Stylist, wardrobe designer, trend forecaster, designer confidant, contributor to Purple and L'Officiel...sounds like a brief for any stylish lady's ultimate dream job. And yes, Queens-born New Yorker Masha Orlov not only has such a resume, her chic and eclectic apartment proves it 10-fold. Having snapped Masha around town a few times—we love her no-nonsense approach to gritty glamour—we were more than delighted to have an invitation inside her pad and enviable closet. Read on for this City girl's dress-up manifesto.
Above, left: Outside her Upper West Side apartment in a silk Zac Posen dress, Sophia Kokosalaki sunglasses, and Christian Louboutin for Jeremy Scott heels. Above, right: In the living room, Masha wears a Junya Watanabe coat, a Pleasure Principle tie-dye dress , Report Signature patent heels, and a hat by Yazbukey. Enlarge Image
One word: Describe your style?
Masha riding her bike along the West Side Highway in a vintage Comme des Garçons chiffon blazer, Obesity & Speed tie-dye tunic dress, customized vintage Norma Kamali cowboy boots. Enlarge Image
Tell us your five key wardrobe pieces, things you find yourself wearing constantly?
"Kill City and Lip Service jeans from Trash & Vaudeville, vintage glasses, colored pearl and stone stud earrings, Obesity & Speed customized T-shirts, and lots of different kinds of jackets."
A collage on the fridge. Enlarge Image
What's your best cheap score of late?
"Definitely a vintage Gaultier motorcycle jacket from Tokio 7. Definite score."
In the kitchen, wearing a Mara Hoffman star print top and Obesity & Speed customized vintage jeans. Enlarge Image
If you had a style soul-mate, who would it be?
In the living room in a vintage Chanel jacket, Nicolas Andreas Taralis jeans, and customized vintage shoes. Enlarge Image
Masha in her bedroom wearing an Olaf Breuning for Pleasure Principle tank top and Jeremy Scott sunglasses. Enlarge Image
Do you have a secret store that you're willing to reveal, or a favorite neighborhood shopping spot?
"All I can say is you really need to keep your eyes open...the best stuff sometimes comes from the most unexpected places. But I admit, I love Beacon's Closet and Tokio 7 in NYC."
A filing cabinet holds all Masha's vintage jewelry collected from her travels around the world. View image
If you could swap closets with anyone living or dead who would it be?
"I'm happy with my clothes, I just need a bigger closet!"
On the street outside her house wearing a Levi's leather biker jacket, shredded Obesity & Speed T-shirt, Victoria Secret bra, tie-dye Kill City jeans, and Report Signature shoes. Enlarge Image Does your style have a theme song?
"There are two: 'The Promise' by When In Rome and 'Breakdown' by Carol."
A vintage hat adorned with a candy bow tie from F.A.O. Schwartz. Enlarge Image
Any reading material you can't live without lately?
"Illuminations by Arthur Rimbaud."
In her bedroom in a goat fur Ralph Rucci coat and suede Bally boots. Enlarge Image
Above, left: In her closet, Masha wears an Olaf Breuning for Pleasure Principle tank top, North Beach Leather skirt, The sock Man tie-dye tights, Jeremy Scott sunglasses, and Miu Miu men's boots. Above, right: When Masha is travelling, she stops into odd shops and markets on the hunt for unique jewelry. Enlarge Image
Tell us, is there anything in your closet that you simply cannot bear to throw away?
"Oh yes, many pieces, actually, especially presents. I'm sentimental. There are two pieces in particular from Charles Anastase's first collection—a hand-painted silk T-shirt and hand painted silk dress. They are so fragile and special that I can never wear them but the pieces never leave my closet. Maybe finally after almost 10 years of owning them, I will wear them this summer.
Applying lipstick wearing a Levi's leather biker jacket and beaded skeleton earrings from Mexico. Enlarge Image
We love giving our readers tips from ladies like yourself. Do you have any tricks of the trade that you could share with us?
"Mine is simple: dress up, have fun with fashion, that's what it's there for."
On the bureau, Yazbukey bow brooches. Enlarge Image
What inspires your styling? And who are some of your favorite people to work with?
"Pretty much everyone around me is inspiring: my colleagues and confidants, and I especially love doing editorials for Purple Fashion and working with my designer friends Jeremy Scott, Zac Posen, Obesity & Speed, and Mara Hoffman."
Your style is kind of daring—is there anything that freaks you out though, that you wouldn't be caught wearing?
"Polyester. Unless it is incredible in design or the quality of the fabrication is exceptional."
Outside her house wearing a Levi's leather biker jacket, shredded Obesity & Speed T-shirt, Victoria Secret bra, and tie-dye Kill City jeans. Enlarge Image
We love that your closet is really messy...how do you find anything in there?
"Yes, I can always find everything because it is always organized, even if looks messy. Sort of like my own brand of organized chaos!"
See more of Kava Gorna's work at www.kavagorna.com...
Photos by Kava Gorna