Gallerist Carrie Secrist Has One of Chicago's Coolest Closets

By Heidi Mitchell | April 8, 2019 | People Feature


Step into the closet of Carrie Secrist.

carrie-secrist.jpgPhoto by Colleen Durkin

She dresses only to enhance her mood, but gallerist Carrie Secrist nonetheless always turns heads. When she’s not hanging priceless new acquisitions in her signature overalls (“I own 20 pairs”), the 5-foot-10 blonde is walking the aisles of EXPO or Art Basel in vintage finds, seriously quirky Dolce & Gabbana dresses and always comfortable shoes. “I was a dancer for 20 years, so I can’t wear heels anymore,” she says, running her fingers through her shorn, towering mop.


What dominates your closet? Sweaters—including the Calvin Klein Looney Tunes limited-edition Road Runner one she wears constantly—and others in gold lame, pink fuzz and sky-blue leather.

Most unique piece: “My Dolce & Gabbana cat dress. My husband, Bill, saw it on the runway last year and tracked it down. I wore it to the EXPO opening.”


If you could swap closets with anyone: Probably Grace Kelly. The 50-year-old Secrist has a closet of old-Hollywood glamour looks, and had the Princess of Monaco’s dress from Rear Window copied by her tailor at Golden Needle.“I thought it was the most perfect dress ever.”

Local shopping spots: When Blake gets something new in that screams “Carrie,” the shop will call. “My like-minded stylist there, Melissa Gurvey, will whip together a unique pairing of fantastical elements... almost like she’s packing a magic wand.” Her closet is awash in Dolce, Dries, de la Renta and kooky vintage pieces like Dean Martin’s tuxedo pants.


Wardrobe staple: Along with those overalls, Secrist dons designer trainers by Adidas for daily wear, and always her chunky John Fluevogs for fancier appearances.

Fave item: The Dolce day coat she purchased while working as an intern at the Whitney Museum in New York, more than 25 years ago.

Personal style in five words or less: “Grandma funk.”


Categories: People Feature

Step into the closet of Carrie Secrist.