My Style: Sara Villarreal


Photo: Courtesy of Sara Villarreal

Who taught you what you know about style?

Growing up, I spent a lot of time traveling and listening to music. Both of these are incredible influences in my life. I like to think that my style has been slowly crafted by the numerous places I’ve visited and the music that’s inspired me. It’s hard not to be shaped by activities that have consumed such a large part of my life.

Please describe your style in three words.

Sensual, feminine, playful.

What is the biggest mistake one can make when getting dressed?

Not looking in a full-length mirror!

Do you believe in role models?

I believe in inspirational people.

What are your favourite fabrics?

Leather, techno-crepe and viscose jersey.

Are there any style combinations that you object to?

There are many style combinations that I don’t prefer but I will never object to anyone’s personal choices, be that style or anything else.

Which city has the best-dressed women?

That’s a tough question. Every city is so heavily influenced by culture, weather and other socio-geographic factors. Nevertheless, the streets of Tokyo never cease to inspire me.

Would you say that you are conservative or bold?

Conservatively bold. :-)

What are the rules, if any, in the way you dress?

Dress for MY body type.

Celebrities and style...

Are inextricably linked…I guess it’s called the celebrity quotient. I don’t classify celebrities necessarily as trendsetters or style mavens just because of their celeb status, granted there are some that do just that flawlessly. Rather, they are incredibly effective tools of the fashion trade—they sell and sell big. As people who work in fashion, we can’t help but acknowledge their massive sphere of influence.

One garment/accessory that you can never have enough of?

I love dresses of every shape, silhouette and colour.

A woman should always look like...

She’s comfortable and self-confident in what she’s wearing.

How do you select your clothing every morning?

My mood and the weather dictate all daily wardrobe choices.

What is your biggest regret?

No regrets. Every missed opportunity, mistake or failure is a valuable lesson learned.

The three essential things a woman should know about style are...

Try on things that have no hanger appeal. I find these pieces usually look best on the body because of unique draping or silhouette. Don’t be afraid to size up. If you are traditionally a size four but it doesn’t fit, go up a size! Avoid the bulge at all costs. Accessories are critical, even if it’s something minimal. They complete the outfit.

Do you have any shopping rituals?

This might sound odd but I like going shopping in my exercise clothes and flip-flops. Not after I’ve worked out — rather, I just throw them on as my gear for a day of shopping. They are the absolute easiest, no-fuss clothing to pull on and off.

We will never see you wearing...

Anything from the androgynous aesthetic or overly revealing clothing. I like looking sophisticated yet sexy. Neither of these suits me at all.

Which new designers do you follow and why?

Carly Cushnie and Michelle Ochs; their brand epitomises my style. Very talented young ladies.

The most stylish person you have ever seen?

I can’t say one specific person takes the accolade for “most stylish person I’ve ever seen.” I can say that I am constantly in awe of all the well-dressed, polished women I see during Fashion Week both in NYC and Paris. They are daring, experimental and impeccably put-together. I love it.

What is the first thing you notice on a woman?

If the clothing is too tight, then the jewellery.

What are the most treasured items in your wardrobe?

Chris Benz grey shearling coat with fox top; my very first designer bag, a cute shoulder bag by Prada that is still in mint condition; a 4-set of copper snake-design bangles bought off the wrist of a young woman that belonged to the Masai warriors in Kenya.

The one image that defined your approach to style...

I’m going to have to pass on this one. Sorry! There is no one thing that defines my approach to style.

Which designer never fails to impress you?

Alber Elbaz for Lanvin.

One article of clothing that a woman needs to pay close attention to is...

Uhh, really? All of it.

Is comfort an enemy of style?

No way. I think that’s a silly notion. Herve dresses are incredibly comfy.

Who would you like to see next in €œMy Style€?

Natalie Massenet.

The best word of advice you have ever heard?

From my dad: “Sara, there is always going to be a host of reasons why you should not do something — too young, lack of experience, intimidation, poor timing, unfamiliarity, potential for failure… forget all that. You won’t know until you try. Just do your best and go for it.”

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