For the Love of Style

by Amanda Bedgood

A fashion-forward duo finds love and a few hot looks. A fashion-forward duo finds love and a few hot looks. By Amanda Bedgood | photo by robin may

Friday, Feb. 1, 2013

The Berthelots are a stylish duo. Ben in a dapper suit, Ashley in a trendy ensemble and both en vogue in a way that's less Barbie and Ken and far more about personality. Neither dress in a way that is rote. Both practice style that is traditional with a wink. Like the day we met up with the couple in their newly renovated home. Ashley wore a pair of skinnies on those killer legs topped with an on-trend chevron top and for her wink to the fun side - a mint statement necklace and more gold jewelry. Ben struck a pose in an understated suit. But when we asked about his notoriously bare ankles we found a funky pair of socks that are just as entertaining (if not more so) than those well-known sockless feet.

So, how has married life changed these style lovers? They both claim not much at all. (They have, however, been wearing a lot of sweats as they do much of the renovation on their new home.) Except for those socks that have found their way into Ben's wardrobe. As it turns out, Ashley is often responsible for supplying those wildly-hued socks. Proof that even the most stylish men can be improved by a stylish woman's touch.

Who/What are your style inspirations?
Ben: My grandfather, Harry Greig, was always dressed sharp. I think that influenced me. And my dad Barry has a great suit collection that got me started right out of college before I could afford my own.

How would you describe your approach to dressing and personal style?
Ashley: I like classic cuts, colors and lines. I try to make the look trendy with accessories, jewelry and pops of color. I also watch for proportion and balance to an outfit regarding overall fit and my body type. I also hate shopping for a particular event. It stresses me out. I prefer to shop when I am in the mood, and buy clothes that I love. The right occasion always seems to just pop up.
Ben: Just like in baseball, sometimes you have to throw the curve. I throw a lot of curves.

Do you have a signature color or piece?
Ashley: I have a closet full of black and white. My neutral palette to create any look I want.
Ben: No socks.

Any fashion addictions?
Ashley: Closet full of jewelry I get bored with pieces after a few months. I am a sucker for jewelry in the store; the shiny sparkle just calls to me.

How has married life changed your style?
Ashley: I probably take more chances. I have more confidence in my body and fashion choices. I also have a "guy" to bounce it off of before I walk out the door. And it also doesn't hurt to have a little extra money to go toward those fashion choices, to buy better quality clothes, that I couldn't afford as a single gal living on my own.
Ben: We've been remodeling a home, so a lot more sweats with paint on them.

What are you loving right now in the world of fashion?
Ashley: I really like the skinny pant leg. I believe it is a much more slimming and tailored look than boot cut styles.

Any predictions on what you'll be living in this spring?
Ashley: I like layers with varying textures/prints. I want to have a cute basic outfit and pile on cardigans, scarves, jewelry, etc. Also good for typical South Louisiana weather, chilly in the morning, sauna by 2 in the afternoon.
Ben: Hopefully a lot of golf shorts and shirts with a cool belt. And on the work side, light colored suits with a bold tie.

Most memorable fashion moment of your relationship?
Ashley: Early in our courtship, we did a fundraiser fashion show together. Of course Ben was put in the "out there" outfit, which he rocked. I wore this beautiful red and black dress (some of my favorite colors) and gorgeous jewelry the real stuff. That was so much fun to participate as a couple.
Ben: I recall she looked stunning in that beautiful red dress with her hair up.

Anything you simply will never ever wear?
Ashley: Anything that creates "muffin top." It is a pet peeve of mine. If it doesn't look good in that particular area, I am not wearing it. But, if I happen to have a smidge of it, I will camouflage it with a flowing top.
Ben: Jean shorts. Not my thing.

Favorite quality in your partner?
Ashley: He never veers far from "who he is." He isn't swayed by what people do and/or say since he is comfortable with himself and his values. This life statement also applies to his fashion choices. Traditional because that "is what you wear" or "how you wear it" is not in his closet. There will always be a small element of his outfits that you can only say, "well, that's Ben."
Ben: She loves me unconditionally despite my faults. And she is very unselfish. Always thinking about others first.

If not you, who would you be?
Ben: I love my life, and I've been extremely blessed.

Natural talent you'd love to have?
Ashley: I wish I was more talented with eye makeup. There are so many cool things to do with eyes, but I am a bit intimidated. And then I also have a problem with it staying on. Still working on that.
Ben: Wish I were a better piano player. Note to the younger ones: Even though piano lessons may not be all that fun now, you'll wish you kept at it when you are older.

I love it when my partner wears ...
Ashley: A good fitting suit with interesting shirt/tie color choices. He likes looking dapper, and I like looking.
Ben: Anything that shows off her legs. She's got great legs.