Muse, designer and model – when it comes to fashion Alexa Chung is the zeitgeist.
A bonafide British It girl who lives her life in the front row, Alexa Chung rarely puts a foot wrong in the style stakes, which is why whenever she works with a fashion brand – AG jeans, Longchamp and Superga to name a few – it often sells out in double-quick fashion.
No doubt this is something Marks and Spencer is hopeful for when it launches Archive by Alexa Chung in stores this May. Chung has designed 31 pieces inspired by looks from the brand’s archives – hence the name of the line – and 14 of the collection’s key styles will be available in Dubai (see the gallery below for images and prices).
Ahead of the launch we talked Archive and fashion tips with the style icon herself…
What was your inspiration for the Archive By Alexa Chung?
I wanted to highlight to a new demographic, to younger people who didn’t grow up in 1980s, all the dependable, classic, practical things that first took me to Marks & Spencer. It’s a fresh take for what they are famous for and when I found out about the archive I was absolutely fascinated. I had all these ideas in my head so it was great fun to be given the keys to the M&S archive and a treat to cherry pick the very best of their vast collection and I believe these looks are every bit as relevant today as they were then.
What’s the thought process you went through reimagining the archive items?
I wanted this collection to reflect my personal interaction with the brand since childhood, my school cardigan, my pleated skirt, my thermals, my dad’s jumpers I used to wear to ride my pony. I was inspired by the garments from different eras from the M&S in house magazines and TV adverts from various points in the brand’s history to create the 31 piece collection. There was something very touching about looking back through the British and social history that M&S are so synonymous with.
What’s your favourite piece from the collection?
The Harry Shirt, for sure. I had this idea in my mind, I kept calling it the Princess Diana blouse. I was sure they had one in the archive somewhere.
What are your top three style tips?
There’s more to dressing than being on-trend. It’s about what makes you feel most you. When you’re comfortable in what you are wearing, then you’re the most confident. There’s no rule because it’s dependent on each item, but balance is key.
You’re a style icon for many but who is your style icon?
I think I’m always absorbing information when it comes to that. I’ll see a woman in a big red dress and then I’ll walk down the street thinking I want a big red dress like that and then I’d put it with shiny black boots.
What’s the thought process you go through when working out what to wear yourself?
Day-to-day I don’t plan, I get in the shower then think about it. I’m quite lucky because I don’t have an office job or any kind of uniform to adhere to.
The Alexa Chung Archive collection will be available in select Marks & Spencer stores in UAE (Dubai Festival City, The Dubai Mall, Mall of the Emirates), Kuwait and Qatar.