South Florida In Style

South Florida In Style

If we had to guess, we would peg these 15 as most likely to have been voted “Best Dressed” when they were in high school. Today, each of these locals works in different industries and has different hobbies, but they all have one thing in common: They understand the power of style and make it a point to walk out the door each morning looking their best.

by Jennifer Tormo Nov 2014 Also on Digital Edition

Michelle DiMarco

Michelle DiMarco

Propertier of Lilac And Lilies Boutique

Michelle DiMarco has made a living dressing other people.

As a child, she would come home after school on Fridays and host mock fashion shows with her friends, coordinating the outfits, hair and makeup.

Fast forward to today, and the 35-year-old owns Lilac And Lilies in Fort Lauderdale, and often styles real fashion shoots. She also spends her days meeting designers, buying for the shop, trend forecasting and consulting for customers.

But she’ll be the first to tell you that it’s not all glamour. Owning a business means she mops the floors, cleans the windows, handles payroll and manages her team.

“We work really frickin’ hard,” she says.

But when she locks up Lilac And Lilies at the end of every day, she still feels like the luckiest girl in the world.

What does “style” mean to you?

It means being able to express yourself through clothing.

Describe your personal style in three words.

Edgy, classic and feminine.

Most treasured item in your closet?

A Gucci bag that I got in Italy. It’s like a limited edition. They made 15 of them. It’s white, crocodile-embossed and has a bamboo, gold chain strap. It has metal gold dragons and is embossed with Swarovski crystals and freshwater pearls.

Best vintage find?

I got it from a lady who used to collect these kinds of things – it’s a 1920s flapper dress. It’s not too costume-y. It’s lace and beading.

Must-haves for staying stylish while traveling?

My Chanel ballet flats, a blazer and oversized sunglasses.

Favorite designers?

Gucci, Rag & Bone and Tom Ford.

Trend you don’t like?

I’m going to be honest. The ’70s-inspired palazzo pants. They’re comfortable, yes, but they never jived with me. [And] this Birkenstock trend – not a fan of it.

The best part about styling other people?

First and foremost, it’s making the person feel confident and good about themselves.

Brent Stuart

Brent Stuart

Physical therapist

Scroll through Brent Stuart’s Facebook photos, and you’ll quickly get that he’s a Man About Town. He’s always posing with the it-crowd at Sunday polo in Palm Beach, getting cocktails in downtown Delray, strolling through the stands at Art Basel in Miami, or jet setting off to San Francisco. And he’s always – always – dressed up.

Even for his day job as a physical therapist, the 35-year-old tosses traditional medical scrubs aside in favor of practical but stylish Lululemon, Nike and Adidas attire. And he always finishes the look with his most fashionable, loud Newton Running shoes.

After work, he trades his sneakers for some of the most treasured items in his closet: Salvatore Ferragamo loafers, Grenson boots or Del Toro shoes.

What does “style” mean to you?

Style is personal. My identity. Individuality. The truly stylish man always feels comfortable and confident in what he puts on because it’s a reflection of his inner self.

Describe your personal style in three words.

Sophisticated, classy, edgy.

Go-to look for a night out?

If you can’t find me in a white T-shirt, jeans and Chuck Taylor sneakers, I can be spotted in a tucked-in, fitted dress shirt, slim jeans and Ferragamo loafers.

What are your three must-haves for staying stylish while traveling?

I never leave town without my sunglasses (Persol, Illesteva or Ray-Ban), Creed cologne and salon hair product. A peek into my suitcase would reveal a chambray shirt; a fitted blue sports jacket; dark, slim-fit jeans; and comfortable dress boots.

Best thing about getting dressed in South Florida?

I can wear white jeans year-round. No color is too bold. [And] loafers!

If you could borrow clothes from anyone’s closet, who would it be?

Tom Ford. Every woman loves a man in a well-fitted suit. And Tom is able to combine sophistication with a distinctive masculinity in all his menswear.

Favorite boutiques to shop at in South Florida?

Cottage Miami and Del Toro.

Dr. Kimmi Stultz

Dr. Kimmi Stultz

Director of pharmacy at Life Extension and founder of Green Pharmacist

Kimmi Stultz wore a red dress on her wedding day.

She knew exactly what she wanted, so she had the dress custom-made by Neiman Marcus Boca Raton. Wearing a floor-length, silk-blend chiffon gown with long sleeves of chantilly lace and a flower in her hair, this lady in red was stunning.

She takes after her mother, who also wore a red dress for her wedding day. “I wanted to recreate that image, but make it more my style ... and I hope one day if I have a daughter she will want to do that same thing and create a family tradition,” she says.

Stultz paid her way through college working at boutiques, spending hours studying seams and fittings. She developed a keen eye for style. Today, the 32-year-old always finds a way to express herself through clothing, no matter the setting. “Pharmacists are usually wearing a lab coat. Not this pharmacist,” she says. At work, you’ll find her in a black dress, Christian Louboutin pumps or ankle boots and a scarf.

What does “style” mean to you?

Style is an artistic expression and exploratory journey of your personality.

Describe your personal style in three words.

Audacious, eclectic, feminine.

Go-to look for a night out?

Jumper, cross-over bag, edgy heels.

If you could borrow clothes from anyone’s closet, who would it be?

Olivia Palermo. Her covetable sense of style is impeccable. The way she mixes contemporary cuts with feminine classics and her subtle infusion of vintage pieces is fashion utopia!

Most treasured item in your closet?

Chanel black silk-satin, round-toe with gold-mirrored heel. They were my wedding shoes. I wanted something classic for the wedding but a little hint of goth-glam.

What are your must-haves for staying stylish while traveling?

Big scarf, simple tee, relaxed blazer, socks with simple boots – no buckles. Don’t forget the socks! Do not tip-toe through security with bare feet.

Favorite designers?

T by Alexander Wang, Halston Heritage, McQ by Alexander McQueen, Diane von Furstenberg, Rag & Bone.

Favorite boutique to shop at in South Florida?

Lilac And Lilies.

Rick J. Mijares

Rick J. Mijares

Managing Partner of American Social

On any given night at American Social, you might see Dolphins and Panthers players, reality TV show stars, and a smattering of South Florida’s heavy hitters.

There’s a good chance you’d also spot Rick Mijares.

As the owner of the wildly popular restaurant and bar, Mijares is just as well-known and well-liked as the see-and-be-seen crowd his restaurant attracts.

“South Florida has always been cutting edge in the fashion industry, and you always have the freedom to express yourself – however you see fit,” the 34-year-old says.

Cheers to that.

What does “style” mean to you?

For me, it’s about maintaining an image that always represents myself and American Social in the most appropriate manner. I am lucky enough to chat with guests, celebrities and athletes every single day, and I always want to ensure I look my best.

Describe your personal style in three words.

Fresh, fresh and fresh.

If you could borrow clothes from anyone’s closet, who would it be and why?

David Beckham, I think. He looks like a chill dude with that vintage/casual look I’m always wearing.

Most treasured item in your closet?

My watches – but you probably want me to say my shoes. I have too many pairs. Just ask my wife.

Go-to look for work?

Jeans, vintage tee, long-sleeve button-down and some Cole Haan Chukkas.

What are your three must-haves for staying stylish while traveling?

Great driver hat, an all-purpose jacket and a solid pair of blue jeans.

Toughest part of dressing in South Florida?

Humidity and heat. I love my coats, jackets and winter gear, and never get an opportunity to wear it in South Florida. But I sure look good when I travel to NYC, Chicago or Aspen.

Favorite designers?

Diesel, Cole Haan and Audemars Piguet – one of the best watch companies in the world.

Favorite boutiques to shop at in South Florida?

The Archives and Elektrik Boutique.

Zade & Tim Conner

Zade & Tim Conner

Fitness and real estate entrepreneurs

Zade and Tim Conner tell a funny tale about how they met. The story goes that Tim was on a date with another girl when he struck up a conversation with Zade. He didn’t remember his date until a beer bottle flew across the room at him.

That was more than 30 years ago, and the two have been inseparable ever since.

The Conners are the absolute definition of a power couple. Zade, 54, is a former Miss South Carolina USA. Tim, 55, is a print and commercial model. And, they owned a chain of successful fitness centers in South Carolina together before moving to Fort Lauderdale last year to invest in their new real estate company, Jet Set Properties.

Throughout their careers, the Conners have learned a crucial life lesson: “Any goal can be accomplished – including great style – without breaking the bank,” Zade says.

What does “style” mean to you?

Zade: Style is not necessarily about what you’re wearing. It’s how you present yourself in what you’re wearing. Confidence can carry off any style you like.

Describe your personal style in three words.

Zade: Classic, practical and versatile.

Tim: Relaxed, casual, sophisticated.

Best thing about getting dressed in South Florida?

Zade: Coming from a small town, I didn’t have much of an opportunity to really dress up. In South Florida that opportunity is there every single day and night.

Go-to look for a night out?

Tim: Since my business does not require suits, they are my first choice for a night out.

If you could borrow clothes from anyone’s closet, who would it be and why?

Zade: I would love to dig into Halle Berry’s closet. Her style is very similar to mine. I love how she can make jeans and a simple T-shirt look classy, and then look absolutely stunning in an evening gown without drowning it in accessories.

Tim: Pierce Brosnan. If James Bond wore it, I want it!

Most treasured item in your closet?

Tim: My blue suede shoes that I purchased in Vegas. Everyone knows I’m a huge Elvis fan.

What are your three must-haves for staying stylish while traveling?

Tim: Workout attire, jeans and the biggest must-have – hair gel. Don’t laugh!

Brad Minto

Brad Minto

Owner of The Archives

As Brad Minto’s personal shoe collection surmounted 300 pairs, he realized it was time to open a store of his own. Two years later, The Archives, a clothing and shoe boutique, is still like nothing else on Las Olas Boulevard. Designed to feel like a man cave, the store offers beer on tap and tunes selected by a DJ.

The store appeals to both business-minded attorneys and laid-back surfer-types, Minto says. As for his own style, the 37-year-old doesn’t buy into trends, and is not into broadcasting labels and brands all over his clothes.

“I’ve met really cool, stylish people who have picked up things from a thrift store and wear it well, and I’ve also had friends who have shopped at Bal Harbour and wear clothes that cost $2,000, and it looks horrible,” he says.

After all, he points out, it’s kind of a cool feeling when people ask where you got your shirt.

What does “style” mean to you?

More than just the clothes itself – just more an attitude, the way you carry yourself, the way that you present yourself.

Describe your personal style in three words.

Timeless, minimalist and classic.

If you could borrow clothes from anyone’s closet, who would it be?

Maybe Sinatra. He was pretty well-dressed, pretty timeless. I like the fact that he wore a lot of black and whites.

Most treasured item in your closet?

I have a super vintage, like late ’70s, Adidas track jacket. ... It was given to me by my father. My father taught me a lot about fashion. I look at pictures of him, and a lot of the shirts he wore you could still wear to this day. I was able to snag this [jacket], and it still looks so money.

Favorite designers?

I love Ralph Lauren. I’ve loved everything about the line since I was a kid. … I’ve been wearing a lot from this brand called A.P.C – kind of a monochromatic, monotone look – clean lines.

Amanda Perna

Amanda Perna

Fashion designer and creative director of The House of Perna

After working as a corporate designer for Calvin Klein for four years, Amanda Perna was used to seeing women on the street wearing her dresses. But seeing someone wear a piece from her own line? “It was surreal,” she says. “I had seen tons of models wearing them for photo shoots and fashion shows, but seeing a ‘real woman’ wear it was beyond exciting.”

The 28-year-old was one of a million designers in New York City trying to start her own brand when she got a big break – a spot on season nine of “Project Runway.” Though her stint on the show was a short one, it offered her enough exposure to start The House of Perna.

Her dream was always to have business meetings on the beach, so she eventually moved back to her hometown of South Florida – where her Delray-based showroom is a short walk from the beach.

What does “style” mean to you?

I think style is a way of expressing yourself without having to say anything.

Describe your personal style in three words.

Eclectic, colorful and fun.

Go-to look for work?

Considering I’m either at the studio designing something or on set at a photo shoot, my go-to for work is one of our “jet setter pants” (comfy, printed pants) with a T-shirt and blazer.

If you could borrow clothes from anyone’s closet, who would it be?

It would probably be Sarah Jessica Parker. I genuinely love her sense of style. It is so eclectic and unique.

Best vintage find?

This really incredible pair of Christian Lacroix fully beaded pants that I got at a consignment shop for really cheap. And it was like, five sizes too big and I didn’t care.

Favorite designers?

Christian Lacroix – I am absolutely obsessed with his use of color and prints; his clothes really come to life. I really like what they’ve done with Helmut Lang ... the architecture of the clothes is really beautiful. Third would be Lanvin – I just love the whimsy of his clothes.

Favorite places to shop?

My number one is always Neiman Marcus, whether it’s to shop or look at inspiration. The way they curate what they buy is really spectacular.

Mario Argiro

Mario Argiro

Founder and principal of Moda Mario

Few people have influenced Fort Lauderdale fashion as much as Mario Argiro has. Over the last 40 years, he has owned eight stores across the city.

The 69-year-old has outfitted everyone from Paul Newman, Johnny Carson and Dustin Hoffman to prominent South Floridians. He even created the wardrobe for “Miami Vice.”

Growing up, Argiro’s interest in fashion was sparked by watching his father tailor his own suits. In the ’60s, Argiro became the creative director for an ad agency in New York, working on accounts like Ray-Ban and producing high-end commercials. Every day, he would stop at an Italian boutique on the Upper East Side and buy at least one thing. One day, the manager called and suggested he buy the shop – and he did.

He fell in love with South Florida in the ’70s and moved here, opening his flagship boutique, Moda Mario, on Las Olas in 1975. And the rest is history.

What does “style” mean to you?

Mostly it’s how I feel wearing my clothing. The weight, the feel of the cloth and so on. If you have something that fits you well and feels comfortable, your attitude changes.

Describe your personal style in three words.

Quality, fashion, taste.

Best thing about getting dressed in South Florida?

With this humidity that we have and knowing that you have to be comfortable, the approach is the right weight and the right fabrics – you don’t go out in 100-degree weather [in] a heavy wool suit. You wear a lightweight suit – cotton or silk.

Who is your style icon?

My dad was my mentor. He was one of the greatest tailors and the most well-dressed. … He always dressed to the nines.

Favorite designers?

I love Armani. ... He’s conservative, elegant … all these other designers come and go.

Lindsey Swing & Lilly Robbins

Lindsey Swing & Lilly Robbins

Co-founders of LLScene

Lindsey Swing and Lilly Robbins are always borrowing each other’s clothes.

It’s easy to mistake these Boca-based best friends for sisters. They do everything together. They share a marketing and event planning business called LLScene, have many of the same friends, blog together and have an equal fervor for fashion.

Their styles are different but complementary. Robbins, a former Miami Dolphins cheerleader, is feminine yet edgy, and Swing, 27, is girly and bohemian.

Neither one is afraid to get experimental with style. When Swing bought a pair of overalls, her friends told her she was crazy, but she was determined to make it work, pairing it with a crop top and Chuck Taylors. And Robbins, 26, weaves bold pieces like leather shorts, cut-offs and jumpsuits into her wardrobe. “I think style means individuality,” Swing says.

What does “style” mean to you?

Robbins: Definitely feeling your most confident, wearing something that you feel complements you, your body type. You feel good in it.

Swing: I’m not like, very talented when it comes to the art world – you know, painting and even DIY projects. I don’t have the patience for [it]. So I find my artistic side through my style.

Your personal style in three words?

Robbins: Simple yet classy with an edge.

Swing: Boho with a splash of chic with casual-glam.

Go-to look for a business meeting?

Robbins: Definitely a classy pencil skirt, a clean shirt, maybe a pop of color here and there.

Swing: My business-casual side is really non-existent. I have a really cute maxi dress that I wear, and I just throw a blazer on and accessorize it.

Go-to look for a night out?

Swing: Lately it’s been palazzo pants. … I’m into the bellbottom look. It’s back in style, and it’s so comfortable. With a white T-shirt or a graphic cotton tee – casual, comfortable. And wedges. A big chunky tote bag and chunky jewelry to dress up a little bit more.

If you could borrow clothes from anyone’s closet, who would it be?

Robbins: I do follow Kim Kardashian’s style. She does really well with her age and curves, and flaunting it in a stylish way.

Swing: Vanessa Hudgens. I love her style. ... She has the perfect boho, kind of festival look – hair bands, hair accessories.

Best style score?

Swing: I got really lucky with my rehearsal dinner dress. It was off of For the longest time, I kept trying to get it, but it was always sold out. A week before our wedding, I didn’t know what I was going to do, but I logged on and it was the first picture that popped up – and it was 40 percent off.

Favorite designers?

Robbins: I love Rachel Zoe. Big fan of her designs and her style. Zac Posen is amazing. He’s a little eccentric but I love him. I do love Trina Turk. I love following her vision. She posts on Instagram, and I love following her patterns and designs.

Swing: I like Ark & Co and Rachel Zoe. And Tory Burch for accessories, shoes and bags.

Favorite boutiques to shop at in South Florida?

Robbins: Shusha Boutique in Mizner. … I love Boca Leche. When I worked in Fort Lauderdale I went [there] on my lunch break every day.

Swing: LF. There’s also a new boutique that opened in Mizner, Shusha. It’s a trendy-type store, kind of like LF. They have a lot of go-to items, and they also have really cute jumpsuits and rompers.

Marc Falsetto

Marc Falsetto

CEO and founder of JEY Hospitality Group

Without Marc Falsetto, the South Florida restaurant scene would lose some of its vibrancy. As the man behind five of the area’s hottest restaurants and bars, including Rok:Brgr and Himmarshee Public House, Falsetto is looked at as a trendsetter.

“All my concepts are cutting edge,” Falsetto says. “I believe my style reflects that. I also have to look sharp 24/7, as I am in the public eye.”

If you ask the 35-year-old whose style he admires, he won’t hesitate to answer Tom Ford, citing the designer’s experience as a creative director for YSL and Gucci before founding his own line. “The man knows what he’s doing. He’s a pioneer,” he says.

You could say the same for Falsetto.

What does “style” mean to you?

Style is a great way to show others your personality and also a good tool to project confidence. Someone’s style says a lot about them.

Describe your personal style in three words.

Sophisticated, powerful, tailored.

Go-to look for work or a business meeting?

AG “Graduate” pants and a tailored button-down. Sometimes a blazer but never a tie.

Best thing about getting dressed in South Florida?

Nobody really gets dressed up. So shorts and a golf shirt are totally acceptable here.

Worst thing about getting dressed in South Florida?

Nobody really gets dressed up. It’s so hot you can never really wear all the nice stuff like jackets, coats, scarfs.

Most treasured item in your closet?

Definitely my Louis Vuitton briefcase.

What are your three must-haves for staying stylish while traveling?

Shoes, shoes and more shoes. People that pack light always forget shoes. Louis Vuitton dress shoes, Prada loafers, Gucci high-tops. Everything else will fall into place after that.

Favorite designers?

Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Burberry and Tom Ford.

Favorite boutiques to shop at in South Florida?

Louis Vuitton in the Aventura Mall. Saks Fifth Avenue, Bal Harbour Shops and The Archives on Las Olas.

Skye Dyer

Skye Dyer

Singer/songwriter

Skye Dyer belongs in the spotlight.

In home videos from her childhood, she can be seen moving her sisters out of the way so she could be the center of attention. “I now watch those videos and cringe, but I realized I was training for my life as a performer,” the singer writes on her website.

Today, the 33-year-old travels from her home in Delray across the globe to perform her folk-soul contemporary pieces. She released an EP, “Letting Go,” earlier this year.

On stage, she’s usually in a funky dress or a skirt and heels. “I think the fashion side of it is just as important because it’s showing people who I am,” she says.

What does “style” mean to you?

I think it shows the mood you’re in. It’s about being myself. … My personality is coming through what I’m wearing.

Describe your personal style in three words.

Eclectic, classic, colorful.

If you could borrow clothes from anyone’s closet, who would it be?

You know who I actually really like? Emma Stone. I actually think every time I see her she looks ridiculously good. I really like what she just wore to the Met Ball. ... I liked how everyone was in their crazy ball gowns, and she was in a pink crop top with a floor-length, hot pink skirt.

Most treasured item in your closet?

This black leather jacket I’ve had for six years. It’s like, a motorcycle black jacket by Veda. You know, when you put something on and it just makes you look cooler immediately?

What are your three must-haves for staying stylish while traveling?

I always have a great pair of shoes. … I always bring a great tank dress, and I always bring a great piece of jewelry, whether it be a necklace or a great pair of earrings.

Favorite designers?

I’m obsessed with Tibi. ... I love A.L.C.; I think they make really cool things. Equipment – I wear a lot of those silk tops.

Favorite boutiques to shop at in South Florida?

I love Intermix. There’s a good one in Boca called Alene Too. There’s a really cute new store in Delray – LoveRich.

Laurie Silvers

Laurie Silvers

Media entrepreneur and founder of Hollywood Media

For Laurie Silvers, clothing is a performance art.

Her life has always revolved around what happens on stage and on camera. She founded the Sci-Fi Channel (now the Syfy Channel) in the ’80s, and today she is heavily involved with the Kravis Center, active on many of the non-profit’s boards.

So when she dresses up, Silvers uses her imagination. “I like to play with things,” the 62-year-old Boca resident says. “Maybe I’ll have a full skirt, or embellishments.”

An active philanthropist, she supports the American Red Cross, the American Heart Association and numerous other charities, and she mentors at-risk teen girls with The Women of Tomorrow.

So it makes sense that her mailbox is always stuffed with save-the-dates and invitations. She spends many nights and weekends at charity benefits, cocktail parties and galas. And each event is just another chance to express her creativity.

What does “style” mean to you?

It’s how you want to present yourself to the world and how you want to be perceived.

Describe your personal style in three words.

Conservative, professional and approachable.

If you could borrow clothes from anyone’s closet, who would it be and why?

My style icon was my mother. She just had an amazing skill of pulling together things from her closet – things that may be vintage or brand new; expensive or things that she bought at a thrift store.

Most treasured item in your closet?

[My mother] wore a black cape when it was cool at night, and I love to wear that because it’s like I have her arms around me. ... Through the years, I would raid her closet and take blouses. She just had great accessories, jewelry, pins.

Favorite designers?

I love Oscar de la Renta. Love Oscar’s dresses. Very feminine, and he really knows how to design for a woman’s body. I love Theory – their pieces are practical. … I like Ralph Lauren, as well. He’s got that great, classic style.

Kerry Lloyd Resnick

Kerry Lloyd Resnick

Stylist and co-owner of Salon Sora

Ask an ambitious hairstylist to create a bucket list. It might look something like this: Style for Vogue. Work with some of the world’s best photographers and fashion stylists on photo shoots. Develop a celebrity client list. Do hair make-overs on morning talk shows. Get ranked as one of Manhattan’s top stylists.

For Kerry Llyod Resnick, that’s all old news. He checked every item off that list years ago.

After developing a dream career, Resnick left Manhattan last year to start his own venture in warmer weather. He co-opened Salon Sora in Boca Raton, where, along with his business partner Colorist Frank Marino, he assembled a New York-trained staff.

Sculpting a client’s look through a haircut is still the most rewarding part of his job. “For me, it’s almost like taking a really beautiful picture and framing it properly so you can see the beauty in the picture before you see the frame,” the 63-year-old says.

Using his scissors, he gives clients a new look and confidence – and that’s what style is really about.

What does style mean to you?

Style, to me, is an outer interpretation of how one feels about themself on the inside.

Describe your personal style in three words.

Creative, edgy and modern.

Best thing about getting dressed in South Florida?

You can wear flip-flops, no socks with shoes year-round.

Worst thing about getting dressed in South Florida?

The worst for me is during the winter – I do like a fierce leather jacket, fun scarf and cool boots. But I guess January and February have a few days we can do that in South Florida.

What are your three must-haves for staying stylish while traveling?

I like to keep it simple. I only pack black and whites, and some fierce accessories, that way you can mix and match. So you don’t have to pack too much [to] always look amazing.

Favorite designers?

Gucci, Dolce&Gabbana, Diesel and Prada.

Favorite boutiques to shop at in South Florida?

Bloomingdale’s men’s department. It has everything. For fun, I will throw in some H&M and Zara, or go straight to my favorite designer flagship store. What I like to do is mix high-end with low-end, and put it all together and make it my own.