We love the world through the eyes of Natalie Joos: witty, unexpected and always with a vintage twist. The stylist extraordinaire took our Spring Collection to L.A., where she found herself some It girls and fabulous locales and started snapping away. Over the next few weeks we’ll be revealing Natalie’s gorgeous, sun-soaked images, so check back, and read more about the shoot, inspiration, and tips for wearing these Spring styles now.
Tell us about your inspiration for the shoot.
The inspiration started with the clothes. Diane and her team had envisioned this collection in Saint-Tropez. It was for the fun, chic and relaxed girl on the French Riviera. Names like Brigitte Bardot came to mind and I felt it had something ‘50s too. Since I was going to be in Los Angeles, I imagined this collection could work very well in a pastel-colored environment, with a retro twist. When my producer showed me the Pink Motel, I know we had to shoot there. The rest was all improv.
And how did you decide on the girls?
I always have my ear on the ground for the new It girls. In each city I visit and want to shoot, I find out from reliable resources, in this case one of my previous muses and local LA girl, who the cool kids on the block are. Then I do my research online and on Instagram and start to form my own image of them. Z Berg looked really fun and photogenic and I loved the fact that she was in a band. She suggested to shoot with her friend Paige, a very pretty girl who happens to be dating one of Z’s exes. I loved the organic nature of the process. As soon as we spoke on the phone I knew we’d have fun together. They had the right kind of energy and enthusiasm.
What about the Spring Collection drew you to an old hotel in LA?
We had a lot of different ideas before we landed on the hotel. We thought about a house with a pool, or the beach, or the Venice canals. But in the end we thought the colors would pop best at the Pink Motel. For me the collection has a retro feel, a little bit ‘60s at times, sometimes ‘70s, and I thought it worked well against an old pastel backdrop like that. It would also give the shoot that Cali feeling.
How does New York vintage differ from California vintage?
California vintage is more grunge and bohemian. New York is a little bit more structured I would say. But in the end every vintage store caters to the same customer. We all love old things and we wear them all over the world.
What was your favorite piece to work with?
I am really smitten with the little bralets. They’re so pretty and sexy!
Diane loves an unexpected twist, and your work seems to capture that so well. What can you tell us about the art of the unexpected?
In order to keep people interested you have to keep changing and moving forward. People get so bored of repetition. They want to be surprised, or shocked, or simply amazed. I am not a fan of the banal. I am always looking for new ways to not only inspire myself but also others. Fashion is about experimenting and about having fun. And if you want to keep people’s attention, you have to keep them on their toes.
Travel is such a frequent part of your work…what are your travel essentials?
I am a little bit of a travel expert now, I think. Packing happens on autopilot. Foremost I need earplugs! Can’t sleep without them. A moisturizing mask. A good book. My favorite sunglasses. My running shoes and gear.
Finally, for those of us for whom Spring has arrived but it’s still freezing, any tips on how to wear the things we love now?
The key is cashmere, on your bare skin. It should be your first layer: a tight fitting cashmere long sleeve T-shirt. I guarantee nothing gets through. I wore a white one under my Spring shirt for the DVF show, and it became super ‘70s like that. I wore “summer” pants during the Fall shows but I wore wool tights under them. Always a hat, to prevent your body from cooling down. Gloves. And at least 3 layers.
Winter doesn’t get to me at all.