Monday, August 11, 2008

Interview with Fashion Star Daisy Lewellyn

Read on while Fashionalities gets fashionly-candid with style star, Daisy Lewellyn that has moved from the fashion magazine world of New York to running her own fashion world in LA!  Get insider tips and get to understand how someone can really do it in the fashion world.  

1.  What are your fashion recommendations for fashion this Summer?
So every girl has to have an amazing LWD.  The LWD is the ultimate effortless chic piece!  I have about 16 and want more more more!!! I also am obsessed with a great statement necklace.  Kenneth Jay Lane is a wonderful designer who just gets it.  There is something about wearing an amazing ridiculously oversized yummy necklace!  It screams effortless luxe at a fraction of a huge price tag!  
- What are the key pieces?  
Girls have to identify their personal style & run with it!  I feel like before you even attempt to shop or hire a stylist, you must identify with your personal style.  There are so many fashion muses, and well so many imitators.  The imitators tend to make me a bit nauseous.  So every girl must have her statement piece that she adores & practically sleeps in, bathes, in, prays, in, & lives in.  Perhaps an oversized tote, a humongous rock candy cocktail ring, or a fantasticly jeweled flat.  Notice I am a bit obsessed with anything oversized & dramatic lol.  But always done in good taste.  So once she goes for that item, I think every girl should score a mini for summer.  I am absolutely shocked that I am saying this because I was not always a huge  fan of the mini, but I have been converted.  There are just soo many options, for my rocker Rihanna types, there's your fitted neoprene denim number, or for my romantic girls, why not embrace a belted full cabbage rose printed mini, I could go on & on.  The mini is just a must have for any lovely who deems them self as being any kind of cool.  Oh also I am a firm believer in being a sun kissed bronzed bombshell during the summer & well beyond.  Tanned skin =well it just = joy!  Pair sun kissed skin with your LWD & you are truly cover worthy.  And yes I am a true LA girl in the sense that I don't go anywhere without my shades!  I am not a label snob, but absolutely a shape snob!  Choose your lane & stick to it, Aviator Drive, Jackie O Blvd., or Ray Ban Road.  There really is no other way to go this summer.
-Where should someone search to find these looks?
Well, I love to mix mix mix!  High end & low end, designer & vintage, kids & granny!  A good place for every girl or guy, even kids really to start is a good H&M, I say this because once you are over the trend, you can toss it without feeling married to the item from the guilt having spent half of your rent money.  Also I love the dress department at Saks!  My fave dress designer is Tracy Reese, so she is always a plus!  For my NYC girls, throw on your flats & roam the Meatpacking District for good finds.  For my online girls, I like, Nordstrom, & Net a Porter, Topshop too!
2.  What are your fashion styling secrets?  i.e. personal styling books, how you organize your closet, etc.
Hmm, lets see, well for starters, I believe in mixing & matching.  Whenever I style a celeb, after my showroom pulls, I always call on a dear friend Love Collins.  Shes a great designer w/ a mean vintage accessories collection.  She always has the right piece!  She does rentals & has saved the day for many stylists.
I also have been a belt babe for, well basically forever!  I believe every girl should have a belt wardrobe & this is a sure fire way to always save the day!
I also believe in day to night looks, all day!  Shop for your lifestyle & dress that way!  If you are a social butterfly, don't wait until after 6pm to pull out your party shoes!!! Heavens to Betsey no!  Dress for your lifestyle always!
3.  How did you get started in the fashion industry?  
I went to Howard University, in Washington, DC.  I heard that there was an exchange program with FIT in NYC.  I jumped at the chance & knew this was exactly the way that I wanted to spend my junior year, as a NYC girl!!! Well I did go to NYC & FIT for my junior year, but the program was officially over.  I was so determined to go to NYC, you could not tell me no, even if the computers weren't accepting the entry lol.  I had my father sit in with me on a few meetings & I was headed for NYC.  Sooooo, I majored in Accessories Design at FIT & interned at a magazine called Honey Magazine.  It was a really cool & hip mag at the time!  I worked directly under the Fashion Director Sydne Bolden, who is to this day like a big sister.  I was the intern, but really the assistant, the errand girl, whatever they needed I did it with a smile since the department was sooo small.  I always thought, well I will be a celebrity stylist, it sounded fabulous & glamorous.  But once I was exposed to the magazine world, I shifted my fashion goals to a huge obsession with becoming an editor!  A fashion editor does many things that a stylist does, but more.  After I graduated from college at Howard, I made a mad dash back to NYC without looking back.  I called Sydne & she asked me to come help her In Style Magazine!!!! I felt like I had won the free!!! "Are you kidding???!!!" I thought to myself.  It was just too good to be true.  And that's how I got my first paid fashion job, at In Style.  Notice I said paid, since many kids don't understand that just because you're not getting paid, does not mean it isn't a job.  I took every job super duper seriously & always dressed the part!!! I think I was so paranoid from being blacklisted because of a chipped nail, or wrong trend, that I tried my hardest.  Oh boy that makes me laugh.
4.  Did you ever think you would go from fashion magazines to running the show in your own business?
Hmm, I don't really know, I suppose so.  I always just knew that fashion was a place where I felt really comfortable.  I have always adored fashion.  During my high school days I was obsessed with Clueless.  I started a huge Clueless Club & started this major fashion revolution at my school!  I have always been an independent go getter & an entrepreneur. Even while working at Glamour, I planned social events for clients from YSL, Louis Vuitton, In Style, & more.  So I have always had a knack for being a leader.  I have always been blessed with a great creative side, and super in love with my career!  I have had tough bosses, who were super strict, which in turn made me super anal, and meticulous about every little detail.  I thank them for the strict training, because I am the same way with my assistants, as well as with myself.
5.  What do you offer at your company?
Wow, we are kind of like a Target!  No matter what aisle you go down, there is something new, & something really fun!  I just love Target.
Well for starters, I am a TV Personality, so I do a lot of on air makeovers & offerings of fashion & beauty advice.  I also do red carpet & event commentating, as well as reporting & writing. I am a stylist on many levels, for fashion shows, celebs, and even children.  I also do a lot of style coaching & training & speaking engagements.  I host events with different partners for launch parties.  I have also, recently opened my doors to private clients.  We do closet makeovers, bridal & prom styling, special occasion prep, makeover parties, & more!  I also do a lot of philanthropy & charity work.  I am also an educator, and well, that's some of what I do.  Every day is different, and I am so blessed.  Every day new things are added.  I wear many hats & bags& shoes!!!
6.  What is your personal style?
Hmm, well I am definitely the queen of effortless chic.  I am so busy & I really really enjoy beauty rest, so I am not really into spending too much time getting ready, but never willing to sacrifice style.  I am a  dress girl all the way & well I wish my mother would have made Christian Louboutin my godfather.  I've been wearing his shoes for years, before the masses could even pronounce his name.  You could say I am Charlotte a la SATC  meets Lily Pulitzer's bff meets luxe cashmere meets a mean shoe department!  I adore pink & apple green it's my fave color combo, but also am really into head to toe strong black, NYC did that to me.  I dress for Daisy, not the occasion, so you could catch me in Target in 5" Louboutins, a vintage frock, a pink turban, & sequin belt, or maybe a head to toe Lily Pulitzer meets Lacoste look for sailing in the British Virgin Islands, all while going to my niece's recital.  I love fashion, but also love so many other things like beauty, food, travel, home, hotels, & entertaining, cooking, more. 
7.  What are you fave stores in LA and NYC? 
Oh goodness there are so many.  Well I love Satine on 3rd in LA. But I feel a bit guilty because I actually love it so much because it reminds me of a NYC boutique.    I also really enjoy Intermix on Robertson.  They have a great selection of shoes!  In NYC, I have several.  Of course Tracy Reese, also I adore Bergdorf & Barneys.  Shoes shoes & more shoes!  Oh and you know what store I just love, Pearl River Mart!  I am all about the unexpected!
What are the style differences between the 2 cities?
Honey it is a world, maybe even 2 worlds & one island of a difference. LA has two ends of the style spectrum, super cas(casual) or red carpet ready.  I prefer the red carpet ready feel.  I just can't get used to the influx of jersey & Ed Hardy.  It just doesn't do it for me.  But there are also the cool LA hipsters who score amazing vintage finds & have their own style. 
NYC well is just wonderful.  Sometimes I miss strolling down 5th Ave or in Fort Green, all because of the amazing inspiration I get from real guys & gals, the real trendsetters & tastemakers.  NYC style is all about lifestyle & personal style rolled into one amazing handroll!  The publicists are super polished, editors seasons ahead, & the stylists & models such risktakers.  No matter what your style is, whether you are a prepster headed for East Hampton on a hipster headed for a bar in Williamsburg, your style works, as long as you own it.  I am definitely a fan of the Upper Eastside ladies, all about pearls & cashmere, in a modern manner of course.
8.  Why did you decide to leave the BIG NYC for LA?
Oh wow, well it was actually a really important reason.  Everyone assumed it was because I was taking a right turn into the fashion world for the television scene, but that was not the ultimate reason.  I am very blessed & feel like I have had a tremendous life.  God wanted me back in LA, which is where I was born & raised.  It was weird to everyone else, since NYC & I were like Jimmy & Choo, Manolo & Blahnik, there was no separating us.  But God had a greater plan for my life!  I have been growing so much spiritually & learning so much about myself, about love, & about the beauty that every single day brings.  And guess what, now I'm a bicoastal babe!!! I'm based in LA, but am in NYC all of the time!  I get the best of both worlds, LA for the sunshine & my pretty nieces & NYC for its fabulousness .  It's actually my longest running crush.
9.  What can we expect from you in the near future?  Creating your own magazine, hosting a new fashion television show, books???
Wow like I said I am beyond blessed!  Every day has been such a fun journey!  I was the featured style expert on the Style Network's How Do I Look, it will air Aug 7th. Make sure to tivo it!  I have also been working a lot with their website, giving style tips & answering reader q&a.  I am also working with Macy's as a host & style expert.  Also my big Sept makeover issue with Health Magazine comes out in Aug, I am one of their contributing experts, & I worked with real women, different body types, & lifestyles.  I basically gave them super amazing style, but pieces that they could wear & afford.  Oh and I've recently opened my doors to working with private clients for a limited time.  I have been doing closet makeovers, image consulting, & personal shopping for clients in NYC, LA, Ohio, etc.  Also keep your eyes peeled for upcoming style shows & tv segments.  Books & products will definitely be coming along the way as well.  Stay tuned...
10.  Fall isn't here yet...but, we fashionistas start thinking about it now...what is on your list for must-haves for this Fall?
Haven't we been thinking about it since March, lol.  When you work in fashion, it makes you crazy.  It's hilarious.  We go to the Fall shows in March, & Spring shows in Sept.  Sometimes I feel like I'm experiencing DEJAVU. 

Must haves:
A great coat, time to get that investment piece!  Yes, start saving your coins now hun, because the coat is key in fall.  It's the first thing people see, & sometimes the only piece.  So, I say when shopping for your coat make sure it has at least 2 of the following traits:
-jeweled tone
-fabulous collar
-ridiculously fabulous closures
-fantastic print
-wondrous surprise printed or bright lining
Standout piece of fur, I am a big fur girl...sorry PETA, I just can't help it.  I'm a good caring person, I promise you.  So, if you can afford it, go for a floor length fox, J. Mendel is amazing.  If you can't well, don't fret, we can opt for a cropped chubbie coat, a bur bag, ooh a fur muff, or even a chic fur slip knot scarf, just make sure it's real & plush.  Faux fur is over over over!
Sexy boot, so every fall means a new exciting boot. But, this season, don't go for the simple black or brown-go for a standout option!  Invest in a key boot, could it be a berry suede, or one simply studded along the heel.  It must scream fashion, not function! 
Floral dress, I am a happy person, and I like to dress happy also!  I am obsessed with the winter gardens in bloom!  Score a floral dress like the one in aubergine & caramel by Michael Kors.
Cocktail ring,-so its pretty much become a staple in every girls wardrobe, but now is the time to go even bigger.  I would say upgrading to about 3 times the normal cocktail ring that you've donned.  It's all about increase!!!

New beauty item-whether it be a blunt bang, razored bob, or a new gloss, it must be something fresh & exciting in the beauty world. Beauty & fashion are first cousins, you can not buy for one, without caring for the other.   I've been considering taking my friend Tai's advice of compacts & vignettes for ivillage & going back to lipstick, but i am still thinking about it.  Whatever you do, go fresh & go new for beauty for fall!

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