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Heaven, With Hangers

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1. Sui’s closet is organized by color. Every shoe box has a Polaroid of its contents. “I used to memorize the boxes—Prada was dark navy, Miu Miu was pink—but it got to be too many.”
2. As an homage to The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, Sui framed her closet door with an armoire, cut the back out, and put mirrors on the inside doors.
3. Just around the corner: papier-mâché dolly heads that Sui collected from eBay and flea markets.
4. Enter Here   

Anna Sui
Fashion Designer, Greenwich Village

What is the deal with your closet doors?
I had always loved The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and wanted my closet to open like that. So we cut out the back of an armoire and it leads into the walk-in.

Did you read the book as a little girl?
It was my favorite. My English teacher in sixth grade gave me an A-minus on my book report, and she said, “You have to start reading more adult books.” It broke my heart.

Did you follow her advice?
My next book was The Great Gatsby.

How long have you had this closet?
I bought the apartment on New Year’s Eve 1999. The guy was a prick. He called to say, “You have to buy it today or you can’t have it.”

Kids must love the closet.
Lisa Marie Presley came over with her kids. We were having a dinner party with tons of people, and the kids did a whole dance routine to “My Boyfriend’s Back.” They used the closet as a stage. We all sat on my bed and watched.

Do you decorate your closet?
There’s a stained-glass window and papier-mâché dolly heads, which I collect. I also have a geisha wig.

Do you ever wear it?
No, it flakes, but I love the shape. I saw it at the flea market but the woman was really crabby, so I didn’t buy it. I was like, “I don’t want to give you my $10.” Then I went back for a year, and finally she had it again.

Does everything fit?
I actually just bought a studio two floors up, which will be like another big closet. I knew I needed more space when the avalanches started. Things were falling on my head.


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