Somewhere in fantasy world, Blair Waldorf is gasping for air. Eric Daman, Gossip Girl's stylist extraordinare, has taken on a side project. He's the new consulting creative director for San Diego-based mall staple Charlotte Russe. The retailer's having some financial difficulties (surprise!), but instead of panicking they're throwing all of their weight into tightening their brand strategy and targeting a slightly wider market, sixteen to twenty-nine year olds. Daman was brought in by their new president, who happens to be a Barneys vet, to help transform the stores into something more Bendel's than Forever 21. If anyone can do that with Charlotte Russe product, it's probably Daman who must have a teenage girl's brain tucked into his own. "The idea is to make girls feel better about shopping at the mall," he says. Does this mean we'll finally have to go to the Manhattan Mall?
Eric Daman, Gossip Girl's One Redeeming Quality, Solves Your Dating Dillemas
While the quality of Gossip Girl’s plot lines may be diminishing (Dan has a baby? Really?), the quality of the show's wardrobe is definitely stable. With the tour de force that was Serena and Blair’s summer in Paris, it might even be getting better. This is all thanks to Eric Daman, who might have the best job in the world. I mean, he gets to dress Chuck Bass. Following two of Gossip Girl’s strongest episodes to date (fashion-wise), we spoke to Eric about his amazing day job, Taylor Momsen, the only show he went to during fashion week, and his latest gig with Match.com providing first date outfit advice, some of which he was nice enough to share with us. (And FYI--if you want a free 7-day Match.com trial, click here) What qualifies Daman for such a job? He draws an interesting comparison: “Like TV, most of your date will be from the waist up.” (He recommends “something sparkly” like a necklace or earrings to decorate the oh so important above-the-waist area.) Whether or not your first date involves run-ins with Lou Doillon and balls with French dignitaries, there is no one better suited than Eric to dole out sartorial advice. His first words of wisdom? “Guys love shoes as much as girls do,” Eric insists, citing a poll that suggests a majority of men prefer that their date wear heels. However, he doesn’t necessarily want all girls to dress like Blair Waldorf on the first date. Being yourself, and reflecting that with your attire, is more important. “I think women don’t know to listen to themselves enough. Their inner voice is their best friend. I think its best to always be firm about who you are, because that's who you want to project and who you want the person across the table to fall in love with.” Still, we want to know, what would Blair wear on a first date?