So Chic, Very Chic: Of Boobs and Bucket Hats

So Chic, Very Chic: Of Boobs and Bucket Hats

BYJoan SummersDec 21, 2023

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.

‘Twas the week before Christmas, watching my favorite Bravo show, not a Real Housewife was screaming, not even Lisa Barlow. The shield glasses were hung by my mantle with care, in hopes that St. Angie Katsanevas would be there! Whitney Rose took off her makeup before snuggling in bed, while visions of party games swam around her bleached hair head. And Monica in her bikini, and Heather Gay in a bucket hat, had just laid on the yacht for a long vacation spat.

When later at dinner, there arose such a clatter, all the Housewives hobbled in heels to see, “What’s the matter?” Away to the bathroom they flew like a flash, to hear Lisa Barlow shout, "My glam forgot to put on my lash!"

Merry Christmas, dear PAPER readers! With the holiday looming, this week’s column will be short and sweet.

Real Housewives of Miami

Alexia Nepola

After a few weeks beset by a comically large pile of shield glasses, the girls have moved on to other fashion aspirations, like the bucket hat! Here’s Alexia in the Dior printed bucket hat, the pattern of which has also made its appearance on monogrammed book totes across the franchise. It’s not a bad look, per se, but the Dior necklace does send it over the edge into: “I’m rich and don’t know how to put myself together outside blatantly obvious labels."

Keep those eyes peeled for the bucket hats, however! I smell an incoming pandemic of them.

Marysol Patton

Marysol kicked our collective teeth in last week with that corset top, and I still haven’t forgiven her! It doesn’t help that she performed a similar martial arts move on my psyche with this little sweater dress and updo. I can’t help but point out how rich she looks!

It’s just too bad she had to hide on the chair seen above while on the run from a crocodile. I’m serious! Their dinner this week was beset by reptilian invaders.

Julia Lemigova

Good god, does Julia look hot! While her glam left something to be desired at this week’s dinner party, she radiated raw, queer energy in this suit and chain — hair oiled back and eyeliner smudged just enough. While it’s rough around the edges, I did gasp in the gay way!

Real Housewives of Potomac

Robyn Dixon

Life weighs heavy on Robyn, especially this season. Sometimes, when it’s all too much, the only thing a woman can do is sit her ass down on the curb of a strip mall in Texas, where she’ll almost get ran over several times while monologuing to the camera about how her husband definitely isn’t implicated in a Title 9 investigation, and she’s definitely doing just fine.

Mia Thornton

Robyn should look no further for a cure to her malaise than Mia’s confessional outfits this season, which have become something of a cure all for every bad thought I’ve ever had in my life. I mean, how can you look at the desiccated corpses of a traffic cone and disco ball that were turned into a prison for her cleavage and feel anything but lust for life? I want to live a long time — long enough, at least, to see everything this accursed woman wears on television.

Robyn, again

Robyn gets a quite a few licks from her cast mates, and this column and the public in genera, so I figured it best to throw her a bone. This confessional is her most serviceable look yet, and I’m not too mad at it! She looks like a lady who owns a med spa on a billboard by the freeway, which is just about the most positive compliment I can muster at the moment.

Real Housewives of Salt Lake City

Heather Gay

I get that heather is on vacation. I get she didn’t have much makeup on and probably needed to hide her vacation hair from the cameras. I get that this was a quick walk and not a pre-scripted conversation with the entire cast that necessitated a Look with a capital L. Then she turned around.

Seriously, Heather, a bucket hat with an attached chain made of acrylic? Since when did everything have acrylic chains? I saw this exact same chain motif in three different dropshipping stores at the Cherry Hill Mall in New Jersey!

Enough already!

Whitney Rose

The episode this week featured a flashback to Whitney from 2017 that chilled me to the bone. Look at her! It’s like I’m looking into an alternate timeline where she never married Justin or had children and instead was a yoga teacher who was really into Burning Man and the Reiki healer she met at EDC while rolling.

Lisa Barlow

If Angie is in the Greek mafia, Lisa here is in the Russian mob. (Coincidentally, she said she used to get into cars with mobsters back in New York, according to the stories her family have told about her on camera.) This isn’t Real Housewives of Salt Lake City we’re looking at. It's Mob Wives Reloaded!

Angie Katsanevas

Triumphant after her defeat of Meredith Marks last week, Angie descended on a Bermudian yacht wearing this fantastic mesh ensemble and another pair of ridiculously chic shield glasses. She’s like if Ariel from The Little Mermaid sprouted legs and discovered self tanner and wig install tutorials on Youtube.

Southern Hospitality

This is a new show on the roster, and I’d like to take a moment and give it my wholehearted recommendation. It makes me feel alive again, like it’s 2013 again, and I’m watching Real Housewives of Beverly Hills transition seamlessly into Vanderpump Rules.

It centers around a Charleston club called Republic, owned by Leva Bonaparte. Since most probably haven’t seen it yet, here’s a rundown of the current plot lines. One of the characters may or may not have cheated on his girlfriend — a fact discovered by a friend after she walked in on him allegedly getting his dick sucked behind a dumpster. That same friend, meanwhile, is breaking up with her bike taxi driver boyfriend for the hundredth time because he can’t stop hooking up with the girls who crawl into his petty cab. Elsewhere, a bottle service boy who calls himself “The Milk Man” on his OnlyFans is trying to hook up with a girl whose boyfriend is away at law school, while all the gay guys look on in horror.

Let me introduce you to one of its two frontwomen, Grace Lilly, who’s like a sentient tarot deck in a bandage dress.

Grace Lilly

Two of these looks are her work uniforms, complete with pom pom earrings and shield glasses for those daytime brunch services. The woman she’s talking to above is the other half of this equation, Maddi Reese, who combines the best and worst qualities of Stassi Schroeder and Lala Kent. She’s sober, perpetually crying in public and stumbling on her coworkers getting their dick sucked behind a dumpster.

As if I haven’t made the reasons to watch this show excessively clear, however, let’s walk through a play in four acts.

Maddi Reese

Here is Maddi evacuating the diner where she confronted her soon to be ex-boyfriend about cheating on her with a passenger the week prior. The last time she’d seen him had been while wielding a shovel she intended to break his door down with. While at the restaurant, they also had to wait while she asked the waitstaff to charge his phone before he could call his alleged mistress, since it was dead.

Here she is fighting with her man in the bushes, after he’d chased her down the street. While in the bushes, she screams that he’s a liar and not her “person” anymore.

Here she is moments after slamming his phone into the ground.

Here she is realizing she’s just smashed his phone into the ground while they both face the consequences of their actions. I pray for many more years on television with these crazy, crazy kids! May they live long, get rich and find some other place to suck and fuck besides the literal dumpsters behind the club they all work at.

Photos courtesy of Bravo/NBCUniversal Media, LLC