Jenny Bagert

And Her Love Of Flared Pants

Jenny Bagert strolled into a book signing at the Garden District Book Shop looking like the poster girl for bell bottom pants. A vivacious woman with a thick mane of dark wavy hair, she made quite an entrance wearing her flared pants and a multi-colored top. When asked if she had more bell bottoms at home, she stood up straight to make her less than five-foot stature seem as tall as a model on the cover of Vogue Magazine, and answered: “Yes, I do; I have many pairs of flared bottom pants.” Then she quickly pointed out that her love of the classic bell bottom encompasses much more: “It is all about the flare and the flare is never too big for me.”

When Jeff Strout, the photographer on assignment to take Jenny’s photo, arrived at her 1890 corner-store-cum-office-and-home and found part of her collection draped on the seat and back of the couch, not to mention totally covering the floor in front of the coffee table and the table, the message was clear: Jenny’s style of wearing flared pants knows no boundaries.

A serious business woman who owns Jenny Bagert Consulting, where her clients are artists, galleries and private collectors, her business offers business and project management in fine art photography.

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“We are basically a one stop shop for small business owners in the field of photography, with services including collection and systems management, business organization, financial and administrative management, estate planning, curatorial services, product development and collection strategies, and mentorships.” She feels small business owners frequently struggle with having access to the broad range of professional services needed to achieve success and minimize headaches. “For photography-related businesses, we are the solution. I feel very lucky to work in both the art and business worlds, which satisfies two very different parts of me.”

Jenny is quick to point out that she has serious pants to wear for business interviews: “It just means some of my pants I wear when contacting certain clients are only slightly flared.” Then she picks up a pair of jeans that are seriously flared and obviously too long for her. “Actually, the point is to buy the jeans too long and then when they get frayed from dragging them on the grounds and stained from sometimes getting them wet on a muddy sidewalk, I cut the bottom seam off and have a perfect pair of frayed, wide leg pants,” she continues. “I have two separate wardrobes: one for my business pants and the other for my funky and fun ones.”

A native of New Orleans, Jenny says that one of the joys of living in such an all embracing city is that you are encouraged to relish your individual style. “We definitely are not a one-style-fits-all kind of town, and that’s why we have many places to purchase vintage or thrift store recycled clothes.” If there is any doubt about the popularity of bell bottoms or flared pants, one look on Google will reveal pages of outlets to purchase every kind of the unique pants. A minute on the internet will give you many choices to purchase your flared pants from Nordstrom to Ebay, and Forever 21 to JC Penney. There is a price range for all budgets, from Marc Jacobs flared pants that are advertised for $1,675, to Rose Wholesale where there are several styles you can order for under $10.

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Jenny has never been concerned if flared pants are in style.

“They have always been in style for me,” she says. Currently flared pants are very much in vogue, with Harpers Bazaar, one of the style Bibles, recently featuring a layout of the style and writing: “Flared pants are enjoying an unexpected moment in the spotlight.”

Jenny shares her Mid-City home with Dave Sobel, her husband, a rolfer and drummer, who plays with several local groups, and Hawkins Hart, their six-year old son, who attends Lycee Francais de la Nouvelle Orleans, a French immersion school. “Mid-City is the place to live,” Jenny says. “It’s the best of all worlds in New Orleans because it is convenient to everything and it is a wonderful eclectic, self-contained neighborhood. We love that part of our home was once a corner store, where past owners always lived in the back of the store. There are still many existing buildings in our neighborhood that were once corner stores.”

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Then Jenny holds up a one of her favorite pair of jeans and says with a smile. “I think I’ll wear these jeans with a serious wide flare for one of the photos. They are definitely in my funky collection. I like to wear pants that make me happy; life is too short to wear ordinary pants.”



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