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Perfectly Suited : Dana Delany in Serenely Elegant Two-Piece Outfits

September 25, 1988|Bettijane Levine | Bettijane Levine is The Times' fashion editor

Attractive new clothes aren't part of the wardrobe that Dana Delany wears as army nurse Colleen McMurphy on ABC-TV's "China Beach." But in real life, Delany says, she's a stickler for finding "the perfect little outfit" to take her anywhere in style. These days, perfection is likely to be found in the new crop of suits and two-piece dresses surfacing for fall. It's a mood of matched glamour, a pulled-together look that's organized, polished and enduring--unlike the froufrou styles of late. The ideal for Delany, as for many women on the move, is a suit or dress with jacket that is wearably slim, elegantly carved and perhaps somewhat reminiscent of the era when women wore "polite" white gloves and dramatic hats. Petite and impeccably groomed, the actress was raised in Stamford, Conn., studied drama and won acclaim in New York theater before coming West to find roles in TV and films such as "Moon Over Parador" and "Patty Hearst." Delany was delighted with the precision cut of these suits and with their subtly feminine flourishes: black satin bows on tailored black denim or lace shaped into a curvy, off-the-shoulder evening suit.

Hair and makeup: Franco Felice/Cloutier; stylist: Joanna Dendel; assistant stylist: Eddie Fernandez; location: the Beverly Hills Hotel

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