ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK: Wilson wears a Heather Huey turban hat and a Dior jacket and skirt.

How Dallas Dresses: Christen Wilson

Inspiration is everywhere for the art and fashion maven, and so is she — in London, Paris, and local galleries.

Good luck characterizing Christen Wilson. She’s an art collector, chair of the Nasher Sculpture Center’s advisory committee, and a member of the Tate Modern’s International Council. She’s involved with the Costume Institute at The Metropolitan Museum of Art and with the Frieze Art Fair in London and New York. She travels to Paris twice a year for the couture shows and fits in ready-to-wear fall and spring shows when time permits. Oh, and she’s married and a mother of three. 

“I balance travel, art, family, and fashion,” Wilson says, “and somehow I make it work.” (See how on her Instagram account, @christenslayer.) It must help that she’s combining two loves—fashion and art—“which are intersecting now more than ever.” She’s talking about collaborations from the likes of Aaron Curry and Rochambeau, and artist Alex Israel, whose Freeway Eyewear has a new line of sunglasses. 

Christen's Beauty Essential: MAC Lipstick in "Lady Danger," $16, MAC Cosmetics courtesy mac cosmetics
The connection is also alive at home. Wilson attended the Met Ball last year in a dress made from an artist-designer collaboration. Sterling Ruby worked with Raf Simons for Dior, Wilson’s favorite artist and designer respectively. “For me,” she says, “it is a unique art piece more than a dress.” 

Wilson is what she calls an emotional dresser, dressing based on how she feels. “It can be anything from an edgy, dark Comme des Garçons to a proper-lady Dior,” she says. “I think there is something amazing about all looks, if worn in a unique way.” 

She’ll also mix high with low, and loves high-tops and sneakers, anything denim, and hats. Lots of hats.

“Someone once told me that the best dressers are the ones that will take some chances,” Wilson says. “It usually works out.”