Power publicist Christina Juarez’s wardrobe philosophy is more is more, and less is a bore. Which is why the self-proclaimed “merch mama” called California Closets to organize her creative chaos.
Juarez wears a blue silk georgette mididress and cheetah bag by her friend Amanda Ross, whose collection, ARossGirl, is available on net-a-porter.com.
“I just love stuff ,” says Christina Juarez (cjandco.com) perched on her velvet sofa piled with patterned pillows. But it’s not just stuff. Everything in the Chelsea apartment of one of the city’s most in-demand publicists has a story. Juarez, who started her career in-house at Oscar de la Renta, says her eye is forever informed by the late designer’s endless appreciation for beauty. “Oscar was the king of everything color and bling.”
Not coincidentally, color and bling are the main themes of Juarez’s wardrobe. One that largely consists of vintage caftans, costume jewelry and enough Oscar de la Renta archival treasures she could alone host a retrospective in his honor.
A collector of many things, her haul of Larkspur & Hawk jewels shines among her montage of green glassware and beloved Manolo Blahniks.
“I grew up in the ’60s and ’70s in Westchester,” she says in defense of her penchant for poppy paint colors and wildly upholstered sofas. “During that time in suburbia, it was the pinnacle of chic to have a unique color scheme for each room. Since, I’ve never been afraid of color at home or in my wardrobe.”
Although Juarez’s apartment is considered large by New York City standards, the self-professed shopaholic has filled every inch with objects of curiosity and affection.
Vintage Native American turquoise jewelry is displayed alongside a Fornasetti candle and Voutsa watercolorprinted luggage.
“More is more; less is a bore!” she says with Diana Vreeland-like enthusiasm, adding that her friend, world-famous decorator Michelle Nussbaumer, would agree. “I love it, but some of my more minimalist friends come here and they break out in a rash. You can see the Marie Kondo types getting physically upset when they’re near my closet.”
Juarez’s husband and her co-workers, who often work from her maximalist pad, appreciate an ounce of organization. Luckily, Juarez is all for that and wasn’t afraid to call in the experts: California Closets.
Juarez piles on her favorite sparkly jewelry by Larkspur & Hawk.
“My closet was always just a jumble of bags, clothes and jewelry until my closet designer, Carolyn Musher from California Closets, changed my life,” she says with true gratitude. “Carolyn created organizational spaces within the same amount of space. Not only did she magically invent more space, she somehow simplified my life without making me sacrifice.”
Neon-pink knife-toed kitten heels by Balenciaga arranged atop favorite coffee-table tomes.
Before outfitting Juarez with the couture of closets, Musher interviewed her client about her real needs. “She asked me a lot of questions, like, ‘Do you wear all of your accessories?’” And to that Juarez replied, “I want to, but I can’t find them!”
The solution: Create special spots for everything she owned. “Carolyn said you need to see your accessories if you want to wear them,” Juarez says of the game-changing experience. Now, all of her necklaces are noticeably draped around mirrors and art pieces, and her large collection of earrings are in a divided clear bag that hangs in her closet.
Juarez’s custom closet by California Closets is supremely organized and ready to shop.
While every nook and cranny in Juarez’s pad is still packed, it’s now more of an organized chaos thanks to California Closets. “I’m a collector of everything—it’s just who I am,” Juarez admits with a smile. “My daughter Sofia will text me a picture from the flea market and be like, ‘Mom, do you want this merch?’ She jokes that no one loves merch as much as her mom.”
Photography by Kenny Chen