An Interview with Darling Magazine's CEO, Sarah Dubbeldam
Who understands Jackie's mission quite like CEO of Darling Magazine, Sarah Dubbeldam herself? If there is someone we admire in terms of style, worldview and general persona, she is our girl. At Jackie, we were very excited to sit down and learn from the best of the best. Discover more about the unbreakable bond between Confidence & Styling in this exclusive interview with Sarah Dubbeldam.
How would you describe your personal style?
"My personal style is a mix of Scandinavian and Parisian aesthetic. I really love simple silhouettes and black and white—plus a little feminine flair—a ruffle, a light floral print. A simple outfit with a pop of color like a red lip is definitely my go-to. I don't feel pressure to follow a lot of trends, but instead like to have a paired down wardrobe—which is also a French concept—having a twenty-item wardrobe of really nice, staple pieces that mix and match."
How did you arrive at your understanding of your own personal style?
"I have a few friends that work in fashion. Maybe five years ago, they came over to my closet and made me pull out everything and put it on the bed, even my pajamas and my simple white t-shirts, and they made me try on every single thing I owned. They told me what fit me and what didn't fit. We identified what my favorite pieces were and they were like, "This is your jam. You need to take these pieces and find things to match this and that's your style." Having them over is one of my favorite activities and they are really funny and honest. They also tasked me with making personal style “mood boards” so I do that each season and it helps me stay consistent with the look I’m going for."
What impact does your style have on your personal life, your work and your worldview?
"I think my style shapes so much of who I am. Personally, I love fashion and self-expression. Shopping is one of my favorite things to do on the side, even if I don't buy anything, just looking and touching colors and prints helps me feel more artistic. I think it also affects my work in that I have to make a lot of decisions around fashion. When I'm on-set for a photo shoot, I work with a stylist to choose all the outfits. They pair ten to fifteen looks for me and I go through and say what I do or don't like and want to shoot. My personal taste definitely shapes the aesthetic of the visuals that come out of Darling."
Who are you style icons? Where do your source your style inspiration?
"I source most my style inspiration from trend setting creative agencies that represent top photographers, makeup artists and stylists. My favorite of all time is an agency called LUNDLUND, @lundlundagency, out of Scandinavia; their artists are so innovative. I'm also on Instagram a lot; for fashion inspiration I like @garancedore, @pernilleteisbaek, @vikyandthekid, and @thesartorialist."
How do you define confidence and what role does styling play in your understanding of self-confidence?
"I believe that confidence comes when it’s paired with self-respect and the worth you place on yourself. It might sound silly, but when I decided to move away from buying fast fashion to more high-end and quality pieces, I felt something shift in the value I placed on myself as well. I felt more classic, more confident in my being. I might only be able to buy one thing a month, but I absolutely love the pieces I own and the fabric is beautiful and it makes me feel strong when I wear it. I think having less, but more things you love is really important. I also believe from a strictly styling sense that you have to wear clothes that fit your body well. Get rid of clothes that don't really fit you at the moment and don’t keep them saying, "Oh, one day I'll fit into that." Then you’re always wishing your body was different; it’s better to embrace who you are in each season. You just want to have things that you want to wear right now and that you’re excited to put on. I get rid of clothes all the time; I sell clothes at Wasteland in LA. I mainly just sell and trade designer items; I’m very choosy about the new items I buy. I'm just constantly thinking, "What makes me feel good? What makes me feel artistic?"
What recommendations do you have for women who aren't 100% confident in their style?
"Spend some time on Pinterest or on Instagram and make a PDF or a Keynote of images you really like. Then, meet with a stylist or a friend who you feel like has a sense of style and show them what you like and ask them to help you shop to achieve that look. Ask them to come over and go through your closet and get rid of everything and help you make a list of things you should buy. That's really fun to do. I've gone shopping with stylists before and it's just amazing how it opens up your view of how you feel about your style and helps you identify more of what looks good on your body type. You have to start with some inspiration because other people can't tell you what you like unless you have a little foundation to show them!