So Chic, Very Chic: Lady Dune

So Chic, Very Chic: Lady Dune

BYJoan SummersFeb 29, 2024

This is So Chic, Very Chic, PAPER’s examination of Bravo’s sprawling cohort of fashion obsessives. From haute couture to TJ Maxx, they’ve literally worn it all. Sometimes they stunt, sometimes they turn the look, and sometimes they burn holes in retinas my ophthalmologist says might never heal.

Dorit Kemsley wore a rather startling hooded gown to this week’s Real Housewives of Beverly Hills reunion, which sparked immediate comparisons to Dune.

Specifically, the collective Dune and Bravo watching audience — which seems to be just me and my imaginary friends at this point — were reminded of Lady Jessica, Bene Gesserit concubine to Duke Leto Atreides. As a Bene Gesserit, she is naturally secretive and often seen as manipulative and removed from the people around her. Installed by her order, she conceives a son to help usher along the birth of the prophesied future revolutionary of the known universe.

It’s easy to see the connection to Dorit, described by her castmates in much the same way. There she is, in some far off reality, clicking her future-acrylics on the supermassive granite slab in the meeting hall of a space-folding ship. Lady Dorit awaits news about their arrival to Caladan, the watery homeworld to which she’s been sentenced by the Reverend Mother on her quest to control the genetic lineages of all known imperial houses. She sighs, and the Atreides guards present as a formality twitch just slightly, worried she might use her witch powers to control their minds again.

Caladan’s endless oceans stretch into view, and she adjusts her blood-red hood just so. Can’t we all just see it so clearly!

But a thought skitters at the corner of this fantasy, breaching the horrifying stillness of space. The comparison works, sure, but Dorit is no Lady Jessica of the House Atreides. That honor is owed to Kyle Richards, who not only fits the bill, but, in my estimation, should be recast into Villeneuve’s ongoing cinematic epic.

Those who get it will get it, and those who don’t should read about some fashions below.

Vanderpump Rules

Katie Maloney

I’ve been rather complementary to Katie Maloney this season, and that’s because she’s switched it up and given the girls something to ogle at. That won’t stop this week! Yes, technically, this Chanel knockoff isn’t anything special, but it works for her, even if she should have stuck to pearls instead of the castoff Emo Nite jewelry. I’d also like to point out that her nails are chrome. Just something to think about!

Tom Schwartz

What a portrait of a man. Remember when he was described as one of the hottest guys on Bravo? It’s interesting how fast the worst parts of Florida will catch up with someone when they refuse to heal, or be a better person, or not detach themselves from a compulsive liar and narcissist. I’d like to remind everyone he’s wearing this yellow zip-up in June! In Los Angeles! It was like, 95 degrees!

Scheana Shay and Brock Davies

I’m not going to cheer on marital issues, as everyone knows I hate to see happy couples fight. That said, the simmering scandal between this pair is palpable this season, even if I’m oddly comforted by the fact they chose to fight outside a swimsuit store in these outfits. If there’s one thing you can count on in California, it’s a couple in a crop top and Vans and snapbacks and gym shorts and overlarge pants fighting on the sidewalk outside a swimsuit store.

Hero, unnamed

The shop assistant awkwardly had to fold the bikinis Scheana had tried on while she and Brock screamed outside. We’ll likely never know their name, but I’d like to take a moment to commend them on their composure, grace and commitment to retail. Also, that’s a cute banana clip! DM PAPER on Instagram, I’d love to know where you got it.

Lisa Vanderpump

The Matron Saint of Swans and Champagne is opening a tourist trap in Lake Tahoe that’s wolf-themed. Naturally, she had a photoshoot with wolf-like dogs to promote it. Let’s focus in on her blazer with the leather elbow pads, paired with what is unmistakably an Hermes scarf, or something that thinks it's an Hermes scarf. If there’s anything that’s fixed in this world, it’s her commitment to looking exactly the same no matter where she is.

Whether we’re in the aforementioned space-folding ship in Dune or a forest in Lake Tahoe or a gay bar in West Hollywood or a Michelin-starred restaurant in London, viewers can count on Lisa to show up in a herringbone suit with oversized buttons and leather elbow pads.

Lala Kent

Lala has two speeds with her wardrobe. Either she’s in a full-length NastyGal mesh with matching gloves and sock heels, or she’s dressed like a bank robber disguised as a poker dealer in an A24 movie about lady burglars. Here we see an example of the second speed. I couldn’t quite figure out what to fix my eyes on when she first hopped on this escalator, but I think I’ve settled on the Moschino shirt. What a funny addition! Her mind is mysterious and I’m endlessly fascinated by it. Kudos, Lala. This is one of my favorite looks we’ve seen all year.

Real Housewives of Beverly Hills

Sutton Stracke, Garcelle Beauvais, Crystal Kung Minkoff

Together, these women have saved TheReal Housewives of Beverly Hills from an otherwise disastrous season. Better yet, they looked beautiful in the process. Sutton is in Schiaparelli, which gagged me. That’s a real fashion bitch! The cut is beautiful and elegant on her, and I love the flower appliqué and chain with the matching gold wristlet. What a star!

Garcelle, meanwhile, has never looked better at the reunion. This hair length is perfect for her, and I’ll overlook the fact her dress is Dolce & Gabbana, because she looks totally poured into it. Kudos to her stylist, even if they’ve ignored our ongoing cultural boycott of those italians.

Crystal, meanwhile, is in a custom dress, which is fine! The color is gorgeous on her, even if the fit of it seems dated. Like we’ve stepped back in time to a period when it mattered what Tom Ford was sending down the runway.

Annemarie Wiley, Dorit Kemsley, Erika Jayne, Kyle Richards

Nurse Anesthetist Annemarie looks better than she’s ever looked on this show and deserves credit for that. Kudos! Dorit, meanwhile, is in her full Lady Jessica, which also happens to be Schiaparelli. When Andy saw it, he said, “Okay, hood!” Let’s all say it now, together: Okay, hood! It’s funny though. When Sutton wears Schiaparelli, she’s transformed into a refined southern belle with millions of dollars in alimony from her ex-husband. When Dorit wears Schiaparelli, however, she looks like this.

As for Erika’s RuPaul’s Drag Race costume, or Kyle’s Victoria Beckham gown, they both look exactly like we’d expect them to look. Erika will probably lose the lip sync in that, even if she’s used to lip syncing her tracks. Kyle’s dress will look resplendent and chic while she weeps about her family falling apart, those tendrils of hair sticking to her face and smudging her contour from all that salt and moisture.

Sorry for the jumpscare. I just wanted one more look at Dorit’s hair tentacle before we send TheReal Housewives of Beverly Hills into the night. Au revoir!

Real Housewives of Miami

Adriana de Moura, Nicole Martin, Lisa Hochstein, Larsa Pippen

The women of Miami have pushed me to the absolute limit this season. Their fashions have never been more extreme, their personalities never more exaggerated, their lives never more out-of-touch. I’ll miss them dearly when they’re gone, except for the tomes of fashion observations their outfits demand of my poor little fingers.

For all their feuding, it's downright comical that Larsa and Adriana showed up in the exact same outfit, even if Larsa’s divorce settlement afforded her slightly nicer fabrics. They look like widows in an HBO miniseries about Italian wives of Renaissance lords, based on bogus history and with no accuracy for the costumes. (Technically speaking, that’s essentially what the short lived Reign was, albeit geographically distinct.)

Nicole’s dress is mostly pedestrian, even if she looks downright gorgeous. However, considering she’s noticeably pregnant, it gives me the ick to critique her in the slightest. Lisa, however, has never looked better. Red is absolutely her color, which is ironic, considering. Kudos to everyone!

Guerdy Abraira, Alexia Nepola, Julia Lemigova, Kiki Barth, Marysol Patton

What a cast! I’m running out of steam, so let’s go quick. Guerdy’s post-cancer glow is a sight to behold, and she shines like an angel in this resplendent white gown. Alexia, for once, is dressed casually for the occasion. Julia looks like a Roberto Cavalli model from the early years that got frozen in a block of ice and defrosted just recently (that's a compliment.) Red is also the perfect color on Kiki, and Marysol legitimately looks like she stuck a birdcage on her wedding dress. Good for her, I’m glad she got the attention she sought from me this season.

Photos courtesy of NBCUniversal/ Bravo