By Tracy Donohue, Photo by Daniel Lippitt
With a background in music and an appreciation for all things artistic, Northville resident Raffaella Medora-Naurato expresses her passion for fashion through her fashion consulting business, Raffaella Moda. The Italian-born fashionista also teaches her native language at Wayne State University where she instills in her students the fine Italian tradition of “bella figura” – portraying your best image to others.
How would you describe your personal style?
I believe clothing is more than just a superficial covering of the body and can send strong messages about how we feel that day, where we are going,and what we are going to do. My look changes depending on the day. One day I’m wearing a suit, and the next day I’m wearing motorcycle boots.
I consider myself elegant and polished, but also eclectic. I love good quality classics, but I also wear trends. I love accessories, since you can totally change an outfit with the right accessories – hats, evening bags, shoes, scarves, necklaces,and lots of vintage pieces, including some vintage items from my mom. It is important to create your own style and not try to imitate others.
I admire trends and look at designers for inspiration, but I don’t like to become like everyone else – I need to add my personal touch. I also believe one should always dress appropriately as a way to show respect to other people and yourself.
Who are your favorite designers?
I love art in general and enjoy the artistic side of clothes. To me, clothes express the history, the emotion, the society, the culture. Fashion is a form of art, and I enjoy everything that is beautiful and fabulous.
I like looking at the artistic creations from designers such as Charlotte Olympia, Nicholas Kirkwood, Alexandre Vauthier, Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana, John Galliano, Marc Jacobs, Casadei and Brian Atwood, but in reality I don’t have a favorite brand or label. Beautiful is beautiful regardless of the designer, and I tend to shop for what I like.
I shop everywhere, especially vintage and little boutiques both here and in Italy, and like unique things, such as the salmon pink palazzo pant I bought recently in Italy. Describe the outfit you wore for your photo session. I think monochromatic is always the most glamorous combination, and I like the delicate ivory color with the addition of just the right accessories. The full skirt is always a romantic choice, and this one is from Nilika. I bought the ivory blouse in Italy and used a belt from my closet. The scarf has been in my closet for 20 years and was a gift. It gave the outfit some color and added a chic touch. The bracelets are vintage from Chi-Chi and the Greek, and the watch is Michele and was a gift from my husband.