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Fashion Inspired by Art: Dale Chihuly’s “Persian Ceiling”


This week in Fashion Inspired by Art, we’ll be discussing Dale Chihuly’s Persian Ceiling. Let’s kick off the beginning of summer break in style with outfits inspired by this beautiful and boldly colored installation piece. I hope you all enjoy!

Under the Glass: About Dale Chihuly’s “Persian Ceiling”

Chihuly persian ceiling triptych
Dale Chihuly’s Persian Ceiling at the VMFA (2012) | Click image to enlarge

Dale Chihuly (born 1941) is an American glass sculptor from Tacoma, Washington. His works are primarily done in the style of animal and botanical sea life forms, such as jellyfish and anemones. Over 200 museums worldwide count at least one Chihuly piece among their collections, and the artist has received numerous awards for his work.

I was fortunate enough to visit the VMFA while their exhibition Chihuly at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts was up, and the experience was truly amazing. (I took tons of pictures, I just couldn’t get enough!) There were many colorful works, but the most fantastic piece was the Persian Ceiling, a glass installation set overhead in a small walkway through the exhibition.

The most striking features of Persian Ceiling are its bright colors, intriguing shape placements, and sense of patterning. Many of the organic hemispheres are reminiscent of jellyfish, while other sea forms, such as mollusks and squid, can be picked out among the myriad of glass pieces.

If you’ve haven’t had the chance to experience a Chihuly exhibition, there are several currently ongoing on the west coast. If you’re travelling for the summer, I highly recommend adding one of his shows to your itinerary — it’s a sight that you won’t want to miss!

Outfits Inspired by “Persian Ceiling”

Patterned Pretty

Chihuly persian ceiling texture outfit
Top, Belt, Earrings, Clutch, Capris, Ring, Bracelet, Flats | Hair and makeup photo via ELLE

This outfit is all about texture — both physical and visual (actual surface variation and implied surface changes). The large, jellyfish-like forms in “Persian Ceiling” are striped, and the pleats in the yellow top and salmon-colored capris mimic their texture. The pattern on the orange bracelet, yellow shoes, and blue clutch reflect the implied texture of the smooth glass shapes.

Keep the circular geometric theme of the Persian Ceiling going with a geometric belt and matching teal ring and earrings, bringing in the cooler colors of the art. Finish the look off with textured waves and a braided “headband” for a chic, pulled together weekend look.

Undersea Siren

Chihuly persian ceiling undersea outfit
Ring, Bracelet, Dress, Nail Polish, Earrings, Wedges, Belt | Hair photo via ELLE

Channel the sea in this ethereal, mermaid-like look. Start with a pale seafoam-colored dress, which flows lightly over the body like early morning waves. Add some bold color to the look with a pair of comfy multi-colored wedges and a brown embellished belt. For a touch of the ocean, slip on a starfish ring, anemone bracelet, and jellyfish earrings.

Now it’s time for some extras. Paint your nails a bright blue for contrast and style your hair with a curling wand into mermaid waves. This look is perfect for a causal date or an outing with your girlfriends!

Unique Cutie

Chihuly persian ceiling unexpected place outfit
Blazer, Rings, Dress, Umbrella, Nail Polish, Earrings, Flats

Sometimes you find the most interesting things in the most unexpected places. Just as the beautiful glass installation is placed on the ceiling, the most interesting accessories are sometimes the most unexpected. Throw on a simple yellow sundress with a statement-making back. For a rainy day, an adorable set of waterproof flats and an official Chihuly Persian Ceiling umbrella with black exterior add some color.

Throw on a whimsical striped blazer and silver jewelry with a twist to add a feminine sense of fun to the look. Finish the outfit off with some blue-to-white speckled color-changing nail polish and you’re sure to stand out against the rainy gray skies of the summer transitional weather.

What do you think?

Have you seen or studied Chihuly or his work before? Do you like Persian Ceiling? What do you think about glass blowing? Do you enjoy the style of glass works? What do you think about the inspired outfits? Which one is your favorite? Let me know in the comments below, I’d love to hear your opinions!

Posted on on May 15, 2013 / Filed Under: Inspiration / Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

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5 Responses to “Fashion Inspired by Art: Dale Chihuly’s “Persian Ceiling””

  1. 1
    May 15th, 2013 at 7:43 pm

    I would absolutely wear any of these looks. So colorful and feminine. Going shopping right now haha

  2. 2
    May 15th, 2013 at 10:13 pm

    Love Chihuly! He’s kinda an icon in the Seattle area, and has a lot of beautiful work on display in Tacoma and Seattle where I went to hs and now college, respectively. Cute looks, esp. the first one!

  3. 3
    May 16th, 2013 at 1:33 am

    Yay! I’m from Tacoma! They have the glass bridge with tons of Chihuly glass sculptures, there’s Chihuly glass sculptures at the courthouse, and of course some at the Tacoma Art Museum. Downtown Tacoma is kinda Chihuly’d out, haha.

    Anyway, enough of my city pride, really cute outfits! I adore that mint dress :)

  4. 4
    May 16th, 2013 at 12:07 pm

    love chihuly! i went to the exhibit at the MFA multiple times & it was awesome. :D

    i kind of want that umbrella, though i wish instead of black, it was clear. how cool would that be?

  5. 5
    May 18th, 2013 at 6:46 am

    I love the earrings in the last outfit! I normally don’t wear a lot of color, but these Inspired by Art posts really have inspired me! These posts are my favorite on CF right now. Do more posts on this type of art! So many options for clothing inspiration!

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