Style Bubble's div'ette dishes her rules of fashion. By Christene Barberich
There are few things we love more here at Refinery29 than giving props to true style mavericks—the ones who do their own thing, and do it so well. And there's no question that Susanna Lau (a.k.a. Susie Bubble), the 24-year-old arbiter behind one of our favorite fashion blogs, Style Bubble, falls squarely into this category. Born and based in London, Lau spends her days as a digital media planner at an ad agency. But the rest of her time is spent blogging, styling, and, most notably, dressing Way Up and reporting on every last little satin mini and headband to the world at large. "When I was five, I set my sights on a pair of black patent T-bar shoes and paired them with things that didn't really match," Lau says. "That probably set me on a path of constantly trying different things."
It's this everyday pursuit of the most gorgeously unruly pairings (ie: The Clash works) that has gotten her blog of musings bookmarked a thousand times over. "Living in London gives me a sense of freedom and an ability to not really care about what other people think…most of the time!" she says. "I've always just gone with whimsy and impulses. If I suddenly think to myself 'Bright pink hat,' I just really need to wear a bright pink hat." Naturally, we asked Lau to dish on all the stuff that makes her sense of style stand out. "[The way I dress] isn't just about wanting to be unique, but also not wanting to stand still and settle down…but that might change with time."
How would you describe your style?
Eclectic, hopefully without a genre to define it.
Tell us your essentials, meaning, the items you find yourself always buying, wearing, collecting, replacing time and time again?
1. Gray V-neck cardigans in all different shades, different fabrics, and cuts.
2. Headbands that range from the simple to the ornate.
3. Vintage slip dresses/skirts that I repeatedly buy just to collect all the different colors…the odder the color, the better.
4. Any sort of interesting hosiery; these days, they come in such a vast variety, I think my mission is to amass them all.
Your personal style snapshots are one of the main draws to your blog. Has dressing for an audience pushed you to be more adventurous?
Definitely not. If anything, I feel like I have to hold back on the blog. Before I started the blog, other people's opinions of my style were never revealed to me, and I'd just go about my ways, doing my thing. When you get criticism and hate mail though, you start to question if there is something you're doing wrong. Even if the blog didn't exist, I'd still be doing my little style experiments and trying different things. I think people seem to respond to personal style shots more only because the playing field is lowered as it were. They can somehow relate to me wearing something, be it admiration, criticism, or indifference.
Any style heroes?
There isn't any one person that I base my own style on, but there are people whose style I admire for sure, like Daphne Guinness, Bay Garnett, Chloë Sevigny, Isabella Blow, Loulou de la Falaise, and Camille Bidault Waddington.
Do you have any particular dressing philosophies or strategies?
If you're instantly in love with it, just go with that instinct even if the resulting outfit isn't perfect. To have a fear of 'trying things' takes the fun out of fashion for me.
How does living in London influence your style? What do you love/hate about London fashion?
London can sometimes make you feel like you're in a fashion 'rat race,' competing with other people to get to sales the quickest, getting to things before they sell out. It's a city that absorbs a lot of fashion at a very fast pace. Those are probably the same reasons why I love fashion in London as well, though.
Any favorite London shopping haunts you're willing to share?
I shop everywhere and anywhere really, and I try to change my shopping routines regularly so that it doesn't get monotonous. At the moment, I like Bang Bang on Goodge Street, and Berwick Street is a designer consignment store that gets in interesting pieces. Tashi in Kingly Court does really beautiful avant garde-esque clothes, and The Shop on Cheshire Street near Brick Lane is great for unearthing vintage fabrics and trimmings for not a lot of money.
Anything you're coveting right now?
An Anne Valerie Hash soft washed leather ruffled bag, a pair of Givenchy sandals and everything from next season's Nova Dando collection that I saw at a press viewing last week.
If your style was a song, what would it be?
'Changes' by David Bowie.
Opening image by The Face Hunter.
Style Bubble's div'ette dishes her rules of fashion.