Sarah Staudinger is the type of girl you think only exists in images from the past, but in reality, she has all the sweet elegance of a 1970s princess (a la Caroline of Monaco or Jackie O) with a Californian spirit of modern day. It’s no surprise she counts Brianna and Djuna to be her close friends, likeminded souls seem to attract each other – as do those of the same height, and in this case, three towering beauties!
The perfect Venice Beach bungalow she shares with her boyfriend George, and yorkie called Flea, filled with just the right mix of eclectic vintage furniture and soft-hued walls, is the ultimate backdrop for her wardrobe. She wears her own line, appropriately called STAUD, head-to-toe, but that doesn’t mean her pieces from Prada and Gucci get lost the mix. Especially those dreamy Céline earrings she pairs with, well, pretty much everything…
Describe your style in three words.
Chic art teacher.
If you had to pick one outfit to wear everyday, what would it be?
I love to wear jumpsuits because it’s a whole outfit in one and you can play a lot with what you put under and over them. Still trying to figure out how to make one that you don’t have to get fully naked to use the restroom in, though.
Your collections are full of vintage-inspired yet classic styles, and that same aesthetic seems to be present in your wardrobe. Where did your love of the good ol’ days come from?
I love things that were made beautifully and I love a story. Clothing was made with much more detail and care before the fast fashion era. You also feel different in vintage. You don’t know where it came from, necessarily, but you know there’s a story behind it and that you’re adding to it. You probably won’t see anyone else with it and that makes it even more special. I feel more of a sense of ownership with my vintage pieces than any of my designer or new items.
How has living in both New York & LA, as well as spending time in Sayulita, influenced your style?
In Mexico you wear the least. It’s about one chic simple piece, and maybe a few statement accessories. New York you wear the most. LA is somewhere in the middle. It’s pretty perfect. I do miss being a bundle sometimes though. Outerwear is my favorite and there’s only a few days of the year it’s cold enough to wear a coat here.
The cat eye seems to be your signature beauty look. What made you draw that first perfectly angled line?
Growing up I used to look at old pictures of my mom and godmother, Cher, on tour in the 60’s. They nailed it. I think that’s where it first started. Theirs was a lot more intense though, they would do bottom and top and even some curly q’s on the ends.
Do you have a fashion muse?
It changes from collection to collection but right now I’m hunting down every one of Carolyn Bessette Kennedy’s outfits. I also love Slim Keith on vacation – having just come back from Mexico.
When it comes to style, what’s more important: comfort, beauty, or innovation?
Innovation. I always start getting dressed thinking “comfort first” but then it just gets weirder from there. Cat eye helps with the beauty thing, I guess, and keeps it consistent.
Your height doesn’t seem like a hinderance or as though it gets in the way of finding pieces, you always look so chic. Any styling advice for people who have a hard time dressing for their extra tall frame?
Embrace it. If pants are too short I go with it. I wear long jackets a lot which accentuates my height. Lots of layers look great on tall people. You can get away with so much because there’s more of you. I will say I have very large feet, one huge con of being 5’11. Still haven’t learned my lesson though. This last fashion week I literally destroyed my poor dogs because of ill-fitting shoes. Because you’re in Paris you want to walk everywhere despite the semi uncomfortable feeling. Then by day three you’re throbbing and getting a car to take you everywhere. Guess the advice here is walking is fun but is it worth it? Or wear comfortable shoes?
How has your style evolved over the years?
Art and culture have really influenced my style over the years. While art teacher is kind of joke, it’s also true. I become inspired by an artist and their life and I think that has a lot of influence over not only my day to day style, but my designs. I definitely went through a lot of distinct phases in my fashion history though.
Phases as follows:
Very feminine as a young girl
High school was “cool” and casual
Then fun and flirty
Then very fashion- not in a good way- a lot of like Henrik Vibskov vibes which for me did not work
Party girl- way too much makeup, and dresses that were way too short
Single girl chic
“Now I’m in a relationship” chic
Favorite vintage spot in LA?
Collection in Echo Park. The owner Elizabeth has phenomenal taste and has an epic 90’s Prada collection, as well as the best vintage denim in the game. We recently began carrying Collection vintage in our showroom in the Arts District. It was difficult to find vintage to carry in our space but Collection is so well curated and hangs so nicely with Staud pieces.
Light blue skirt + top, Staud ; Shoes, Gucci ; Earrings, Celine ; Stripe top, Staud ; Red full skirt , vintage ; Sandals, custom made with Rainbows ; Denim ensemble, Staud ; Sandals, No.21 ; Sunglasses, vintage ; Bag, vintage ; White blouse, RTF ; Pants, Celine ; Slides, Prada ; White dress with belt, The Row ; Slides, intentionally blank ; Sunglasses, Celine