Elettra Wiedemann on style
Style is important because it tells a story about who you are, says model-and-so-much-more Elettra Wiedemann. We asked her to tell us hers.
Elettra Wiedemann is more than just a pretty face. The mistress of multitasking has graced the pages of such magazines as Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar, earned her master’s degree in biomedicine at the London School of Economics, and founded the Impatient Foodie, which documents culinary triumphs, imagined dinner parties, and what is perhaps the best grilled cheese recipe on the Internet.
In the first instalment of an interview series we call Repeat Offender, Wiedemann shares her childhood obsession with Alice in Wonderland, her aversion to white denim, and the pair of trousers she cannot stop wearing this season.
”When I was two I had a complete obsession with Alice in Wonderland
and refused to take off my Alice in Wonderland outfit for two years.
It was this really beautiful hand-sewn blue dress with a little white
apron and the puffy sleeves. I forced my mom and my grandmother to buy
me, like, 9,000 pairs of thick white tights and I found black shoes
and I just did not get out of that for a really long time. My parents
never really seemed to care that much about what I wore or pushed me
to look a certain way. For a while, I was very big into wearing Betsey
Johnson leggings and huge T-shirts. And when I had to transfer schools
in the third grade, I wore a cowboy outfit. I wasn’t that cool a kid,
I guess. Working in the fashion industry kind of helped me figure out
what I actually like to wear. Now I feel like I have maybe not a great
wardrobe, but a much better one. No costumes in there.
When I was two I had a complete obsession with Alice in Wonderland and refused to take off my Alice in Wonderland outfit for two years.Elettra Wiedemann
I’m very active, and I always have been. For me, the most important thing is to have clothes that are functional. I’m really not one of those girls who hangs out in six-inch heels and white jeans. I need to have clothes that work as well when I’m in the kitchen and testing a recipe as they do when I’m meeting with a fashion editor, so I try to look as pulled together as possible, but I definitely never look as polished as a lot of other girls I know! But I really try! I buy a bunch of basics that are interchangeable and go together and at least look kind of elegant, but are still comfortable enough for me to live my life in without stressing about it. Things that I can throw in the wash are good. I’d rather not have a $5,000 dry-cleaning bill every month.
I just bought a pair of trousers recently. The label says DWP. I have no idea what brand that is. They are just the most incredibly comfortable, elegant-looking pants I’ve ever owned in my life. In fact, I’m going to see if I can buy, like, five more pairs in different colours. They’re really baggy and just cut really well. They have an elastic waistband. I’ve worn them with t-shirts and cropped sweaters and nice, long shirts. They seem to kind of go with everything. I’ve worn them out to dinners, and I’ve worn them to meetings, and everyone compliments them, so they’re my new complete obsession.
My favourite person to look at is this woman named Slim Keith. She had incredible style. I think she’s from the ‘50s or something, but if you look at a picture of her she could be from today—the way she dresses and kind of her posture and everything. The way she holds herself is so modern, I think. I don’t ever think I’ll be quite as put together as she is, but I emulate her as best I can. She just had it.
Style is important because it tells a story about who you are. It doesn’t mean you have to look perfect always, but what you choose to wear and how you choose to wear it is indicative of your life and your lifestyle. Right now, I’m in sweatpants and dirty gym clothing underneath and a sweater on top and that says a lot about who I am. It doesn’t have to be judgmental. It just is—and it’s great.”