When it comes to fashion, there are few in Nashville who are more knowledgeable on the subject — or have better taste — than Janice Elliott Morgan. A buyer for Gus Mayer since 1992, Janice is responsible for bringing some of the biggest labels and designers to Nashville. A go-to boutique for high-end styles, Gus Mayer carries the collections of, among others, Carolina Herrera, Christian Siriano and Zac Posen, all of whom have visited Nashville personally as part of Gus Mayer’s partnership with the Symphony Fashion Show each spring. When it comes to fashion, Janice may be an expert, but she encourages others to trust their own instincts. “Don’t be a slave to trends,” she says. “Be true to your own personal style.” We chatted with Janice about her favorite designers, her biggest fashion faux pas and five staples that every woman should own.
Name: Janice Elliott Morgan
Profession/Title: Buyer for Gus Mayer
Hometown: Mayfield, Kentucky
Zip Code: 37027
Years in Nashville: 35 years
Number of gowns in your closet: 10
What are five staples every woman should have in her closet? A little black dress, a great blazer, a leather jacket, a great fitting pant and black pumps
What is one fashion trend you wish would go out of style? Men in pants with their rear showing
What are your favorite designers/brands to wear? Like a mother, it's impossible to choose my favorite child, but a few of my favorites are Zang Toi (who designed my wedding gown), Jason Wu, Carolina Herrera, Zac Posen [and] Monique Lhuillier.
Who is your favorite local fashion or accessories designer? Margaret Ellis, who was such a trailblazer and talent
If you could trade places with anyone for a day, who would it be? Anna Wintour on one of her nicer days!
What annual fundraising event do you look most forward to every year? Without question, the Symphony Fashion Show because it gives Gus Mayer a wonderful opportunity to give back. The fact that it benefits our award-winning symphony is a plus.
What was your biggest fashion faux pas? Wearing a Norma Kamali catsuit with gigantic shoulder pads — a look that we all loved in the '80s
Which Nashvillians have the best personal style? Those who are true to their own style and wear it with confidence
What is one luxury you can’t live without? Starbucks and Champagne — but not at the same time
For a quiet getaway, where do you like to go? For peace and quiet in Nashville, I love a long walk in Percy Warner Park. My favorite out-of-town quiet getaway is Blackberry Farm.
What’s the best new Nashville restaurant? The 404 Kitchen. With the new larger location, it's much easier to get a last-minute reservation.
When you have out-of-town guests visiting, where do you take them? I take our Gus Mayer guests to Table 3 in Green Hills for dinner.
What’s the best shop for buying a gift? Gus Mayer, of course
What’s the best fashion advice you’ve ever been given or would give to someone else? Don’t be a slave to trends; be true to your own personal style.