Style Counsel: Chandra Obie

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Occupation: Textile Conservator, Cincinnati Art Museum; Conservator-in-Chief, Obie Textile Conservation

Her Style: Simple, but with hattitude.

How has your professional life impacted your style? At the museum, I have access to such beautiful, unique things—and I spend enough time with the objects to really appreciate them. Recently, I did research for a gallery talk that included Mr. John hats. After that, I started buying his ’50s– and ’60s–style hats on eBay, and some Schiaparelli, too.

How do you build your outfits? Simple, tailored pieces from places like Banana Republic are boring and forgettable by themselves, but make great backdrops for hats, shoes, and jewelry. Fashion is often just a murmur, but every once in a while you should have a statement to make. Accessories help you form a full sentence.

What’s your go-to accessory? Hats. They are so amazing. When I booked a red-eye flight from the American Institute of Conservators convention in San Francisco to New York City for the Friends of Fashion tour at The Met, I packed my orange Mr. John hat. A quick change from flight attire to my little black suit and this fabulous hat—no one noticed the red-eye.

Where do you shop in Cincinnati? I love Hi-Bred on Woodburn Avenue. I also like bargains, so I’m a Goodwill and thrift store–type shopper. My new favorite is Valley Thrift.

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