When the street style moment exploded, one of the women who made the movement was Anna dello Russo.
The Italian editor-at-large of Japanese Vogue exploded onto the scene in a riot of maximal fashions, changing several times a day to reflect the shows she was attending. Thigh-skimming hemlines, floor-skimming sequinned gowns (at 9am), statement heels in every colour of the rainbow and major hats. Maximalism is AdR’s signature look. The fashion chameleon realised the boost that having her photo taken outside the shows could give to her career, taking her from respected stylist to mega-influencer (she created a capsule collection for H&M in 2012.)
GLAMOUR sat down with AdR in London, where she was giving a talk on her career to fashion students at Instituto Marangoni. We meet in a grey carpeted meeting room on the last day of London Fashion Week. Anna is behind a chair, changing into a black cashmere crew neck, tracksuit bottoms and blindingly white sneakers – pared back compared to the head to toe Richard Quinn look she wore to the designer’s show the night before. Becoming a street style star was a calculated move. “Street style was a very big opportunity for me to work with myself and my point of view of fashion,” she reveals in rich, heavily accented English. “Before, I was working on a corporate point of view but street style lets you express a unique, personal view. But both ways are good because both celebrate fashion.”
And fashion is AdR’s lifeblood. She has a separate apartment, just for her clothes. “Although now it’s pretty empty.” (Anna gave a huge part of her collection to charity two years ago.) “I love all people who celebrate fashion – the women in Doha or Dubai are crazy for fashion and I love crazy for fashion!” And while the Middle East may resonate with Anna’s obsession, London is always a pull. “I love London because there is so many young designers. Also I love the street style – the people on the street. How they interpret fashion is very strong and British style always inspires me. The mix of cultures is really interesting, more than other places.”
And how exactly does Anna create the perfect street style moment? “For me I am always thinking in the way of taking a picture and choosing the clothes to make a picture. If you put an outfit that is extravagant it makes a very strong street style picture and second I am from the south of Italy and we are very confident in breaking rules in fashion. I am very over the top! We have this kind of confidence and we always have fun. If you dress up, you dress up seriously. I like to do my makeup, hair. This is my culture!” Although this season, less outfit changes and less shows are on the agenda. “I prefer to attend less shows, to edit better and not change like crazy – now I am more conscious. I really like to go to the shows but I need to put my energy in a different way. To reinvent is a lot of energy.”
If she’s up for editing, cruelly I ask Anna to choose one designer to wear for the rest of her life, “No, no, no! I can’t! I cannot see me in one thing. I am totally unfaithful. When I like one thing, the day after I like something else. Fashion is like necklaces of pearls – you cannot isolate one thing or the whole thing goes… pouf.” Even on holiday Anna’s look is pretty extra – her summer break saw her lounging in a high cut gold one-piece (although she thinks it was pretty basic.). “When I’m on holiday it’s hot! I like to spend my time like Mogwli (from The Jungle Book.) I take few clothes. I take my jewellery. I wear a white boyfriend t-shirt to sleep. You don’t need anything else! Basta. [It’s enough.]”
With minimalism sweeping the catwalks – it’s set to be a major trend for Spring 2020 – perhaps pared back is the new black? As one of the globe’s most inspired stylists, AdR is always ahead of the game… Although we’ll never get tired of seeing the fashion pack on parade so here are five new street style icons to follow…
Kim Bui Kollar
Kim Bui Kollar’s style is a masterclass in layering and brings into focus all the details the street style photographers love to shoot. Corset belts over shirts, one-shouldered puffer coats with bra tops – Kim’s style is brave and inspiring.
Anna Rosa Vitiello
The stylist and consultant has a decadent wardrobe of Eighties-inflected power pieces and – as co-founder of accessories site &Finally – always wears a divine selection of statement shoes, boujee bags and drool-worthy jewels.
Power trouser suits, an excellent array of co-ords and bold prints make the Special Projects Director at US Harper’s Bazaar stand out on the street style scene.
Megan Reynolds, who works at matchesfashion, has a polished, pared back, sleek and chic look – which stands out in a sea of wannabes wearing lairy prints, wild colour and OOT accessories.
Fashion consultant and personal shopper with some very desirable clients, Bettina is who the style set turn to when they’re desperate to find the season’s sold out It items – and ideas on how to wear them.