At first glance, Danielle Gray, 31, doesn’t look her age.
When I spotted her hanging out with friends in the Plaza-Midwood area, she wore her hair in a fabulous retro-styled updo that reminded me of someone right out of the 1950’s. I could tell she enjoys fashion and likes to make a statement with her clothing.
Gray is an urban planner/consultant. A newcomer to Charlotte, here’s what she had to say about her personal style:
Q. How would you describe your style? I would describe my style as “urban chic.” It’s funky and hip yet polished and sophisticated.
Q. Where do you shop? I shop at local boutiques like Lotus on East Boulevard, vintage thrift stores and department stores.
Q. Are you into specific designers?
I don’t keep up with fashion designers. Simply put, if I like something I buy it. It doesn’t matter to me if it’s Gucci or Isaac Mizrahi.
Q. What item in your wardrobe can’t you live without?
I absolutely cannot live without my accessories. My friends call me the Accessory Queen. I love scarves, hats, earrings, necklaces and coats/jackets. I consider coats/jackets an accessory because they accentuate your outfit. They come in a variety of different lengths, cuts, fabrics and colors.Therefore, it is important to choose the right one to wear because a coat/jacket can easily make or break your outfit.
Q. What’s your latest fashion obsession?
I am obsessed with broaches. They are classic, sophisticated and create a very polished look.
Q. What’s your latest splurge?
I recently purchased a pair of red patent leather Mary Jane-style shoes. I love those shoes because they are so versatile. They have a 2-inch heel and look fabulous with skinny jeans, skirts and slacks.
Q. What style would you not be caught wearing?
I would not be caught dead wearing pants or a skirt suit with tennis shoes.
I would not wear clothing that’s too flashy with the designer’s name plastered all over it. I also dislike wearing the same trends that everyone else is wearing. It’s good to have your staple pieces. But I don’t like looking like everyone else. I try to add my own unique “flava” to a particular style to make it my own.
Q. What are the names of the beauty products you use?
I am into natural skin and hair care products that are free of harsh chemicals. I use shea butter and black soap on my skin and Taliah Waajid products on my locs. I do facial masks with honey and oatmeal. I love MAC makeup products, particularly the Clear Lip Glass.
Q. What perfume?
I recently discovered Pink Sugar by Aquolina.
Q. What style rules do you live by?
Fashion should be fun. It expresses to people who you are without saying a word. Don’t be too matchy-matchy. Layering different fabrics is a great look for fall/winter. I love to mix a bold color with a cute pattern.
What looks right on one person may not look right on you. Therefore it is important to know your body so you can pick pieces that accent your shape. Also know what colors work best with your complexion and hair color.