Fashion vs. Style: Who’s Your Icon?

Gwen Stefani in Vogue Magazine January 2013

The terms “fashion” and “style” are often used synonymously, but do they really mean the same thing? When it comes to blogging, I certainly don’t think it does. Those who post their outfits daily are style bloggers, whereas Aesthete is a fashion blog because I focus on the latest collections and trends. It is this basic difference that I use to distinguish who, in my opinion, is a fashion vs. a style icon.

There are two different kinds of fashion icons. The first takes a long time to become – you must prove your look stands the test of time. Thus, when we hear the term, we think of the two great Hepburns, Twiggy, and others, women who have worn beautiful clothing in their proper time, set trends and followed them religiously, women whose sartorial choices are reworked each season in designer’s collections (i.e. the little black dress a la Holly GoLightly). Second, there are those who have had unforgettable fashion moments like Madonna, Grace Jones, and dare I be so presumptuous, eventually Lady Gaga.

Style, on the other hand, is something you can’t quite put your finger on. It’s the perfect mix of a well-dressed woman with a dose of confidence, an expression of herself rather than that of the clothing. Impalpable and utterly desirable. It doesn’t always mean being trendy, it simply means being yourself.

So with that said, I present to you my ultimate style icon: Gwen Stefani.

Gwen Stefani covers January 2013 Vogue Magazine

She’s not what most would call a “classic,” but she always looks damn good no matter what she wears. It helps that she’s on the cover of this month’s Vogue  (article here) dressed head to toe in my favorite designers (Saint Laurent Paris Spring 2013 clothing and Alexander Wang heels). Gwen is my style icon because everything she wears and does is 100% Gwen, she doesn’t dress for other people and she certainly doesn’t care whether you like her crop top and plaid pants or not.

Below are some great moments in Gwen’s style history, along with some of my favorite street style shots.

Gwen Stefani Style

Gwen Stefani Style

Gwen Stefani Style

Gwen Stefani Style

Gwen Stefani Style

Gwen Stefani Style

Gwen Stefani Style

Gwen Stefani Style

Gwen Stefani Style

Gwen Stefani Style

Who’s your style icon?


12 thoughts on “Fashion vs. Style: Who’s Your Icon?

  1. Hope Walker (@HopelessAnorak) says:

    The fist name that pops into my head when I think of my style icon would have to be Mary Kate Olsen. I’ve admired her style since I was an early teen and she undoubtedly dresses for herself. I’m no sure why I love Mary Kate’s style more than Ashley’s… I just do 🙂

    Brilliant post!

  2. Donna says:

    I’ve like Gwen since the early No Doubt days. She just keeps getting more admirable, too! And since I used to live in Orange County, CA, where she grew up, I feel a kinship with her. She’s a perfect choice for a style icon. Love her!

  3. susan says:

    I00% agree with what you’re saying about fashion and style and icons…everything! People tend to get so wrapped up in all the noise they can’t even distinguish the difference. Personally, Gwen hasn’t been on my radar, but i can totally agree with what you’re saying! And I loved the pictures you selected to share!

  4. Angelina says:

    Your writing is so true! I never before thought about distinguishing “fashion” icon from “style” icon, and Gwen Stefani is a perfect example. I appreciate the enlightening!

  5. Anna Elizabeth says:

    I absolutely love Gwen on the cover of Vogue! She is fantastic. And your reflection on the difference between fashion and style is so interesting and true! I live by Coco Chanel’s words, “Fashion changes; style is eternal.” How fitting! Great post.


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