Fashionable men and women can be found all over St. Louis. Many of them have taken up blogging about their lives, about fashion and about everything in between. One of these fabulous bloggers we tracked down is 22-year-old Alex Huntley. Her blog, Cooper Tee, covers anything from art to fashion to her boyfriend, whom she refers to as Wonderboy. Currently, Alex is a student at Washington University getting her degree in history, and she recently interned at the Contemporary Art Museum in their marketing and PR department. Here are some excerpts from our Q&A.
Q: What is your favorite place to shop in St. Louis? A: Valerie Mills for their unique labels and great atmosphere.
Q: What is your favorite trend of the season? A: Right now it would be roughly-cut, semi-precious stones. (Like this Erica Weiner ring and these Unearthern necklaces). Actually, any piece of jewelry that looks a little rough or beat-up. Vintage rings and big men’s watches. I tend to pile on the rings and bracelets, sometimes even wearing two watches together. And definitely mix up the metals; gold, silver, oxidized iron or brass… anything goes. From the runway, I am (still) loving the look of over-exaggerated shoulders (a la Balmain, of course) and very architectural pieces. For summer, I am living in distressed denim and loose, drape-y tees and tanks. I like a neutral palette with splashes of neon right now.
Q: Who is your biggest fashion inspiration? A: It changes constantly. I tend to look at other blogs and bloggers for inspiration. I adore Jane and Judy Aldridge (of Sea of Shoes andAtlantis Home, respectively) for their amazing vintage and shoe collections, as well as their ability to put outfits together that are always so interesting and full of unexpected details.
Q: What made you want to start a blog? A: Again, I was always looking at other blogs and bloggers for inspiration, ideas and DIYs. Then moving to St. Louis forced me find new places to shop. As I started exploring the city and experimenting with my own style, the blog became a creative outlet for what I was doing, wearing, experiencing, etc. Cooper Tee has become a place for me to post, not only about fashion, but about all sorts of other random, stylish things. It might be a house, a piece of furniture or an artist that I am particularly gravitating towards at the time.
Q: What are the places in St. Louis every visitor should visit? A: Not to negate all the wonderful cultural attractions, but I have been SO pleasantly surprised with St. Louis’ restaurants. I love Robustin Webster Groves, especially now that it’s patio weather. Their wine list makes me feel like a kid in a candy store, and the tasting plates are the perfect portion for one or two to share. For Mexican food, hands-down the best guacamole and margaritas are at Pueblo Solisdown on Hampton. And, for oysters, go to Herbie’s in the Central West End. Walk off those calories at Laumeier Sculpture Park, it is an absolutely wonderful place to waste away an afternoon.
Q: Who is your favorite designer? A: Ugh, can I only have one? I guess I would have to say Alexander Wang for the versatility and edginess of his pieces and SS09’s use of pinks, teals and sorbet colors.
Q: What can you not leave the house without? A: Two thin gold braided rings from Huffords. They are delicate and classic, though they can be layered with anything for different looks. They were a gift, and I wear them always.
Q: What advice would you have for someone wanting to start a fashion blog? A: Don’t start a “fashion blog”. If you have a cool personal style or love clothes, then that is going to come out in your blog no matter what. Don’t try to mimic the fashion blogs out there right now; simply do your thing and the rest (with a lot of trial and error) will fall into place. And, you really better love it because it takes a lot more work than you’d expect.
Q: How would you describe your personal style? A: This is an interesting question because it changes so much, depending on my mood, what I am doing or where I am going. Also, I am one of those people who sincerely believes that a pair of jeans will be sad if you don’t wear them as often as the others, so I always try to give all of the things in my closet a fair rotation. Whether I am dressing in vintage, classic or edgy pieces, I like the element of surprise… give me the unexpected any day over a perfectly-coordinated outfit.
Q: What is your favorite city to visit? A: Chicago, because I used to live there. And Barcelona, because I adore everything about that city – the architecture, the food, the weather, the people and the siesta!
Q: You mention your mom a lot in your blog. Was she a strong influence on your fashion sense? A: My mom is one of those people who is a little bit crazy, but in the best way possible. She works in the arts, soas I childI was always going to whatever new exhibit, play, opera or symphony that was in town. She also made sure I had every opportunity to travel and see the world. My upbringing was probably a little different than a lot of people‘s, but I feel like it worked. She taught me to always have my eyes open and to thirst for things to “feed the soul”, as she would say (yes, she’s a little melodramatic as well). She has a love for sequins and big chunky jewelry, which definitely has been passed down to me.
Q: Why is St. Louis fabulous? A: Even though I am not from St. Louis, the people I love are here. I wouldn’t be anywhere else.