In this week’s edition of The Style File, we’re chatting with Diana – the fun-loving, 20-something from the Midwest now living across the pond in London! She shares with us all her insights into European fashion as well as the one beauty secret EVERY woman should know. For more Style File fun, check out our archives.
name: Diana Rae Stoney
age: 26 (aka, its no longer appropriate to shop at Forever 21)
hometown: Franklin, Wisconsin
where you live now: London, England
occupation: Sales Agent
describe your style in three words:
- Functional – an item must be ready, willing, and able to survive the harsh city elements along side me for the entire day, because cobblestones, rain and random celebrity sightings are a regular in these parts. Dress accordingly!
- Chic – although casual comfort is always desirable, you never want to show up to an occasion under dressed. But a dually embarrassing faux pas is to show up overdressed! So I keep my ensemble smart and balanced. Jeans and pearls. Sequins and leather.
- Aspirational – No, I don’t have ten grand to spend on 8 carat emerald rings, but I have no qualms about rocking massive cocktail jewelry to happy hour drinks with the gals! So maybe I can’t afford the gorgeous Burberry woven raffia trench coat, but I love the sleek silhouette and fabulous versatility of the classic trench. Ethical debates aside, a mink coat will never hang in my closet, but a faux fur wrap is the perfect accessory to an autumn wedding in Cambridge. I love luxurious accents that add a touch of decadence to any occasion!
living in London, what are some of the biggest differences you notice between European and American style?: Everything is dirty in Europe! Grunge is en vogue. Dirty jean, dirty hair, dirty nails. Wrinkled tops. Smokey eyes. Scuffed boots. Muted tones. Coffee stained teeth. Faded shirts. Even their fakes tans are a grimier orange! Sometimes, even if I spend an hour perfectly curling my hair into gentle tendrils, I have to rough it up a bit, and lacquer on some thick, sticky hair spray before I head out. Bright red pea coats, pastel blouses, white tennis shoes, and lash defining mascara are a dead giveaway of a foreigner.
your favorite European trend right now: Tweed! Tweed blazers, tweed patches, tweed purses, tweed hair bands, tweed anything! I’m obsessed! Since I’m blonde haired and fair skinned, I tend to lean towards the camel, beige, and warm tan blends. I love how you can find the perfect combination to accent your own palate. Warm chesnuts, and deep olives, even subtle red hues. No matter what your complexion – there’s a blend to compliment your natural features.
the three items always in my purse are _______________: lip gloss, oyster card (for riding public transport!) and a fabulous gadget that is one half compact mirror, one half mini-hair brush!
what is the best piece of fashion advice you’ve ever received? Like so many other children of the 90’s, my fashion epiphany came to me during an especially poignant episode of Ricki Lake, obviously. The plucky talk show host ran a special on aging gracefully, in which the audience was polled to determine the estimated age of various women on stage. It was absolutely astonishing! Every single woman who advocated a generous moisturizing routine was unanimously voted significantly below her actual age. I’m talking, 60 year old mothers of 3 who were assumed to be sassy 40 year olds! And it wasn’t any particular regimen over another – it was simply the continual use of moisture enhancing products – everything from Vaseline to luxurious diamond crème. Bottom line – lather up! Face, neck, elbows, knees, hands… even your pretty little baby bottom. Grab some goop and lay it on thick! When you have dazzling, radiant skin, you’ve got the best accessory in the universe!
the three items from June Ruby I’d most like to own:
- Duffy Shaker Cardigan – matched with some ever-so-comfortable black leggings and tan, leather boots (current faves from British designers: http://www.redordead.com/)
- Three Dot Cap Sleeved Shirred Cotton Dress – because anything that accentuates my bright baby blues is essential!
- L’amie D’amie Vintage Circles Earrings – because when second-day dirty hair requires a messy bun, my ear require fabulous accents!