The world is hers for the taking and as a stewardess for one of the world’s most glamorous airlines, she has the first pick of fashion offerings. From Paris to Bangkok, Lia literally wears her passport on her sleeve. She’s a fashionista globalista with a keen eye for mix and matching. When I caught up with Lia on a recent layover in gay ol’ Paree it was if she had stepped right off the set of last year’s Pan Am TV series. No flats and comfort gear on this lass, she came to Paris to dress and impress, armed with high heels and a tailored skirt. I praised the effort she put into her layover look. This proves my point that it’s not the sky that’s lost the glamour, it’s the people up in it. I wanted to know her fashion stories and advice so I sat down and had a Fly Style chat with her.
FG: How has being an international stewardess affected your style?
LIA: It’s given me more opportunities to shop all over the world and find unique pieces. I’ve always had a passion for dressing up and good clothes as far back as I can remember! My family couldn’t really afford to go on shopping sprees. My talented tailor saved me! She makes dresses for me till now!
FG: Does your job inspire your fashion?
LIA: I would say wearing a uniform that makes me look like thousands of other girls makes me strive to look different when I’m off duty. So yes it does.
FG: Speaking of your uniform, what’s your favorite part of it?
LIA: Definitely the famous hat and scarf. It spices up the look and makes the girls more elegant and seductive in some way.
FG: Do you dress for the cities you visit?
LIA: I do indeed. I always dress up for Paris. It is an official offense to lack style in the capital of fashion. In other cities like Manchester, jeans and a t-shirt are good enough for a sports pub (unless you’re looking for a football player hubby).
FG: What would would be your style tip for girls who travel a lot?
LIA: Keep one simple outfit but have a few scarfs and pashminas as well as a few pieces of jewelry with you always. This gives you a variety of options within one simple frame.
FG: What’s your inspiration right now and where do you go to find pieces that inspire you?
LIA: My latest passion is vintage. I’m inspired by 1960’s and early 1920’s. So I do a lot online shopping. I do a lot of browsing on Ebay, and lately I have gotten a few amazing pieces in immaculate condition. I’m planning a photo shoot for them now!
FG: Any style icons?
LIA: I Don’t really have one person, but I have collected 100’s of retro photos of pin-up girls, American housewives in their floral frocks and sleek women of 1920’s. I enjoy looking at their outfits, hairstyles and make up and trying to work it it into my own look.
FG: You live in Dubai, there are LOADS of malls and brands there. Where is your favorite place to shop in your city?
LIA: Dubai mall and Mirdif City Center as they are both close to me and you can find some really good pieces there. You just need to know where to look.
FG: Tell us about fashion in Dubai.
LIA: Dubai has very good potential. A lot of Arab women have a passion for fashion! Currently I’m really keen on fashionable hijabi girls! For example I currently follow Basma K. and Winnie Détwa.
(Photos borrowed from Basma K. and Winnie Detwa)
FG: Which part of the world turns on your fashion inspiration the most and how is it different from what you’re used to?:
LIA: You won’t believe but it’s actually Asia. Asian people are not afraid to express themselves through clothes. It’s a lot different where I come from. In Russia clothing serves just its purpose – to cover yourself up and more recently it’s being used to reflect your social status! “Brandomania” is a common Russian shortfall. It has to be pricey and have a name on it. I don’t agree with this fully. I love to combine branded pieces with no names and mass market.
FG: Which Asian city will we find you with the most shopping bags?
LIA: BANGKOK is my favorite city to shop! There are SO MANY local talented designers and I have personal list of shops I’ve been keeping for the past five years and it keeps getting better and better.
FG: LIST? I like the sound of this do share!
Sure! In BKK there is a shopping mall called Terminal 21 that’s next to Asoke BTS Station. It’s filled with loads of local Thai brands. It’s a paradise, A MUST VISIT! Even YOU will find a lot of great stuff, as they have a dedicated floor for men.
There’s also a store called Jaspal. It’s like the Thai version of Zara.
My crew hotel is in the Silom area and there is a shop called Jennies Leather Goods in the Silom Village. I like her leather bags, not the replica ones.
My favorite brand for bags in Thailand is CHAT CHAT!
FG: You mentioned small Thai designers, do you have any big names you adore?
LIA: I Don’t really have a preference! Mostly it’s affordable brands. The main thing I do care about it what it’s made of. I prefer natural fabrics. Even if a dress is the prefect fit, if it’s made of polyester I won’t touch it. However, I do have a favorite designer for shoes. Kurt Geiger, all of my shoes come from there, except few pairs. As every other girl I dreamed of owning Louboutins and I recently got two pairs. I still think they are beautiful shoes, but I have to admit they are not comfortable enough for me 🙁
FG: Lia it’s been really fun picking your fashion savvy brain. Thank you for taking time out of you busy jet setting life to have a style chat with me. Is there any final advice you want to give to my readers?
LIA: Remember when you’re traveling you’re making memories for life. You don’t want to look back on those memories and think “what was I thinking wearing that.” You know the saying “Be the change you want to see in the world?” Well, that’s what I keep in mind. I enjoy sitting at a cafe in Paris sipping my coffee watching men and women dressed in their best strolling the streets. So I too need to play that part for someone doing the very same thing when I’m walking down the street. Don’t be one of those people that thinks just because I’m in another city and nobody knows me here I can wear whatever. It’s fun to dress up and match the glamorous streets you walk on layovers or holidays.