I grew up in London and as a child, we had an au pair who insisted that I read a book a day. Growing up I had really amazing female role models to watch like Madonna, Lady Gaga, Amy Winehouse and Lilly Allen, which meant style was just in the air that I breathed.
Living in London I soaked up all its style references subconsciously, I also had places like Borough (food) Market on my doorstep where I would go after school and at weekends.
Back then a world I only had access to through the pages of magazines was fashion. For me fashion was all about styling and creating your own identity then, it wasn’t such a huge commodity as it is now.
Fashion is not just about labels and trends. To me it has a much deeper, meaningful resonance that links identity, culture, craft and commerce. Unfortunately, it’s become part of the entertainment machine which is cynical and money grabby and that makes it seem très superficial.
What I seem to be living in now is 501s. I love Nike and I just bought a Charlotte Olympia feline bag. Plus, a pair of silver toned plimsolls to go with my 501s. And a top from Zara.
Zara is my go-to store period, Whistles for coats and Levi’s for jeans. Reiss and Topman are my secret sources for classic boys’ bits. For more unique things I go mooching around Spitalfields and Golborne Road thrift markets with an open mind and a beady eye.
I really believe in bargains. A bargain to me is something I’ll have for a long time and will get lots of wear from. I’m not into throwaway fashion but I like high street brands like Zara and Gap for affordable, well designed pieces with longevity.
The challenge now is to keep evolving so that you’re ahead of the game while keeping your independence as much as possible.