The Only Way Is Essex isn't known for its fashion hits, but bubbly blonde Lydia Bright has carved a place as the show's style icon. Defying the Essex girl stereotype, she's rejected the fake tan, hair extensions and cleavage flashing in favour of a classic, sophisticated look inspired by her fashion heroes from Audrey Hepburn to Grace Kelly. Following in the footsteps of fellow reality star Lauren Conrad, Arg's former misses has channelled her sartorial know-how into a debut collection, Lydia Rose Bright, and it's jam packed full of festive favourites from cute lace dresses and 20's flapper frocks to vampy Little Black Dresses and sexy red body-cons. And not a boob tube in sight!
Grazia Daily: How do you think your style has changed since TOWIE startet?
Lydia Bright: I think my sense of style has remained the same. I grew up around fashion – my mum was a fashion writer and my nan was a fashion designer. As soon as I got pocket money I was always saving up to buy clothes. My makeup look has changed quite a bit though as I learnt that less is more – I used to pile it on too much. But I always loved vintage shopping and the ‘50s era of fashion.
Grazia Daily: Who inspires your style?
Lydia Bright: Hollywood icons like Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe and Grace Kelly. I’ve got modern icons like Carrie Bradshaw and Olivia Palermo – who is also quite a classic dresser.
Grazia Daily: Which high street shops do you rely on?
Lydia Bright: Miss Selfridge and River Island are probably my faves.
Grazia Daily: And who are your favourite designers?
Lydia Bright: If I had the money I would buy everything from Christian Dior because I love the elegant clothes – and I also love Chanel for all the tweed jackets and pencil skirts.
Grazia Daily: What about department stores?
Lydia Bright: Harrods and Selfridges are always a treat!
Grazia Daily: What’s been your most extravagant purchase?
Lydia Bright: Probably my shoes – I spend quite a lot on shoes, as I feel great when I’m in heels. I’ve got a couple of pairs of Louboutins and a pair of Charlotte Olympia platforms. I keep them in their dust bags!
Grazia Daily: What can we expect from your new fashion collection?
Lydia Bright: I went to quite a lot of London Fashion Week shows like PPQ and Felder Felder to research for my collection saw that lace and velvet were big trends for Autumn/ Winter 2012. I wanted to stick to my style and also feature the 1920s as The Great Gatsby is having a moment. There are some Christmas pieces too for party season. The first collection is only 10 pieces, as I wanted to test the water but I’m already designing my Spring/ Summer 2013 range.
Grazia Daily: What's your fail safe outfit?
Lydia Bright: A black dress is always safe when you’re in a rush. They are perfect for saving you if you need something for a night out. I’ve got several in my collection.
Grazia Daily: What are your top tips for feeling confident?
Lydia Bright: Always overdress as you’ll feel confident and stand out.
Grazia Daily: What's your guilty fashion pleasure?
Lydia Bright: A pair of ballet pumps. I try and wear heels all the time but every now and then you’ll see a pair of ballet pumps popping out of my bag.
Lydia Rose Bright Limited Edition is available at Lipstickboutique.co.uk, newlook.com, very.co.uk, bellasorella.co.uk, and lipsy.co.uk.