Wednesday, October 17, 2012

St-eye-lista Part 1

The St-EYE-lista
Welcome to our bi-monthly column "The St-EYE-lista!" This column will feature an individual whose personal style captured our EYE and whose fashion sense can be reinterpreted for the modest dresser. This month our featured St-EYE-lista is the hip Alexa ChungAlexa Chung is a former British model, has her own talk show, and has hosted a fashion design TV show called the "24 Hour Catwalk." 
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         It may be the understatement of the year to simply say that “I like Alexa Chung’s style.” “Obsessed or “fixated” might be more apropos. Seriously. I envy Alexa’s ability to look simultaneously disheveled and posh. She can appear at a fashion event with indifferently styled hair and a devil-may-care t-shirt but still parade around in towering patent heels and a sequined skirt.  Alexa's personal style also includes a “tomboy-meets-Lolita” dimension. She tends to cross masculine tailoring or tomboy nonchalance  (think blazers or combat boots) with a sweetly girly item (such as a Peter-Pan collar or flouncy skirt).
         Alexa has taken her personal style savvy into profitable business ventures as well. She designed a collection for Madewell, fronted campaigns for Superga and Maje, and even had a Mulberry schoolboy satchel named after her. Taking advantage of her “It” girl likability and fashion sense, Alexa has recently begun designing for her brand new clothing collection (We don’t have the details on it yet…but it’s already getting us "Alexacited.")
Check out Alexa’s personal style trademarks below!
Peter Pan Syndrome
It seems to be that Ms. Chung has gotten a chronic case of Peter Pan Syndrome. Well, Peter Pan Collared Syndrome to be more precise. I truly fancy this particular fall trend and all the retro bookishness attributed to it. Enjoy experimenting with different textures and patterns on the collars: Lace, studded, polka-dots...The choices are plenty. Layer it under a sweater for extra warmth and geek chic perfection.
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Alexa shows off her Style Cred by wearing a Peter-Pan Collared top in two different ways:
1) She contrasts the retro feel of a collared dress with trendy Superga sneakers. I love this modern, gamine take on a girly dress.
2) Alexa exudes British elegance by layering a sweater over a collared shirt and pairing it with a flared skirt and pointy-toe shoes. This outfit is too charming for words.
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Little Miss Ironic
Alexa’s style is often a reflection of her British quirk, sarcasm, and down-to-earth personality. Make an ironic statement by pairing a playful graphic tee with a flared skirt and edgy booties.
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You can wager that Alexa will take a once predictable outfit and quirk it up a notch.
She has that "rebellious teacher who defies the strict Principal's rules and takes her students on that darn field trip anyways," kind of look with these outfits on. Love it.

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What's the foolproof formula for looking Alexa Chung-esque and undeniably rad? Dress down formal pieces (like an off the shoulder sheath with a button down) or a glittery skirt with a chambray shirt. Go for a dash of daring and boylike swagger! That's right. You will swagger when wearing these kinds of outfits. You have been warned.

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Check out Alexa's red oxfords! Holy chic! An oxford's studious and mannish look has always appealed to me. They are like the ballet flat's quirky, geeky, and lovable cousin.
Consider pairing your oxfords with a twirly skirt. It's the golden standard of the "Girl meets Boy" trend.
  Vintage Charmer
Are you a vintage aficionado? Do you eye peplum, flared 1950's skirts, and polka-dots with yearning? Then, my dear reader, thou art in good company with Alexa. Alexa clearly has a penchant for demure vintage clothing. Does that contradict her otherwise rumpled, boyish aesthetic? Oh yes...very much so. But, isn't that what makes her personal style, er, fascinating? Well, surprising people with one's clothing choices is always fascinating (at least to me).

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Alexa once stated the following: "I find it very hard to dress head to toe in a feminine, glamorous look. I like girly, but then again, more like 'a little girl.' I'm not very good at dressing 'womanly.'"
The above photos of Alexa's sweetly polka dotted dress, collared shirts, and school-girl jumpers are prime examples of her unpretentious and nostalgic version of "pretty." Under the glaring lights of Hollywood's skimpily clothed celebrities, Alexa's PS (personal style) is unapologetically youthful and refreshing.
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Alexa just seems like that uber-cool friend who’ll introduce you to the latest Indie bands and who'll backpack to New Zealand on a whim. A Williamsburg hipster? Probably. Completely awesome? Definitely.
Peter Pan Collars, Oxfords, Chambray, and Vintage aside, THE key to mimicking Alexa's eclectic and admirable style is --dun, dun, dun--confidence. Heard of that? Splendid. The whole "confidence is beauty" mantra IS cliche, but who ever said that cliches aren't unadulterated truths?
So, go on. Tousle your tresses, zipper your twirly skirt, and slip on those rebellious are now a "Tomboy who meets Lolita," and you are fabulous.

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