Interview with Laura Bailey: Style inspirations, words of advice, fashion splurges and modelling for Radley…

Last week Radley London opened their Westfield Stratford store, bringing gorgeous leather bags to the masses in the East End. On the opening night, Radley spokeswoman Laura Bailey was on hand to greet party goers and talk all things Radley. We asked Laura a few questions ranging from her Radley favourites to her ultimate style inspirations…

Can you tell us how the collaboration with Radley
came about? Why Radley?

I was thrilled to be approached by Radley to
be their brand ambassador and front the campaign. I’m proud to be working with
a great British brand championing great craftsmanship and affordable luxe and
have also been so lucky to work with total dream teams on two successive
seasons’s shoots.

Were there any bags in particular you were
begging to take home with you after the shoot?

It’s hard to choose a favourite but the two I
wanted to take home from the shoot were the small olive green Stables satchel
and the double pocket tan Grand Union Both, for me, strike the perfect balance
between classic style and fashion edge, ideal for everyday work or play or
both. I’ll choose a bag to last forever but that also feels absolutely right
for now.

Your style in the campaign is so effortlessly chic. How would you describe
your day to day style?

Eclectic English tomboy with a bit of glamour in
the mix (hopefully).My life is hectic and diverse, so I want my clothes-and
accessories-to work hard in all worlds. I rely on boyish shirts, oversized
knits ,pencil skirts and best-beloved denim ..with, admittedly the occasional
splurge on a special party dress or another, probably unnecessary, pair of high
heels. Day to day though, I ride my bike pretty much everywhere, so a raincoat
and a helmet are my rather less glamorous essentials.

And who would you say inspires your style?

A sixties Julie Christie, seventies Lauren Hutton,
Fellini movies, any pretty girl I see on the street. And my big gang of
incredible girlfriends including the always-stylish Amanda Harlech, Bella Freud
and  Stella McCartney.

Every girl seems to have their fashion vice. Is
yours shoes, handbags or a certain type of clothing like blouses, pencil skirts
or jeans?

I can get obsessive about any of the above given
the time and opportunity, but the things I can’t seem to resist buying again
and again are vintage blouses ,white vests and tees, and bows for my hair. I’ve
also worn the same old navy Prada duffle coat all winter for the last five
years. Just can’t give it up.

What do you always carry inside your Radley bag?

A Canon G12 camera and a paperback, my diary and
assorted notebooks and pencils, a Blackberry for work and iPhone for play
(commitment issues..). A Chanel blush compact and scent in miniature, a black
eyeliner and Kiehls lip balm. And of course, whatever my kids’ obsession du
jour is, Buckyballs, travel-chess and a rather tired-looking polar bear for
now. Radley bags are great because they all the right pockets and compartments
to hold it all!

And finally… words of advice for style, a career in fashion or life in
general… what are words you have lived by that have served you well?

As a
model and a writer, I try to take inspiration from anywhere and everywhere. To
steal from Coco Chanel, ‘Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only.
Fashion is in the sky, in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we
live, what is happening…’.The object is to remain curious and unafraid, in
fashion and in life…


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