#245: Mel Ottenberg
Mel Ottenberg on Red Bull, The Club Scene In Klute (1971), The Killing Season, and more.
Cool people like cool things, which is why we asked Mel Ottenberg to share a taste of his taste on Perfectly Imperfect.
Mel Ottenberg is a New York City-based fashion stylist and the Editor-In-Chief of Andy Warhol’s iconic Interview Magazine. He’s styled huge stars like Rihanna and Justin Bieber, worked on campaigns for Dior, Nike, and Tom Ford, and even teamed up with Björk for her Vulnicura album cover. I, like many other people, am obsessed with Interview Mag’s candid conversation format and diverse range of subjects. One page will be two of the coolest people in the world casually shooting the shit, and the next, an up & coming talent chatting it up with an idol of theirs. It's all really well photographed and styled too, but that’s a given. Interview is a huge inspiration for this very newsletter, and lucky for us, Mel is here to tell us what he’s been into.
Without further ado
Mel Ottenberg (instagram)
📺 The Killing Season
Are you a true crime fanatic? If so, I recommend The Killing Season, a docuseries about LISK aka Long Island Serial Killer. Everything about LISK is a total freak out: the (unsolved) decades long killing spree, the lying doctor faking a heart attack in the parking lot, the cop with the dildos in the car, the belt with the initials on it, everything Shannan Gilbert, etc. I have more to say and wrote it all down here but I erased it to keep from getting whacked. PS what do YOU think happened to Shannan? Murder by the beach, or accidental death by the elements?!
🩲 Fruit of the Loom boxers
A well washed pair of plaid Fruit of the Loom boxer shorts is a hot look. Very “Roseanne” and very NOW. I buy mine at Dave’s, but you can get them wherever i guess.
🎥 Klute club scene
In the 1971 film Klute, life has call girl Bree Daniels (Jane Fonda) spiraling hard, so she jumps out of a moving car and runs to the after hours club, as one does. The place is popping, the Ann Roth costumes are perfect and as “Bree’s Abandon (Take It Higher)” blasts through the club, our heroine’s mood is dark. She makes out, falls down, hugs Candy Darling, finds her old pimp Frank (Roy Schneider!) and just lets her chaos flow. Bree’s shag haircut is one of the most important haircuts of the twentieth century and as it gets sweatier, shaggier and more incredible as the scene progresses, we witness Jane snatch that first Oscar win DOWN!
⚡️ Red Bull
Red Bull is amazing. The last time i went dancing i drank a dozen of them. Each one was flawless. I wish I had invented Red Bull. Original is great, but I usually go with Diet.
⛪️ Mary Magdalene in the Middle Ages
Mary Magdalene tore the Middle Ages UP with her luscious thick wavy hair that she grew to the ground and styled in various ways as her outfit. Sometimes Mary wore a belt to accentuate her waist, sometimes she just let it all flow free. It always worked. I fell for Middle Ages Mary when I visited the Sistine Chapel museum, a magical place. A LOOK TO TRY!
Do you know how HARD I worked for all those Limewire downloads??? Some songs literally took YEARS to download. Some of my prized possessions.
📺 Vanity 6
Why is Vanity 6 not streaming? JUSTICE FOR VANITY 6!!!!!!!!!! Thankfully I have my Limewire downloads.
In the nineties, Smylonylon was an incredible universe on Lafayette between Spring and Broome that sold deadstock seventies clothes and mixtapes by the DJ Alex Gloor. My favorite store ever. Smylonylon’s influence on fashion endures, and if you know you know. Long ago a great guy on the internet converted my Smylon tapes to MP3, and I’m down to trade mixes with other collectors. Im especially looking for Smylonylon 17, 20 and 25. I have Smylonylon 1, 4, 6, 18, 19, 21, 22, 23, 28 and 29, as well as Arkle & Sparkle and tynynyny 1 & 2. If anyone knows what I’m talking about, DM me.
🥔 Potato Latkes
Patato Latkes are iconic. A Hanukkah delicacy. Theyre really hard to make and can often be a disaster, but I recommend them passionately. My mom makes them really well. Eat them with sour cream and applesauce. HOT!
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