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Janet Hill Talbert, 44
Book editor turned jewelry designer
This photo shoot marked the first day of the rest of Janet's life. (And we're not just talking vixenhood here.) After working as a book editor for more than two decades, she had quit her job to start her own jewelry business—and tonight was her going-away party. But first: a physical reinvention. "You're expected to look a certain way in the book industry. I never wear anything provocative; my hair is always back," Janet told our team, running a hand over her bun.

Ken let Janet's long hair fall loose around her shoulders. "Since her hair is relaxed, she needs to add back some curl and softness around her face and against her neck for a more sensual look," he explained, before setting her hair in two-inch Velcro rollers. He combed out the curls with his fingers and pushed them forward around her face. For extra body, Ken clipped in a hairpiece (from his line with Jessica Simpson, Hairdo) just below the crown of Janet's head, hidden beneath her top layer of hair.

After removing Janet's tortoiseshell glasses, Rebecca knew immediately where to direct her attention: "I'm going to play up these dreamy doe eyes." Her tools included a chocolate brown, gold-flecked shadow that complemented the honey tones in Janet's skin and a full fringe of fake lashes. When Janet strode onto our set in a clingy sequined gown, she was definitely ready for her close-up. We hardly recognized the buttoned-up bookish type we'd met that morning—and neither did she. "I can't believe that's me!" she said when she saw the first digital photos. After a few minutes, though, the come-hither arch of her back and tilt of her head looked so effortless, we knew the transformation had sunk in—it was her, all right. "Such a shame my husband's away on business tonight," she said, casting a playful look at the crew as she dashed out the door to her party.

Dress, Naeem Khan. Earrings, Elizabeth Locke.

Jenny Bailly


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