Stylist and art director Lizzy Gardner is always looking for inspiration in beautiful or unusual images, that she then tries to develop into concepts that reflect the trends of the past and the present. Having gone from catwalk styling to editorial fashion shoots, Lizzy also brings her journalistic experience on board when it comes to offering advice on style. Something that definitely comes in handy when you need to tell women to be less impulse shoppers (we are all guilty and you know it)!
How do you come up with concepts for photo shoots?
Ideas come to me all day, often when I’m doing the most mundane of tasks. I surround myself with things that inspire me, and collect images I find beautiful or unusual. Ideas need to be developed to turn them into concepts and in turn concepts and having an appreciation of both past and current fashion trends and genres is important.
What’s the biggest mistake women make when getting dressed?
I think it starts before they get dressed! The biggest mistake women make is impulse shopping (of which I am totally guilty of)… sometimes we need to stop and visualise the whole outfit before buying that totally on trend piece that will probably still be hanging in our wardrobes the following year with the tags still attached. And learning what suits you rather than following every trend.
Which strategy is best according to you: investing in some quality, yet expensive, staples or spending on cheaper items for a more diverse look?
This totally depends on the individual and their style. For me it’s a bit of both, having a few key, high quality pieces that have longevity and that can be updated with less expensive items. Blazers are my splurge staple – they go with just about everything.
What are the things that you look for when purchasing clothes and accessories?
I know what suits me, so it’s more of a case of me knowing what to avoid. I tend to buy whole outfits or items that will go with separates I already have. I like tailoring to be lined, otherwise it can look cheap. Accessories – I think you can never have enough!
If you could press a button and control everyone’s taste, what would you make people wear?
Why would I do that, the world would be a dull place! Although, I would like to press a button and stop people wearing ass showing denim cutoff shorts – get over it!
Define your style in a few words…
Feminine, emerging, balanced.
What’s your failsafe fashion piece this season?
The pencil skirt – worn edgy with a luxe tee and flats for the day, or dressed up with stilettos and a cami for the evening.
What’s your colour for this season and why?
Orange, it’s the new red!
How has your taste evolved over the years?
My style has evolved as I have learnt what suits me. Also having the confidence to push the boundaries, pairing things that ordinarily you wouldn’t think would go together, but somehow work. Fashion moves too fast to have regrets.
What’s the one thing that you are waiting patiently from a fashion designer to come up with?
I think we’re all waiting on the dress that will make us look like we’ve lost 7lbs. So maybe illusion dresses!
Fashion Week Special
Do you have a favourite designer and why?
Phoebe Philo for a number of reasons: her work ethic is something that resonates with my own (she is a self-proclaimed control-freak who is passionate about what she does). She single-handedly turned around the fortunes of the French fashion house, Celine. And the British designer’s clean, stripped back signature is oh so covetable.
Which city has the best fashion week and why?
London, of course. Burberry Prorsum, Mary Katrantzou, Christopher Kane, Erdem, Unique, Mulberry, Manolo Blahnik, Vivienne Westwood, Tom Ford – need I say more?!
Which trend were you happy to see back on the catwalks for FW13?
Stilettos – I’m so over platform soles. To me, stilettos will always be the epitome of timeless style.
Who is the most stylish celebrity according to you right now?
Carine Roitfeld – it’s hard to look as effortlessly stylish as she does; it’s not something that can be taught. Her look is sexy but not in an overly obvious way, you just want to be in her gang!