After I spied an Instapic of Alison Wu in the feed of local designer Laurs Kemp, I was fully convinced of her Sister Style status by her deft pairing of a Laurs banana print tank with a pair of citrus print swim shorts and kitschy pineapple bottle complete with wacky straw for good effect. That was all I saw in the tightly cropped pic but it was enough and I knew Alison belonged here. One of us, one of us …
Seriously though, not only does Alison have a fashionable job as copywriter for local sustainable clothing line Nau, but she’s got an undeniable eye for styling her collection of minimal vintage and indie designer pieces with serious sartorial skill. No detail is left out, from her modern bob to her spot-on yellow pedi – which even in it’s slightly chipped state seemed deliberately un-perfect so as to balance everything.
Stopping by her enviably white and bright new North Portland home, I was delighted to meet her sweet pup, Tilly, and lovely cat, Rue. After a house tour and some major fawning over Tilly, Alison and I got down to the hard work portion of this job. Except it really isn’t hard work when you’ve got an awesome model like Alison –
VGS: What is your first fashion related memory?
A: Dancing around the living room to Fleetwood Mac dressed in a black turtleneck and black leggings, channelling Stevie Nicks. Age 7.
VGS: How does working for a sustainable clothing company impact your personal style?
A: Well besides getting a very generous clothing allowance every year, working for Nau has made me selective in the brands I support and the fabrics I choose to wear. I also appreciate attention to detail in construction way more than I used to.
VGS: Which one item can you never have too many of?
A: Shoes. Even when I’m traveling I always pack at least 4 pairs. The right shoes make the look.
VGS: Which designers / brands / shops should readers be checking out?
A: I am really into Kaarem right now. Simple, elegant with just the right amount of curiosity. Locally, Laurs Kemp is killing it right now. I want everything in her collection. Also, Elizabeth Suzann and Black Crane have been on steady rotation in my closet for the past year or so. My favorite stores in Portland are Backtalk and Palace. Katie (Freedle of Backtalk) has done an amazing job of curating a collection of new and vintage pieces that work so well together. The new location on the westside is exquisite.
For more of Alison’s sparkling-like-a-gold-chain style, follow her @alison__wu on Instagram.