Dressing With Elegance: Caroline Sleiman-Purdy Talks Her Perfect Party Piece

Caroline Sleiman-Purdy, the co-founder and director of Coffeeangel talks about her perfect party piece and signature style with our Fashion director Marie Kelly.

What do you love about this Rocha dress? I was brought up in Lebanon, where French fashion is very prevalent. From a young age, French couture was all around me. I used to dress up in my mum's evening clothes, devour magazines, and as i got older, I saved to buy pieces. It was love at first sight when I saw this Rochas dress. The detail is amazing: from cut-out back to the shoulders and the pleating on the skirt. It's elegant and timeless, but I also love that it can be dressed down with a cardigan or jumper and become a different outfit completely.

How does this dress embody your aesthetic? When you look at it from the front, it is very understated and the subtle detailing does the talking. But when you turn around, the back is sensational - super-sexy, but in a very elegant way. Adding the MoMuse necklace (worn backwards) adds a bit of intrigue and individuality, which I think every outfit should have.

How would you describe your personal style? My style is understated and elegant. Over the last year or so, since leaving the corporate world of LVMH, I have discovered a different and more relaxed approach to dressing. The wonderful world of coffee is a lot more relaxed and casual, and I am loving experimenting with more seperates, such as jeans, trousers, knits and jackets, but always keeping it chic.

What are your go-to labels? This is ever evolving. At present it's J Brand and MiH for jeans. J.Crew for knits. Design centre for little dresses. Costume for separates, Kotn T-shirts, Paula Rowan for gloves, Gianvito Rossi pumps, and Chanel ballerina flats. Plus, I have an amazing dress maker to ensure everything fits correctly.

Is jewellery and important part of your signature style? Yes, jewellery is very much part of my everyday life - rings, bracelets and necklaces in particular. As with clothes, I believe in investing in pieces that will last a lifetime and can be passed down through generations. I have a ring that has been handed down through three generations so far, and it's the most beautiful thing in the world to me.


Do you usually dress up over Christmas? I love to dress up while in Dublin meeting friends, but if we are in the west of Ireland, I prefer to go casual. I don't like to feel weighed down by clothes, so I adore cashmere, as it's warm and light. A good pair of boots and my scarf from Stable are also a must.

If you were to receive one fashion gift this season, what would it be? A surprise!

If you want to read more on My Perfect Party Piece with Marie Kelly, our December issue of IMAGE magazine is on shelves now.

Photographed by Patrick Bolger

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