Affect the style bloggers to how we dress? And if so, why? The 19 year old Texan Jane Aldridge, who is behind the successful Sea of Shoes, trying to give the answer with her last project that involved-a book called Style Yourself. Aldridge both covers, and writes the foreword to the book that, with the help of nearly 100 international bloggers including Tavi Gevinson and Susanna Lau, offers sartorial tips in one handy reference-like tome. You can also expect to get their two cents on shopping, outfit ideas, and building your own look, as well as thorough illustrations of all the pieces that go into a closet.
First and foremost, congrats on Style Yourself! It's a really fun read. How did this project come about?
The publishers actually approached me last year, explained the idea to me, and it just sounded amazing. We've been working closely ever since then — it's been a long time in the making, and I'm so excited to finally see the finished product! I wrote the foreword, and basically tried to speak to what the heart of the book is about, which is being able to really hone your style — to evolve it and to be able to interact with other people who love fashion, too. It was a really natural process.
In your introduction, you talk about how fashion has always been a form of escapism for you, especially as an outsider in your town. Now you’ve become somewhat of a leader. What has that transformation been like?
I’m still in the suburbs, and I’m not in the fashion world. I just feel so lucky that I can spend all day emerged in that world and make something out of it.
What do you think is the difference between getting style advice from a personal style blogger verses a magazine editorial? What is it about style bloggers that people like?
I think it’s so much more of a real-life context. They are all things you would wear every day. It’s all very accessible. They’re just people off the street, so it’s so great to have this index with all these outfits.
I think it's a great reference to have whenever you're looking at your closet, thinking, "I have all these great clothes, but nothing to wear!" I think it's great to have something to reference when you're stumped for ideas. You can find a look that you like, and then fill it in with what you've already got in your wardrobe. The book's great because it gives you perspective on what you actually already have.
Since Style Yourself is all about discovering your individual look, tell us — what's one styling trick you love?
I think one thing you'll always be able to use is knowing how to tie a scarf a lot of different ways. In the seventies, clothes were bought in sets — like as complete suits — and they came with scarves you could wear in five different ways. I love that old-school approach, where everything is multifunctional and matchy-matchy. My grandmother actually gave me a really beautiful parakeet scarf when I was eleven, as a birthday gift, and I still wear it today.
What inspires you lately?
I was looking at pictures of Jerry Hall from the 70's and 80's and I love all her styles and hair.
What is your fashion item-fetish right now?
The riding pants. It is difficult to find the right one that will have enough volume at the hips and not to make you look like a fat whale. I ordered one of Ralph Lauren, we'll see how it is.
Did you have the opportunity to see the book complete?
I think it's wonderful. And so useful. Gives advices that are really affordable, whatever the contents of your closet.
You can order the "Style Yourself" here.