Closet expert and style maven Melanie Charlton Fascitelli has always had this thing about fashion and being organized.
And she's fairly certain where the influence came from.
"My mother, who was born and raised in Pittsburgh, was the great organizer and gave me my obsession with keeping things very neat and clean," she said. "My father was a dapper man who loved a beautiful suit and loved to buy me clothes."
After growing up under the roof of John and Katie Charlton, it's not surprising that Fascitelli would in 2002 establish Clos-ette, a closet-design company.
Now, the former Style.com editor and fashion public-relations consultant who lives in New York City has combined her organizational expertise and love of fashion in a new book intended to simplify dressing for men and women. "Shop Your Closet: The Ultimate Guide to Organizing Your Closet With Style" (Collins, $19.95) offers tips and techniques for editing and then organizing your wardrobe so that each time you dress you can do so by "shopping your closet."
But before getting down to brass tacks, Fascitelli deconstructs the pack-rat personality and helps readers understand and overcome the mind-set that causes them to rationalize the accumulation of things in this case, clothes while rarely, if ever, parting with what needs to go.
Aided by color illustrations and photos, the author lays out three phases of taking back your wardrobe that include editing and clearing out, organizing what's left into a timesaving system and remaining organized when new things invariably are added.
The beauty of Fascitelli's system is that it can be applied to other areas of living, such as medicine chests, kitchens, pantries, wine cellars and offices.
Wherever one decides to implement her strategies, she promises that the initial time investment will be worth the return."It's like anything else that takes a lot of work and time but will get you great results," she said. "Exercise and education, they take time, too. All good things take some time, but honestly, make the time, and the benefits will be so much greater."
Super shopping guide
The self-proclaimed "global shopping goddess" and the woman Oprah Winfrey dubbed "super shopper Suzy" has a new book that aims to help people shopping anywhere in the world.
"Suzy Gershman's Where to Buy the Best of Everything: The Outspoken Guide for World Travelers and Online Shoppers" (Wiley, $19.99) catalogs what Gershman considers the best retailers flea markets, grocers, architectural salvage yards, textile stores, online companies, etc. from America to Amsterdam. It's complete with addresses, phone numbers and other contact information.
Aside from details on nearly 1,000 stores and brands at all price levels, the globetrotting journalist tosses in a number of fun features such as the best eight airports for shopping, how to avoid 10 shopping scams and the top U.S. design districts.
This is a book that frequent travelers would appreciate as much as shopaholics.