I hope you all enjoyed meeting Cecilia yesterday– isn’t her closet fantastic? If I was her I’d try to wear a different beautiful jacket every day! Here we go – the second part of Cecilia’s interview, below. Enjoy!
Isabel Marant “Leon” coat, reversible
Is Isabel Marant very popular in Hong Kong? How do you find style in Hong Kong, versus the United States?
I would say it is getting more popular. Case in point: I saw no less than four dozen of the fringed and delicately beaded Malibu tops in one of the cardboard boxes of a shipment that arrived when I happened in the Marant store trying on a fur jacket! The buyer wouldn’t have ordered that many $1035 tops if she’s not sure they’ll sell – fast – would she? Very roughly speaking, in Central it’d be more likely for one to see a New York type of style, whereas in Causeway Bay, it’d feel more like Los Angeles.
Hong Kong is well known for its fast pace in nearly everything. As far as fashion is concerned, I reckon Hong Kong girls are really, really lucky. For decades women here have been able to get almost whatever they happen to set sights eyes on, from all over the world – thanks to the likes of Joyce Ma and Judy Yu, as well as Lane Crawford.
Beautiful YSL tuxedo jacket
Isabel Marant Xacala raccoon jacket and vest
If you were to advise a good friend to invest in a few key items – what would they be?
First and foremost, an Hermès Kelly or Birkin, or a Chanel 2.55. For clothing items – I have been waiting for this question, hahaha! – I have a list of clothing investments that has been refined for years and I believe these are it. Well, I hope my that these investments will pay off for my good friend…
1. A Chanel tweed jacket
2. A Yves Saint Laurent tuxedo jacket
3. A Rick Owens leather jacket
4. A Burberry or Lanvin trench coat
5. A MaxMara cashmere or camel hair coat
6. A Fendi mink coat or, for understated luxury, a Mr&Mrs Furs mink-lined parka
7. A L’wren Scott cashmere cardigan with quarter-length sleeves
8. A Lucien Pellat Finet cashmere sweater
9. An Alaia little black dress, or skirt
10. A La Perla black or nude lace bra with matching briefs (I have a natural aversion to thongs)
To complete my friend’s investment I’d also recommend:a. A pair of diamond studs. A mechanical watchc. A pair of the most classic pointed-toe and 105mm-heel Manolos, or a pair of sky-high Louboutins (though my personal favorites are his Simple 70 pumps).
What’s an item/designer that you splurged over, thinking you were going to wear it tons – and you’ve barely worn it at all?
A crocodile tote bag by the Singaporean brand, Kwanpen. The bag is actually pretty well made of high quality crocodile skin (“the Singapore Small Scale”), and it’s of a very classy box shape. But for some strange reason I have used it much less often than I would’ve wanted.
Isabel Marant “Michal” jacket
Can you share a key piece of advice on style/shopping/budgeting that you’ve had to learn over the years?
Buy only what suits you. If you are not entirely in love with yourself in it, no matter how “in” it is, or how much it has been marked down, it is not yours.
Isabel Marant Maeva goat hair jacket
What percent of your items do you buy on sale, versus full price?
Roughly, half and half. Needless to say everybody loves a bargain, but there’re times when you know you just can’t wait. For example, I have never, ever in my life been successful in getting a nice Chanel jacket in 34 during mark-down. There were times I did come across a couple of jackets in size 34 marked down, but they were in such a, um, special – if not awkward – design in which I couldn’t make myself interested. When sales are on, I stock up good quality basics, such as cashmere sweaters and jeans.
Comparison of Celine Luggage tote vs. Hermes 30cm Birkin
Isabel Marant Yeliz top and dress
What are some of your other passions and hobbies?
“Other”? So I can’t say shopping, can I? Okay, then…it’s got to be reading. I buy books, tons of books, even when I’m traveling. I usually reserve some space in my luggage for books. I love looking at magazines, and of course, fashion blogs, too. I also pride myself in gift-giving. Exploring new things and new brands is great fun, so is finding something that matches the friend’s taste and life style, so much so that he or she grins and gives you a huge hug when seeing the gift!
Chanel tweed 2.55 bag, limited edition
Hermes scarves in Bolduc and Brides de Gala
Finally – please share something surprising about yourself 🙂
You won’t see this in the pictures here, but I have a big head. When I was little I always lost my balance, and frequently fell down, hit my head, and ended up being sent to the ER for stitches. The frequency of my visits was so high that the ER nurses and I were on a first-name basis!
Hahaha I love the last answer. I have a big head too, plus I’m short so I’m kind of a bobble. Sigh. I hope you all enjoyed meeting Cecilia – as a jacket lover myself, this whole interview was basically heaven for me. Thank you again Cecilia for being gracious and kind enough to share your beautiful taste and advice with us!