Deal Diva Interview: Gloria Gaynor's New Year's style
Before you dash to the mall and grab the nearest sparkling minidress for New Year's Eve, listen to a professional.
Gloria Gaynor, the disco queen behind everlasting breakup anthem I Will Survive, has spent her career teetering on stage in heels, swathed by the light of a spinning glass ball while sporting a variety of glitter and baubles and bangles. And yet sometimes, when it comes to style, she says it's best to hold back.
Gaynor, 63, will perform Saturday at the Mahaffey Theater, alongside disco friends Sister Sledge and Maxine Nightingale. We called her at home in New Jersey to get her personal New Year's Eve fashion advice. She's got all her love to give, as long as it's in sturdy heels.
How do you normally spend New Year's Eve?
Well, if I'm not working, then I'm at home with family and friends, but normally I am working. I can be anywhere from China to Florida.
Are you a pajamas on the couch kind of person?
No, we usually have a little party, just laughing and talking over old times. We do watch the ball drop.
What's your New Year's Eve look?
My look is always glitzy for New Year's Eve, even if I am at home. I would probably wear black and some bright, glitzy color to go with it. Sequins and bugle beads and diamonds.
The disco era was glamorous. Did you partake in the style?
You know, my style is really kind of classic. Often when I see them doing the nostalgia stuff, I'm looking at the clothing thinking, "We did not dress like that." Well, some of them did, but I didn't. And if I did something that was trendy, it was something that was bound to last and come back. Like, I had those, you know, the ruched pants. I had those back in the 1970s.
What was your all-time favorite look?
What comes to mind was the fabulous gown that I had. It was metallic. I wore it on the Grammys when I won my Grammy. I was the only one that didn't have on sequins. I had to make up my mind whether I wanted to wear sequins or this gold muted print lame, and I was so glad I didn't wear sequins.
What designers do you like nowadays?
Well, for street clothes, a lot of what I wear is Jones New York. I am well-endowed in the derriere, and they can handle that. But I like Elie Tahari and Tadashi as well. They make stuff that fits me. You always like the styles of people who make stuff that fits you. And I like Dolce & Gabbana.
Products you swear by?
MAC. And (Olay) Regenerist.
How should people dress for your show?
Women, as glamorous as you possibly can, and guys, as chic as you possibly can.
What makes a guy chic?
A chic guy is in a suit. I don't care what kind of tie they wear. I don't care if they even wear a tie, as long as they can carry a suit.
What about heels? There will be dancing.
I recommend comfortable heels. Heels, absolutely, you gotta have heels. They don't have to be pencil thin and they don't have to be 6 inches high.
Between you, Sister Sledge and Maxine Nightingale, who would win a runway runoff?
To be absolutely fair to the ladies whom I love, I'd have to say it depends on the judge.
Deal Diva Stephanie
Photos: Times files