyone feel that their wardrobe could be red carpet-worthy with a few tweaks. Maybe all anyone needs to do is add the oversize sunglasses Olivia Palermo favors.
Fe Fendi: wife of Alessandro Fendi To see Fe Fendi is to feel transported back to 1960. The socialite, who was brought up in Madrid, adds more than just a touch—probably an entire fistful—of Old World glamour to every step-and-repeat. It helps to be a part of the iconic Fendi fashion house, but it also helps to have the sultry style of a young Ava Gardner.
Julia Restoin Roitfeld: art director She got it from her mama. The longtime French Vogue editor’s daughter carries on her mother’s reputation for erotic chic, especially when donning the lingerie she designed for Kiki de Montparnasse.
Jill Kargman: journalist/author Does anybody remember laughter? The author of The Ex Mrs. Hedgefund does. Anyone who isn’t afraid to poke fun at some of the foibles of the Park Avenue set certainly isn’t afraid to wear an actual leather punk outfit to the Met Ball. Thank God someone did.
Hannah Bronfman: deejay We can’t imagine how much work it must take to pull off a crop top or leopard print, but Hannah Bronfman makes it look easy. But then, she makes just about everything look easy. Whether she’s on a gala circuit or spinning, her look is always relaxed and simply cool.
Hailey Gates: Head of Advertising and Promotions for The Paris Review In knee socks, braids, and elegant capes, Ms. Gates looks like she ought to be the lead in a fairy tale—a really, really impossibly chic fairy tale. Thank goodness someone is on the scene to remind us that Manhattan is a kind of Wonderland.
Lizzie Tisch: co-founder of Suite 1521 Kate Middleton wishes she dressed as classically as Lizzie Tisch. Even at her most edgy, she looks ladylike. With her simple shifts and classic pumps, the word she most brings to mind is “impeccable.”
Cat Marnell: journalist A year ago, no one would ever have thought that smearing lipstick across your face would be a fashion statement. Then Cat Marnell showed up, her hair mussed, her lipstick everywhere and a ball gown under her fur, and millennials got their own Courtney Love.
They’re not your mother’s socialites. You won’t find these women taking long lunches. They’re all accomplished, they’re successful, and, for lack of a better word, they work. But they still know how to work an outfit.