Barbara Walters

updated 09/19/1994 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 09/19/1994 AT 01:00 AM EDT

You think you have trouble getting ready for work in the morning? Consider the strict dress code that Walters imposes on herself: No white ("it reflects light"), no necklaces ("they rattle"), no pins ("they shine"), no pants to interview heads of state ("not respectful") and only neutrals for prison chats ("I don't want to stand out"). All the more amazing, then, that the celebrated newscaster, 62, consistently looks not just presentable but smashing. On the job and off, she chooses classic clothes that flatter her curves and dazzlingly bright colors. "When I think of Barbara and color," says Oscar de la Renta, one of her favorite designers, "I think red." It's practice that has made her perfect. "I'll never forget the awful mouse-colored coat I bought in college because I thought red would be too flashy," says Walters. "You have to know who you are before you know how to dress."

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