Emma Davenport interviews Rebecca James @thestylistsays on Spring Racing Fashion trends for 2017 along with all your fashion must haves and must NOT’S…
ED: Bec! Firstly, talk about dream job for anyone that loves fashion. How did you get into styling?
RJ: I first got into styling through good friend of mine who was working with Megan Gale on Project Runway as well as campaigns for Dotti and the Just Group and it kind of took off from there. I slowly got asked to do personal styling and at first I didn’t really think of exploring it, but looking back I’m so glad I did.
ED: Who was your first big client?
RJ: My first big client was actually my brother, (Winter Olympian and Snowboard Halfpipe World Champion) Scotty James. He started appearing in the media at 15 years old for photoshoots and as his big sister I was there to throw out the ‘snowboarder style’ and bring in sharper looks! Safe to say Scotty wasn’t too pleased about the change at the start, but now he’s known for his great style.
Since then I have gone on to style Olympic Gold Medalist Torah Bright, Bold & The Beautiful Star Ash Brewer, American Pro Surfer Ivy Miller and Olympian Liz Cambage as well as working with personal clients, Westfield Shopping Centres and editorial fashion shoots.
ED: Clearly there’s no-one more qualified – so let’s talk style! Sometimes we get caught up on buying ‘on trend’ pieces but what question should we ask ourselves before buying something?
RJ: I would ask, is it a timeless piece?
Trends are great but remember they date so ask yourself if you’ll wear it again in 6 months time…if the answer is no then definitely think about it.
ED: Then there’s the flip side, the excuse we use ’it was an investment!’ Anyway, having plenty of experience, what are your 3 splurge items we should never compromise cash for quality on?
RJ: Very hard to narrow it down to three but I’d have to say:
- Definitely a black blazer, hip length so it’s versatile.
- A good quality handbag that you can use everyday.
- A key accessory, so either an oversized watch or statement earrings depending on your style… I’m more of am earring girl.
ED: Is there a trend you would rather forget?
RJ: Oh my gosh so many! You can forget about lace up body suits, furry footwear, leggings as pants (leggings are not pants!) chokers, all those copy ‘wrap dresses’ and slouch pants.
ED: (laughs) A few on your list there! What about one trend that you think will live forever?
RJ: I’ve got a few for this one too #sorrynotsorry
I love boyfriend or a slightly oversized shirt – I tend to go for men’s shirts every now and again for a looser fit.
Layering will never die, stripes are always on trend and statement earrings.
Decjuba nailing the layered look.
ED: The Spring Racing Carnival is just around the corner, for me it means outfits most Saturdays for Channel Seven’s Horse Racing coverage so I’m always on the hunt for inspiration– What do you think sets racing fashion apart?
RJ: Don’t be afraid to push your boundaries but remember to balance your look! I love these very feminine yet edgy looks from previous years for inspiration.
ED: Three things to remember when shopping for the races?
RJ: Heel height must be appropriate for a full day of wear. 9cm is max for the races, shoes stay on Ladies!!!
Consider the weather! For Melbourne races especially, a jacket in spring is usually necessary.
Underwear…PLEASE take your underwear when trying on outfits, knicker lines are a NO NO!!!
ED: What’s the biggest fashion HELL-NO when it comes to the races?
RJ: Being overdone!! It’s not a competition on who has the biggest fascinator or who comes wearing the most colours. Balance your looks, if you’re going to do a bigger head piece then don’t go crazy with the bottom half and vice versa.
Strapless dresses are my number one hate at the races. They are for late afternoons/evenings not day events, there is nothing worse then seeing women constantly pulling up their dresses all day.
I said it before, but purchase shoes with an appropriate heel height.
Fluffy, colourful, messy fascinators – just NO!
And finally, the tan. Get a professional spray tan not a home job.
ED: Brutal! But fair. Thankfully you’ll be styling a few racing looks for me this year and I wanna know what direction you’re thinking?!
RJ: With you Em, I’ll be finding outfits to compliment your shape by bringing skirts or tops in at the waist line. Mixing and matching patterns and bringing out some colour paired with head pieces and statement earrings. Really fun and playful just like your personality!
ED: Love that mood board! And finally, who is your style icon and where can we stalk their style?
RJ: I have a few that I look to for inspiration:
Harper and Harley @harperandharley
Pernille Teisbaer @pernilleteisbaek
Amanda Shadforth AKA @oraclefox
Emma Davenport is a reporter for Channel Seven and Founder of Grace and James candles.
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