Michele Varian- -Mycloset-collage


Michele Varian

Designer, retailer, micro-manufacturer, and small-business advocate, Michele Varian, has one of the most dreamy brick-and-mortar stores in NewYork City.

The Michele Varian Store & Design Studio is filled with beautiful designs for the home, and an extensive collection of fine jewelry.
Discover this delightfully, stylish woman’s favorite items… in her closet!   

– as told to The Silver Women


Michele Varian was photographed in her Soho store and New York home for The Silver Women.

MicheleVarian-The Silver Women 2

Favorite item in your closet?

My camo pants.
They are my go-to instead of jeans. Mine are a printed cotton denim with a wide leg and high waist. I like mixing patterns with them, plus they are super utilitarian. The type of work I do can change multiple times in a day. Besides the necessary computer work, I might be painting new artwork for the printed textiles I sell or I might be climbing a ladder as we move the lighting around my shop.

Michele at home in New York City.
Michele at home in New York City.
Pants: High waisted cargo pants in Camo by J.Crew. I purchased them about 4 years ago.
T-Shirt: I especially like the deep V of this black t-shirt from Madewell.
I buy a lot of my staples from them. 
Boots:  I bought these about 20 years ago at Calypso before
I had become good friends with owner/founder Christiane Celle.
She now owns Clic, but only carries a little bit of clothing.
Jewelry: All of my jewelry is from my shop. I carry select pieces from over 70 jewelers,
most of it made in NYC.

“I never use the dryer for my clothes. I let them air dry, which makes them
last a lot longer.”

Do you have an item in your closet that is over 20 years old?

I have MANY items that are over 20 years old. I started my business almost 20 years ago, and since have put most of my income back into growing the company, which has seriously curtailed my personal shopping habits. Not having much of a budget for new clothes is a great incentive not to gain weight! Also, I never use the dryer for my clothes. I let them air dry, which makes them last a lot longer.

A skirt that I made over 20 years ago, is still one of my very favorite pieces. We all know what our physical “ass”ets are and this skirt fits just right. I made it on the bias so that it clings nicely, it is very comfortable and flairs just a bit, so there is lots of movement when I walk. Also, it has slits on the sides, which are much more flattering than front or back slits.
It is about 25 years old!

Michele Varian- The Silver Women

Blouse: The blue silk blouse was purchased from Calypso, back in the day. It’s my absolute favorite top to be seen and photographed in.
Skirt: The velvet skirt with satin trim is handmade by me. 

“My metallic boots are my go-to party shoes.”

Michele Varian- Shoes

Your latest splurge?
Rachel Comey boots.♥

michele Varian- Wardrobe Case

 Boots: Metallic cowboy boots…
I think I bought them at Omari Shoes about 20 years ago.
My latest splurge Rachel Comey boots www.rachelcomey.com 
Gold strappy shoe by A Détacher from a couple of seasons ago.


Who or what has influenced your style?

Paul Poiret, Faye Dunaway in the film Network and Studio 54 scene.

Favorite Designers /Brands?
Dries Van Noten, Rachel Comey, Maria Cornejo, Isabel Marant and Ulla Johnson (the more mod victorian pieces versus the Boho styles) 

Who are the women on your best-dressed list?
Jeanne Damas, Iris Apfel, and Katharine Hepburn.

 The colorful pompom belt is from a trip I took to Thailand and bought at a street market. My shoes, I bought for the same trip, at the Zara store across the street from my apartment in NYC. I purchased them about 15 minutes before the car picked me up for the airport, after realizing that I had no sandals and that it would be summer there!

Michele Varian- Legs

Trousers: The mauve silk trousers are by Alasdair, one of my favorite collections for easy to wear, but elegant pieces.
Top: I bought the top at the closing sale of a really cool store in New York called Language back in the ’90s.
Michele Varian-TSW

 Is there an item you currently have your eye on?
 I would LOVE to own this velvet gold corduroy puff shoulder 
Ulla Johnson dress

Michele varian store 2


Discover Michele Varian:
In addition to Michele’s own collections of textiles, pillows, wallpaper, lighting, and furniture, the Michele Varian Store carries product by 100+ other innovative designers of furniture, home accessories and 70+ locally-based fine jewelry designers.
A visit to this ever-changing store is an utter delight.

Michele Varian Store and Design Studio

27 Howard St, Soho, NYC

Website: www.michelevarian.com
Instagram: @michelevarian
Facebook: @michelevarian
Pinterest: Michele Varian Shop + Design Studio

Michele Varian photographed in New York City.

All Images by Simone Silverman.