We know: It’s hard to think that someone who’s gone from It girl to It woman — and wrote the book on it — still doesn’t have all of the answers. But, for Alexa Chung, a woman whose resumé reads more like three careers wrapped up into one, we realized that even with the riches and the fame, hard work — and trying to keep up responding to more than three million followers every time you want to post an Instagram — never changes.
That candor, plus a few tricks passed down from her Grandpa Kwan, are just a few things we learned from the street style legend when Refinery29’s global editor-in-chief and co-founder Christene Barberich sat down with her for the latest episode of UnStyled. In just a few years, Chung has gone from writing for British Vogue to covering it, finding love and outlasting it, and now, is poised to establish herself a serious fashion designer. From her mouth to your ears, Chung’s longterm goals include — and we quote — “not screwing anybody over,” and an earnest desire to incorporate sustainable fashion into her eponymous line (among many other things, of course).
And if you're curious about other facets of life — like, who she's dating these days — here's what she has to say: "It can't be about willpower or how things are on paper. You either meet someone and you feel it, or you don’t. You can't rush it along. I might be 70 when I fall in love again. That's cool."
That wisdom, and the aforementioned aspirations above, could only come from someone who's spent a good chunk of their career(s) both on the inside and outside of the industry. And with that type of experience, we’d say she’s more than prepared to conquer it all. Check out a snippet of Alexa Chung's musings on this week's UnStyled podcast below, and be sure to subscribe for more.
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Your new line is an interesting example of this new direction of people creating collections and pieces that are really personally connected to an identity, to a person's history.
Alexa Chung: "But when it comes to the structure of the fashion industry, just because things have been done that way for a certain amount of time, doesn't mean it has to be done that way. In certain areas of the world, you still have to play that game. But equally, it seems to me like there's now this more direct conduit for conversation between you and an audience. You don’t have to observe the same sort of structure."
Social media, in all its varied forms, has become a means of just constant exploitation.
AC: "Now we live in a world where it's expected that anyone with over a certain amount of followers on Instagram are probably flocking us some kind of product. But there's also no shade anymore, whereas it used to be awful for overexposure or being connected to too many different brand things. Now it's celebrated, right?"
You're highly involved in the execution of each piece of your collection, right?
AC: "I kind of swing between giving a shit about whether people understand I'm involved and then not because I give up. I'd get really mad because I've been working my tits off and staying there until really late at night, getting up really early, crying over this shit. Then people would be like, 'But how much of it is you?' I'd be like, 'You know what? Don’t worry about it. Maybe none of it then.'"