Sartorial Lit: Delirium by Lauren Oliver

Sartorial Lit is a new feature at Novel Days that combines fashion with fiction.

Delirium by Lauren Oliver, is about a girl named, Lena, who lives in a world quite similar to our own, but with one difference...Love has become the fatal disease, Amor Deliria Nervosa, with a cure that all citizens are expected to undergo when they turn 18. Lena is excited for her own cure...until she meets, Alex, and experiences this troublesome force called Love for the first time.

Delirium has had my mind in the clouds! I've thought of revolutions and serendipitous meetings that make you want to conquer the world. It made me wonder what it would be like to live in a world where, Amor Deliria Nervosa, is cured, and one must experience love, music, and pretty much anything that produces a strong sentiment, underground. As much as this could be problematic, think of the adventure that this could pose? Secret concerts, discussions of banned literature, long walks in the woods, galaxies of glowing stars waiting for you and your soulmate, with the threat that it could all vanish with the slip of the tongue. As crazy as it seems, it also seems beautiful if you know where to look.

Romance can imbue your ways of life. It can cloud your mind, stain your books, or flow through your wardrobe with pastels, neutrals, and strong bursts the color of wine. After being inspired by the novel, I decided to attempt to give you a sartorial interpretation of Delirium.

Etsy designer, River of Romansk, has perfectly captured my experience of Delrium. Taking in the beauty that Lauren Oliver describes of Portland: glowing sunsets, stars so close you can reach up and place them in a bottle, and the whisper of love, I thought that neutral or soft colored fabric would be lovely. Wispy fabrics that undulate in the wind, with delicate details offering just a touch a femininity and the wonder of change. I imagine Lena as a natural beauty who's presence comes into shape with the passage of time. I can imagine she and Alex having a meeting in one of these gorgeous garments.

Where the garments would imbue a kind of romantic chimera, I thought that with the novel's many layers, the accessories would be more edgy to showcase the threat of the government's rule.


These beautiful accessories give a hint of edge without going overboard. The necklace and earrings retain the theme of a light and airy chimera. The ring and bracelets show the beginnings of an edgy rebellion. All choices retain their delicate nature, but they also have a touch of dissonance that reeks of a silent rebellion.
Sartorial Lit

I imagined that nail varnish and makeup would give this style an edgier quality. Instead of being completely romantic by adding creme's, I thought that metallics, dark burgundy's, browns, or violets, lighter grays and other deeper colors would give this style a drama that would enhance a natural look with the aura of discovery.

With the natural terrain explored throughout the novel: booties, combat boots, and flats would finish off this Delirum style.  I thought that these selections made for a truly eclectic outfit, blending romance and weathered styles. Nothing delicate here, as anything can happen at any moment. Yet, it's still imbuing a feminine beauty.

Delirium is potentially a wealth of outfit inspiration, and I would love to hear your suggestions. If you were living a romantic adventure tinged with mystery, and threatened by penalty of death, how would you translate this into style?

Sources: Brushes used in photo collages by: Stardixa.