You've probably seen Salvador Perez's Emmy-nominated work on Mindy Kaling's hilarious The Mindy Project, or perhaps you caught it lighting up the silver screen this summer in Pitch Perfect 2. The costume designer's brilliant eye for outfits is no secret, and already it's earned him an ambassadorship with Casio Watches and partnerships with Express and Bauble Bar.
So, what's next for the character dresser and President of the Costume Designers Guild? For now, the Emmy nomination is making life pretty sweet. "It's icing on the cake," Salvador said. "I feel so lucky to have this as my job. Coming to work is a gift, and adding an Emmy nomination on top of it? I felt greedy!"
But don't expect the fall season to slow Mindy's style down one bit. Instead, take note of Salvador's award-winning style instincts as you stalk those end-of-summer clothing sales. Want to steal Mindy's trademark style for back-to-school cool? He says to focus on colors and patterns.
The prints available today are so much cooler than they used to be, Salvador said. But while a floral number may be your go-to, avoid the bland cookie-cutter pattern. "A repetitive floral is boring and matronly," he said. "The florals now are more organic and not the floral they were wearing 10 years ago."
And once you've got the right print palette down, select saturated shades in a wide array of layering pieces to capture Mindy's look. "It's very sweet, never overly sexy," he said. "A sweater vest over a skirt, very age-appropriate for anyone - even a 12-year-old daughter."
While Salvador counts Kate Spade, Tory Burch, Lela Rose and Oscar de la Renta among Mindy's fashion muses, cost-conscious fashion lovers can head to Express to find great clothing options, too. "Express always has great basics you can use," he said of the brand he partnered with to launch the Pitch Perfect 2 line. "A very great wardrobe has great staples: a blouse, a pencil skirt - Express had those staples. I could create characters with the pieces."
When can we expect a Dr. Mindy Lahiri-themed clothing line to shop ourselves? Not until Salvador finds the right business partner, he said, who can create the line's patterned blouses and colorful skirts at realistic prices. For example, a beautiful coat's 'authenticity' won't matter when it's accompanied by a $2,000 price tag, Salvador said.
"I need a partner that can produce the quality and understand the design aesthetic," Salvador said. "If I'm putting time and effort into it, it has to be right. It's a full-time job to design a line like that."
And when dressing for your job (whether it's that of a full-time student or office-bound worker), Salvador suggests imagining the day ahead of you when picking out your look. "On a TV show, it's dressing for a feeling. Like a costumer designer dresses for a scene, dress yourself for the day you're going to have."