SOL's very first Taste Maker is Alexandra Spiegel, Deputy Product Editor at Net-a-
Porter, with a penchant for Raf Simons and Simone Rocha we knew it was love at first sight.
We sat down with Alexandra to talk about her Definition of Aesthetics, personal style and the future of fashion.
You can check out more of Alexandra's stylish life on her instagram.
What does Aesthetics mean to you?
I find aesthetics anywhere – in a street, a scent, textiles, nature or architecture. Actually in everything that’s surrounding us or in certain kinds of beauty that could be inherent. For me it’s something subtle and I find aesthetics rather in the unobvious and the detail.
What is the difference between Fashion and Style according to your own experience?
Style is closer linked to personality and our own history and it’s more sustainable somehow. Fashion can be definitely a form of self-expression too, but overall it’s more fast and exchangeable. But I believe, that’s what makes fashion appealing to many people: the constant urge for innovation and renewal. It’s always about reinvention and looking into the future.
How would you define your own personal style?
I think my own style is quiet puristic, but with a subtle eccentric direction. I might also have some Scandinavian influences as I used to live in Hamburg and Berlin for a while – both cities are mostly defined by a Nordic aesthetics. Above all, my look needs to feel easy and cool. I like shapes with a masculine twist as well as exaggerated forms as I have a slightly petite figure. My colour range goes from non-colours like black, white and grey to contrasting primary colours as you could find them in De Stijl art. I love the structured materials and shapes of Junya Watanabe and Japanese design in general. Belgium designers like Raf Simons or Dries van Noten are great because of their work with colour. If I’m into something more feminine I would go for Sonia Rykiel or vintage Chloe by Karl Lagerfeld.
Who are some of your style muses/inspiration? And Where do you go to seek inspiration for your own wardrobe?
Basically I would find inspiration rather in art or culture than in actual icons or street-style. Influencers are nice to look at, but the outfits are mostly quiet commercial and I know many of the products already, also because it’s part of the fashion marketing. Also, I would love to read more magazines again, but most of the research and business is happening online for me since some years.
London has a lot to offer in terms of contemporary art and photography. I’m regularly checking galleries like Tate, Saatchi, 180 The Strand, Blain Southern, Alison Jacques or White Cube, amongst others. Also I like to look at architecture and sculpture, photography and movies. Another of my influences is HipHop and street-culture from the end of 90s and 00s. It was also the time I started to be fascinated about fashion looking at shows like Marc Jacobs, Jil Sander, Jean Paul Gaultier and the Haute Couture. I think right now the 90s and 00s are getting more important and exciting, as we reworked the 70s nostalgia and the 80s already, and now it goes back to “our time”.
Items that you cannot live without on a daily basis?
One of my bags, tinted lip balm and a (phone-)camera.
The perfect wardrobe would include…
A selection of tailored, structured pieces which are easy to combine, for example from Lemaire, Jil Sander or Theory and some statement-dresses – for that I love Dries van Noten, Simone Rocha or Dior – and some nice shades. Since the cities I lived in are very spacious, Sneakers are my go-to and I just love them, they are mostly casual and from Common Projects, adidas or Nike. Sometimes I’m into heeled ankle boots from Acne Studios or Maison Margiela. A good selection of coats and jackets is essential too. I like Keji for raw denim and for example Jaquemus or Ann Demeulemester for exceptional wool coats.
Where can one creep on your style?
You are Deputy Product Editor for Net-a-Porter, a pioneer in the digital fashion world, how do you envision the future of fashion?
On the one hand all the online and social media subject made fashion really democratic and accessible all over the world. I like the inclusivity now, because no matter where you’re living, you can check the latest runway news or order online.
On the other hand I’m wondering if there will be an oversaturation accelerated by social media and online fashion business. At some point I can imagine It goes back to the roots and more responsibility with production and stock again. Some houses like Tom Ford or Burberry broke up the classic fashion cycle in the past years. Also Vetements found new ways to present their collection. And we saw already more gender fluidity with mens- and womenswear combined in shows. Nevertheless, the fashion business creates phantasies with campaigns and editorials. Especially luxury fashion needs these six months to build up desirability and make people dream.
Any interesting emerging designers on your radar you would like to mention?
Sid Neigum, Rejina Pyo, Faustine Steinmetz, Ellery, Palomo Spain, Molly Goddard and Neous.
Finally if you could sum yourself up in a single item what would it be and why?
That’s tricky to describe myself with just one piece – maybe a book as I’m always dreaming or reflecting on something.