Oh, Eleanor. How many times must I tell you that shiny does not equal luxurious? This gray shirt with the attached scarf is just hideous, and unbelievably unflattering.
Shall we look at it again from another angle?
Case closed. I think this alone should be enough to turn Eleanor off shiny tight fabrics, but we all know she’ll be back again next week, wearing the same ugly blouses.
This is about a million times better. I mentioned earlier that Eric Daman did a wonderful job with red touches in this episode and this is one of those. Eleanor’s red plaid wrap is flattering and beautiful with her skin tone. I also love the fur hat perched rakishly on her head. She looks fabulous here—alive and much younger because of the bright color.
Even better—no shiny in sight!
Oh no. More shiny.
Shiny jackets are even worse than shiny shirts. I do like the shade of dark red, but the fabric itself is terrible. Can’t Eleanor pull out a fabulous dress like the one she wore for her Moroccan party back in “The Handmaiden’s Tale”? She's a famous fashion designer and this is the best she can do? I find this difficult to believe.
Even her peignoir set is shiny. But I’m going to give her a free pass because she’s lovely and glowing after her hookup with Roman’s friend.
As for Eleanor’s ex-husband, Harold looks classic and elegant in his sweater and slacks combination.
Again, more great red from Eric Daman. I love this maroon sweater paired with the light pink polo and gray slacks. He looks fantastic.
Harold looks even better during the ice skating excursion. Love the layered light blue and camel shirts, topped by the perfectly cut gray blazer. Extraordinarily classy. Male chic without looking overly ridiculous.
Unfortunately he too swings and misses at his ex-wife’s Christmas get-together.
The red and green is subtle and well-done. Not too cheesy. I especially like the striped pattern with olive greens and browns in his sweater. Casual but dressy enough for a party.
However . . .
Plaid bell bottoms? Really? Harold, I am disappointed. Blair should have said something. She definitely would have if it had been one of her St. Jude's boys. But I guess this really does prove love is blind.
The next morning, he changes into a much improved outfit.
Harold gets my Chuck Bass Man-of-Fashion award for this episode, mostly for this inspired ensemble of plaid shirt, Fair Isle sweater, and that wonderful gray jacket. Mixing patterns can be a risky business, as Vanessa has learned, but clearly Harold Waldorf is a master (just make sure that plaid and pants are not involved).
As for Harold’s lover, Roman, I can’t say that I’m honestly impressed.
We’ve been hearing about Roman since the premiere episode of Gossip Girl, but this is the first time he appears on the show, and after such a buildup, this is kind of a letdown.
I find it difficult to believe that this man was a model as recently as a year prior. Not that he’s ugly necessarily, but he’s old. And his face looks well...not very model-like. Also, that heavily patterned shirt underneath his staid gray sweater looks like something you’d wear to Miami South Beach, not a Manhattan penthouse. No wonder Blair was upset at his unexpected arrival.
For ice skating, he does a little better. I really think this leather jacket looks good on him, and the gray turtleneck is moving in more model-chic direction. Plus, whatever he did to his hair was a vast improvement.
For the party, he goes the simple route again.
Nothing to complain about. Again, red looks great on Roman. It does glisten slightly, but I think it isn't quite shiny enough to invoke the same wrath Eleanor does on a routine basis. I’m not sure about the blazer—it’s hard to see but I think it might be a very dark brown, and perhaps a velvet. If I’m right than this is much worse than I thought it was, but because I’m not sure, he also gets a free pass.
Definitely my favorite look of Roman’s from this episode has to be this one, worn on Christmas morning:
The smartly tailored, navy blue military jacket is wonderful, and I even love the white and blue knit sweater he’s wearing underneath. Take note, Dan, this is what you should be wearing when you pull a sweater and/or cardigan out of your closet—if closets even exist in the fashion black hole that’s the Humphrey loft.
Finally, we have the most important Waldorf of all: Miss Blair herself.
Christmas might not be Thanksgiving, but Blair’s still putting her best foot forward, since her dad’s coming home this year.
Unlike Serena, sometimes Blair’s schoolgirl outfits border on fussy and overdone. Of course, also unlike Serena, Blair believes in covering up the goods and that sequins aren’t for every occasion.
Regardless, this is still a bit much.
I like the idea of the outfit, but in execution, it all becomes a bit much. The ruffled placket on her shirt and the cute red bow belt might have worked on their own, but together, it’s overkill. The blue jacket and its matching skirt are good simple pieces. The headband is a nice touch, but again, it feels like one cute accessory too many.
Without the bow belt, the headband looks like the perfect finishing touch—a red ribbon pulling together Blair’s wonderful red patent leather bag and the navy in the plaid echoing the blue in her coat and skirt. I can’t tell what the emblem is, but it looks festive.
Unfortunately the full view is even worse.
The clashing blue of the tights combined with those butt-ugly shiny black boots push this into a hot mess zone.
I went back and forth on this next outfit, and I finally decided that even if it’s twee even for Blair and the overall cheesiness is excessive, I don’t care. I love it anyway, if only because it’s such a Blair thing to wear. Of course she would own figure skating outfits. This is Blair Waldorf we’re talking about, whose wardrobe is only slightly less obsessively-complete than Cher in Clueless.
Is it ridiculous? Absolutely. But in my mind, this is a very pre-series outfit, which makes sense. Harold’s back in town, and suddenly Blair morphs back into his “Blair-bear.” There’s a lot of over-dressed similarity between this and the jumper/turtleneck combination Blair wears in the flashback sequence of “Blair Waldorf Must Pie!”
To start at the top, the beret is Jenny levels of adorable. Love the little puffballs, like tiny marshmallows. Even the ivory gloves have tiny bows on them.
But just in case you actually believed that Blair owned a matching tulle-lined plaid skirt and a capelet, you are wrong. The pieces, which I always assumed matched, don’t. No, if you look closely, they are similar plaids, but they are not the same. Matchy-matchy crisis averted.
I don't know what happened at Eleanor's Christmas party but there was a serious lack of good sartorial decisions.
Unlike Blair’s figure skating ensemble, I have absolutely zero compunction in saying this is a horrible outfit, unflattering and downright ugly. I hate the ivory and gold brocade of the dress—it looks exactly like the tablecloth my mother uses at Christmas.
Even worse, it fits poorly, hanging on poor Blair more like a sack than a dress.
And the final insult?
That awful red headband. Why is it so puffy? God only knows. The whole outfit is just a mistake; in retrospect, Blair should be pleased than neither Chuck or Nate had to witness this fashion disaster.
I know I laid into Serena pretty heavily for her Christmas morning nightwear, calling its scantiness inappropriate.
Well, I’m going to be hypocritical now, and say that Blair’s is awesome.
Does Blair get a free pass because the red and white polka-dot pattern of her very short nightgown is reminiscent of innocent Disney characters and therefore permissible? I don’t know, but I do acknowledge that my opinion of Blair’s appearance is probably not very fair to Serena.
Also, I think I need to point out that this is the same white filmy robe we see Blair wear for almost all of season 1. Props to Eric Daman for consistency—even Blair wouldn’t have more than one or two robes in her wardrobe.