The Alexander Wang-coined, Who What Wear-celebrated phrase "model off duty" is generally accepted as shorthand for a sort of sexy, semi-disheveled, downtown look, but not every runway regular opts for this stripped-down style. Au contraire, dear readers! While slightly grungy outfits are a backstage certainty, some high-profile faces prefer to present themselves in a more polished way. Just take a look at today's story subject-the captivating Jourdan Dunn-for example. The nearly 19-year-old British model favors contemporary updates of classic pieces and never fails to impress with the way she grounds girly silhouettes with down-to-earth accessories. In short, Dunn's Hepburn-meets-hippie fashion sensibilities are definitely delightful and certainly worth showcasing.
Aside from her overall elegance and refined taste, two aspects of Dunn's personal style really stand out: the way she embraces vivid hues and her finesse with texture. While most of her contemporaries shy away from the full spectrum of colors, Dunn dives in with gusto. Of course, the boldness is always balanced by simple solid pieces in black or brown. Specifically, when composing her outfits, Dunn diffuses every bright article by adding at least three neutral accents.
For example, at the S/S 09 shows in Paris, Dunn chose a rich blue, patterned Anna Sui Flutter Sleeve Dress (above, second from left) as the foundation of her look. She added a fringed pair of Minnetonka Moccasin Woodstock Boots ($80) and a braided skinny belt, both in a honey-colored shade of suede, plus a simple black shoulder bag, resulting in a casually cool outfit. While it's hard to replicate Dunn's exact dress, Silence & Noise's Silk Print T-Shirt Dress ($68) has a similar vibe, as does Custo Barcelona's 70s Print Sundress ($90). Just cinch in your frock with a slim belt, like Jack Rabbit Collection's Aspen in the 80s Belt ($164) or Urban Outfitter's Skinny Braided Leather Belt ($24), to complete this well-balanced ensemble.
That same fashion-show season, Dunn was snapped en route to another runway wearing a variation on the aforementioned technique. Rather than reaching for tan accent pieces, she paired a hot magenta mini dress (far left) with all-black accessories instead. Through this savvy styling, Dunn managed to both emphasize and subdue the shocking shade. She wisely chose a short shift dress (the simple design and brief hemline keep the intense color from overwhelming her lithe frame), and kept the rest of her look quite sober. Try your own version with American Apparel's Interlock Asymmetrical Dress ($42) in raspberry, or, if you prefer a spicy red, check out the Fine Jersey Racerback Tank Dress ($32). Either option will look smashing paired with your favorite dark accessories, like Wooden Ships' Sophie Beret ($24).
In addition to this balancing act, Dunn also incorporates a dash of texture into almost every outfit, such as the fantastic fringed skirt she wore during a recent fashion week in Milan (second from right). By paying attention to different fabrics and finishes-such as the tiered suede tassels on her skirt and the slight sheen of her patent bag and ballet flats-she makes this uncomplicated outfit interesting. (Plus, the added pop of her purple Helene Berman trench doesn't hurt either!) Though Dunn's exact ASOS Leather Tassel Mini is no longer available, you can add a little nuance to your own outfit with Mink Pink's Lone Ranger Suede Skirt ($310).
It's also worth noting that even when Dunn dresses down, she still manages to look refined. Take today's final outfit (far right), which she wore on the streets of Milan last year, for example. Though she's completely casual in suede skimmers and a bomber jacket, the slim proportions and harmonious hues make it a sleek look. If you'd like to create a similarly neat ensemble, we suggest starting with 6126's Extra Long Legging ($83) in indigo denim. Add your favorite graphic tee in a corresponding color, a snug leather or leather-like jacket, such as Silence & Noise's Faux Leather Bomber ($138), and your favorite flats. Dunn likes Minnetonka's Suede Skimmer Moc ($48) and we do too!
All photos, from ImaxTREE.