Couple We Love: Sissy Sainte-Marie and Eddie Chacon

We’ve got a serious couple crush on this Los Angeles-based duo. They’ve worked with some of our very favorite designers – Shaina Mote, Imago-A, Older Brother, Assembly, VereVerto, Loeffler Randall, Objects Without Meaning – and the coolest magazines like Nylon, Numero, Oyster, Dazed & Confused and Flaunt. And behind the camera they’re just as inspiring. We sat down with power couple stylist Sissy Sainte-Marie and photographer Eddie Chacon to quiz them on their creative process, their style and secrets to a successful marriage.

FIRST, CAN YOU SHARE A LITTLE BACKGROUND ON WHEN YOU GOT MARRIED, WHAT PART OF LA YOU LIVE IN, THE BASICS? We live in Los Feliz and just celebrated our 10 year wedding anniversary.

HOW DID YOU GUYS MEET? At a bar. They didn’t have Tinder back then.

WHAT DO YOU LOVE MOST ABOUT WORKING TOGETHER? We can spend endless hours planning before a shoot. On the other hand, we can choose to be completely spontaneous when we get to set and there’s that trust that it will work because we know one another’s process and vision.

Photographer Eddie Chacon and stylist Sissy Sainte-Marie
Photo by Jeffrey Teng.

DO YOU FIND THAT IN SOME WAY YOU’RE ALWAYS CREATING TOGETHER? DO YOU EVER STEP AWAY FROM THAT PART OF YOUR LIVES? No we never step away. Creating together is a constant part of our relationship.

CAN YOU SHARE SOME SECRETS TO A SUCCESSFUL MARRIAGE? Salt of the earth advice from my grandmother: “Just be good to each other.” And from Eddie’s mom: “When she’s down, you lift her up. When he’s down, you lift him up.” And from Joni Mitchell: “All I really want our love to do is bring out the best in me and in you, too.” With that in mind, we compete to see which of us can be nicer to the other one.

DESCRIBE YOUR PERFECT DAY OR NIGHT TOGETHER IN LOS ANGELES. Not much can compare to a night at home watching Netflix with the fireplace on and our two cats nearby. For daytime, we like a nice long drive out to Malibu or noshing at some of the many new restaurants popping up all over LA.

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SISSY:

TELL OUR READERS MORE ABOUT YOU, HOW YOU BECAME A STYLIST. I left the teaching profession after 10 years. A friend was letting go of her vintage business and I took over her inventory and started slinging rags. I used my vintage to style early shoots for Eddie. One thing led to another and I guess I’m for reals a stylist now.

DO YOU REMEMBER THE MOMENT WHEN YOU FIRST DISCOVERED YOUR LOVE FOR FASHION? No, I can’t remember a specific moment. I just know I compulsively thought about it until I eventually gave myself permission to pursue it as my bread and butter. Not until my late thirties though.

WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR CURRENT SOURCES OF INSPIRATION? Demna Gvasalia these days. And Phoebe Philo eternally. I always love what Christophe Lemaire and Sarah-Linh Tran are doing. And Maryam Nassir Zadeh is still super inspiring.

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Sissy for Shaina Mote SS16.

TELL US ABOUT YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH VINTAGE. Since I spent all those years digging through thrift stores, I no longer enjoy the treasure hunt like I once did. New fashion feels so refreshing to me now. But for vintage, I let other people to the sourcing and I’m happy to pay the markup. I know the time and energy that goes into it.

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PERSONAL STYLE? I wouldn’t know how to describe it. If I see something I love, I say, “That’s so mama.” Whatever that means. I call myself mama. When I was young, I used to pray to be edgy and weird but I’m not edgy and if I’m weird it’s in ways I have little control over. I’m allowing myself to be drawn to what I’m naturally drawn to, which seems to be the conventionally pretty, the ladylike, smart, feminine, timeless things, with some whimsy and rottenness here and there.

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Eddie and Sissy for Oyster Magazine.

BEST STYLE ADVICE YOU’VE EVER RECEIVED? Wear things that look good on you. Like no duh, right, but that’s hard advice to heed when you’re young and figuring it out and want to be everything to everyone. And once when I was younger, I came across the term “mutton dressed as lamb” and that sounded like the most horrific sartorial folly ever. Don’t be THAT person, I thought. I’ve always looked for older women who remain elegant, tasteful, and sexy in a dignified way, and true to themselves, as inspiration.

WHAT’S YOUR GO-TO OUTFIT? I never thought these words would cross my lips (or fingertips) but I’ve become obsessed with jeans and t-shirts. I have moments of pretty dresses and peacocking. I pretty much wear my Vetements jeans and a simple top everyday. But let’s see once summer hits and we’re into triple digits.

DO YOU HAVE ANY STYLE ICONS THAT INFLUENCE YOU? All of them at one time or another. If I can channel a style splice of Sade meets Caroline Bessette-Kennedy, I feel good.

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Eddie and Sissy for Numero Russia.

EDDIE:

WE HEAR YOU WERE IN A BAND? TELL US MORE! I spent most of my life as a musician. My proudest moments being my song “Wounded Bird” that I wrote and sang for the soundtrack to the movie True Romance and my hit song “Would I Lie to You” from my record Charles and Eddie, Duophonic in the early ’90s (yes, I’m a one hit wonder). These things were a boyhood dream come true and I’m still incredibly gracious that these things happened.

HOW DID YOUR CREATIVE WORK EVOLVE OVER THE YEARS? My father used to always say, “Just focus on the rung of the ladder in front of you. One day you’ll look up and be surprised how far you’ve climbed.” I guess this is me. I have just been moment to moment trying my best to say the things I want to say in the way that’s truest to who I am my whole life. I have had tremendous failures and lots of crazy hair-brained endeavors but at the end of the day it has led to a very happy life and a wonderful marriage so I can’t think of a better payoff.

WHAT’S YOUR PROCESS FOR A SHOOT? I try to remain focused on what I’m inspired by personally and how can I contribute or add something to that sauce. I’m not trying to reinvent the wheel but I do aspire to put my own spin on my subject matter. I tell myself, you don’t need a camera to make great photos. I ask myself “What do I want to say?” and then I pick up the camera. I’m realizing my process is mostly cerebral not physical.

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PERSONAL STYLE? I’m not sure I have one. Age-appropriate regular guy? When in doubt, I let Sissy dress me.

Visit sissysaintemarie.com and metropolisofvice.com for more.

Woman We Love: Sanam Miremadi

There’s something about getting to know someone through their work that makes you feel like fast friends when you actually, finally meet. We’ve been admiring Sanam Miremadi’s work for years: from Chloe Touran, her rad plant and crystal sculptures, to Nest Together, a beautiful online journal she co-founded. We got the chance to sit down with her to talk about motherhood, Instagram’s matchmaking ability and style. So of course we had to ask her to share what’s on her shopping list for Spring. Read on, we promise you’ll love her too.

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TELL US MORE ABOUT YOU. Is it bad that the first thing I thought was: “How would I answer this on a dating site?” All you need to know is that I’m funny and a good time. Jokes aside, this is always a hard question for me. I’m easily made uncomfortable when asked to talk about myself and being that I’m fueled by curiosity and the need to create/experience, I have a habit of getting my hands into a bit of everything and I never know where to start. Most importantly, I’d say I’m a mother to two spirited and kind little boys. I’d like to think of myself as someone who is focused on continuous growth and immersed in things that will not only enhance my own being but theirs as well. I grew up in Texas and after graduating from UT Austin, I fell in love with the mountains and water here in the northwest and Seattle has been home since. Along the way I’ve worked in the arts, film, the fashion industry and all aspects of business development. My most recent and rewarding project being NestTogether.com, that I share with my creative partner Kara Town, is where you’d find me now.

WE HEARD YOU MET KARA TOWN THROUGH INSTAGRAM? Yes, I sure do have Instagram to thank for being a cross-continental “best friend” matchmaker of sorts. It all started out quite girly and over a shared love of Dieppa Restrepo shoes. The more we commented and shared back and forth, the more our alignment and appreciation for design, aesthetic and shared passions surfaced. I remember being in a fitting room at Totokaelo and asking her to download an app so we could text, needed her help deciding between Acne sweaters. It’s been years since and we text daily.

HOW DO YOU FIND IT WORKING TOGETHER ACROSS AN OCEAN? We get this question a lot but it’s not as hard as most assume. Of course we would love to be in each other’s physical company and working on projects hands on together vs. correspondence. However, our friendship and partnership simply works, fundamentally built on a shared love, respect and trust for the other. It also transcends distance. The creative experience is such a personal and intimate process, even the most seemingly successful or aligned partnerships can fall flat because of this. I honestly do not think it’s too often you are able to productively share something so personal and when it works you just protect it and make it happen. So I’d say it’s not so much about focusing on the hardship of distance for us and more so that fact that we are so well aligned and productive as a team. And overall our relationship is real. We support and motivate each other but also keep each other grounded and ‘humble’. Humble being of course most effectively achieved when your best friend can openly tell you when you’re being an idiot. With love of course.

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WHERE CAN WE FIND YOU ON YOUR DAYS OFF? Ideally, at a farmer’s market, beach or immersed in botanics with my boys. I do also deeply enjoy exposing the boys to projects, design, nature or new experiences and watching them interact with each other and the experience.

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PERSONAL STYLE? Modern and understated. I gravitate towards pieces and styling that transcend time, trend and even season when possible. Less is always more, and a fan of pulling casual elements together with one great accessory or footwear. Most importantly, I always dress for comfort.

WHAT’S THE BEST STYLE ADVICE YOU’VE EVER RECEIVED? Confidence comes from comfort.

WHO’S YOUR STYLE ICON AND WHY? Sofia Coppola has always been a favorite. But to be honest there are so many confident women who embody an effortless/timeless chic, who causally marry elegance and androgyny.

WHAT ARE YOU MOST LOOKING FORWARD TO IN TERMS OF FASHION FOR SPRING? Breathable and drapey fabrics that allow you to experience the elements.

WHAT’S YOUR GO-TO OUTFIT? Most of my days recently have been spent working from home or running around with the boys. You will always find me in my favorite tee or sweater and messy hair, pulled together with a great wool coat and modern sneaks.

For more with Sanam, visit nesttogether.com and follow @chloetouran.

Check out a few of her favorite designers and shop them below.

Meet stylist and photographer power couple Luisa Rino + Evaan Kheraj

Luisa Rino and Evaan Kheraj are kind of like fashion’s take on a superhero duo. Each of them is an amazing talent in their own right, but together the Canadian photographer and stylist make some serious magic. Collectively and together, the husband and wife team have worked with the likes of Nylon, ELLE, Refinery29, Flare, Nomia, Obakki, the Hudson’s Bay… to name a few. Oh and a few famous faces like Emily Haines, Tom Felton, Evangeline Lilly and Arizona Muse. They recently began splitting time between their hometown of Vancouver and New York City so we caught up with them to find out how they make time for a little romance on two time zones with such crazy schedules. Plus, they spill on their musts in NYC.

HOW DID YOU GUYS MEET?

LUISA: We met in 2003 just after Evaan had graduated from his new media program. I was the fashion editor at NUVO Magazine and he came in to meet about a photography assignment. I didn’t think much past the job assignment but Evaan’s side of the story is much more romantic.

EVAAN: I was working as a video editor at the time and my roommate was working as an events photographer for NUVO. She was moving away to Alberta and asked me if I would want to shoot events. She got me the interview at NUVO. I met with Luisa and showed her my portfolio which consisted entirely of travel images. At that time my dream was to shoot travel stories for National Geographic and I hadn’t the foggiest idea of what the world of fashion entailed. I pretty much fell in love with Luisa the moment I met her. I just remember thinking my portfolio didn’t have a single event photo and that I was probably making a fool of myself. Anyway, I went home that day and told my roommate that I was going to marry Luisa. My roommate laughed and said in my dreams. Well, dreams come true.

WHAT DO YOU LOVE MOST ABOUT WORKING TOGETHER?

LUISA: We both have pretty hectic schedules so the fact that we get to work together means we get to see each other and spend some time together during really busy times. In terms of the final product, there is a level of trust and collaboration when you really know each other. But I would say we feel this way about our crew as well. We’ve all worked together for many years and we understand where to help, how to make something better. It makes for a really supportive atmosphere.

EVAAN: That’s easy, I get to see my wife. I am always happier when she is around. I’m lucky.

WHAT IS THE MOST CHALLENGING PART?

LUISA: I don’t know that I’ve ever thought about that. We resolve any disagreements quite quickly and I have all the confidence there can be in Evaan’s skills and his vision. We’ve worked together a long time now and on so many different projects and problem solved a lot together. He has an incredible sense for what will work and what won’t. We rarely disagree.

EVAAN: I don’t think there are challenges. We work well together and that’s always been the case.

HOW DO YOU LIKE BICOASTAL LIVING?

LUISA: It’s fun, best of both worlds kind of thing. I can only be grateful that we get to experience these two incredible cities regularly.

EVAAN: It’s amazeballs. Vancouver and New York are two world class cities. You have the stunning beauty of the Pacific Northwest and of course in NY there is always something going on. I have learned to sleep on a plane with ease so the time zone shifting doesn’t bother me. You have to go where the work takes you and New York has been an extremely satisfying step in our careers.

TELL US ABOUT YOUR FAVORITE THINGS TO DO WHEN YOU’RE IN NEW YORK CITY. L

LUISA: It’s been there forever but I really like starting a relaxing day at Café Select. Then, because I’m always on the hunt for deals, I’m pretty much scouring the sample sales.

EVAAN: You can almost always find me wandering the halls of the Met on any given weekend or strolling through Central Park. I take my camera everywhere. My days usually begin at Oatmeals in the West Village which is a fabulous breakfast spot. They have every kind of oatmeal under the sun and the staff there makes you feel right at home. They even have a bowl called The Canadian. My job is fairly tough on my back and shoulders so once a week I head on down to Little Italy and get a good ol’ fashioned Chinese Chair Massage at The Relaxing Station. It’s a hole in the wall sandwiched between a mediocre Tourist-alian restaurant and things-your-clueless-aunt-buys souvenir shop. It feels like you are getting mugged while getting the massage but I exit there feeling refreshed and ready to tackle another 20 blocks and at $13 bucks for 15 minutes, it’s easy on the pocket book and keeps me ready for the next shot. The best coffee I have had is at the OST Cafe in the East Village. Best French toast can be had at the Irving Farms Coffee Roasters in the Lower East Side. It’s made with challah bread and it comes dripping with maple syrup, a fork and a big napkin. For dinner hot spots, I am digging Lovely Day in Soho which serves up some amazeballs Thai food.

Check out more work from these two dynamos here: evaan.ca and lizbellagency.com/artists/luisa-rino

Fall shopping tips from Canadian stylist Leila Bani

Keep scrolling when you Google fashion stylist Leila Bani. Her client list includes NYLON, Flaunt, Interview, Hobo, and GQ (to name just a few) and is the mastermind behind rad editorials featuring stars such as Grimes, Ellen Page, Florence the Machine and Kit Harrington (swoon). Every time we check she has new and amazing work to discover and every single link is rife with outfit inspiration. She also happens to be one of the coolest people we know and the contents of her closet is the stuff dreams are made of. We caught up with Leila during a rare moment of down time to quiz her on what we should be buying for fall, her favorite places to shop and why we should be fearless with fashion.

IF WE CAN ONLY BUY ONE THING THIS SEASON, WHAT SHOULD IT BE?
A statement coat will always serve you well. I love the big fluffy ones in faux fur, with lots of texture this season. There’s also some great structure and bohemian inspired styles. But whatever you choose, pare everything else down and let the coat do the talking.

WHERE DO YOU SHOP FOR STANDOUT PIECES?
All of my best pieces are either vintage or by a Japanese designer. I also have a lot of Dries van Noten. It’s a real mixed bag. I have this amazing red coat from Comme des Garçons that is like a piece of Lego. It’s ginormous with all of these cut outs. I love it. I used to shop a lot at Deluxe Junk in Vancouver too. I have so much treasure from there. I found this amazing black velvet, floor length opera coat with a hood there. I miss that place.

WHERE ELSE DO YOU SHOP IN VANCOUVER?
So many places, but definitely love One of a Few, Rebecca Bree and Violet.

WHAT IS THE ONE PIECE OF STYLE ADVICE YOU WOULD GIVE?
I really encourage people to wear whatever they want to wear. I’m asked about fashion rules and trends a lot, but I think everyone should just wear what makes them happy. Find what you love and go with it. That’s the best piece of advice I can give.

leilabani.com

Normcore and jewelry designer with stylist Deanna Palkowski

Here’s a riddle. What’s a stylist that’s a Fashion Editor and designs a jewelry line? The answer? Deanna Palkowski. And let us tell ya, she is one talented lady. We fall in love with all her editorials and her style is just so effortless and easy. We grilled her on what she does and what she likes… so that we can do and like the same as she does too. Hashtag GIRLCRUSH.

TELL US EXACTLY WHAT YOU DO

I’m the Fashion Editor for ION MAGAZINE and a Fashion Stylist represented by Lizbell Agency.

WHERE DO YOU PULL YOUR INSPIRATION FROM WHEN STYLING?

I tend to draw my inspiration from various tumblrs, books, articles, past or present. I’m
consistently collecting inspiration on a daily basis. I do this because I never know when I will need to implement it.

TELL US YOUR MOST FAVE SHOOT THAT YOU’VE EVER STYLED

This question! I can tell you one of them and it would have to be a creative I styled with Kin Chan and model Megan Jones from Lizbell Agency. It was a spur of the moment photo shoot. It was just a bunch of silly artistic kids hanging out and shooting beautiful photos. We never even thought to approach a magazine to publish them because the photos were just for us.

WHAT ARE YOU INTO WEARING RIGHT NOW?

I have a real fixation with any type of coat.

TELL US ABOUT YOUR JEWELRY LINE

MINTING DIE is my brand. Our first in-house designs are the MINTING DIE RINGS. Ideally, these rings were made to wear on every single inch of your fingers. We will be releasing our 01|Collection in the fall where you’ll be able to see the collaborations we did with various designers.

PREDICT THE FUTURE, WHAT WILL PEOPLE BE WEARING NEXT SEASON?

It’s going to be all about the normcore.