Steal Her Style Secrets

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Designer and former fashion editor Ann Mashburn shares her approach to looking chic every day. Our favorite Mashburn mantras: “Wear what makes you feel like yourself” and “Don’t be afraid to make mistakes, it’s just clothes.” Read on for more

How would you describe your personal style? Franco-American and simple simple simple.

What’s your advice for women who want to create develop their personal uniform? What are the building blocks and how can you mix it up once you have it?  I think every woman needs to have her casual uniform down pat.. we are all so busy and need to move about every day comfortably. Getting dressed up for a specific event is easier than figuring out to look chic and comfortable on a daily basis.  I think the polished version of the “run around town” is most important. Building blocks for that could look like:

  1. A few pairs of well-fitting jeans
  2. A few pair of flat shoes that are not sneakers – ballet flat, my buckle flat with small heel, driving mocs
  3. A few jackets: boy blazer, safari-style jacket, Chanel-style jacket

These are my own building blocks and my line is filled with variations of these.  This is how I learned to dress as a fashion editor in New York: Simple things that I could move in that I could layer a scarf or jewelry on to make it feel new and fresh. Of course, I crave a little novelty every season and love something that feels of-the-moment, but I always come back to these things when I don’t know what to wear. I love basics.

You have five daughters, what’s your advice to them about finding their personal style? To take note of what they have on that they feel the most “themselves” in.  I think it can help to have a friend help with this…   it is also a reminder that personal style, like all style, is collected over time.  I think for me, I have always had a style that I felt best in, but I have gotten much better at being true to it and figuring out how to represent it.  I made a lot of mistakes and my girls should not be afraid to make them as well… it is just clothes!  You get to start over tomorrow!

Last question: When in doubt always wear… What you felt great in last time. I love a repeat.. even with a party dress!  I always say, I had a great time in this dress last time, I can’t wait to pull it out again! I don’t care that people have seen me in it before.

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