Paris mix and match

PUBLISHED : Friday, 07 October, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 07 October, 2011, 12:00am


Ariane Zagury is a true Parisian. The owner of Rue Madame in the Lee Gardens and IFC malls opens her closet to share a tip or two on how to look effortlessly chic.

'I love fashion for its creativity and new ideas, but I'm not someone who buys every trend. You have to work styles that match your personality, body shape and your life,' she says.

Zagury organises both her bedroom wardrobe and her walk-in closet, which she shares with her husband, according to function.

Her secret is to only wear styles that flatter her frame. That's why she stocked up on Toupy loose-cut silk pants in every colour she could get hold of.

'I don't wear a lot of pants but these make my legs look good, which is extraordinary for pants. The only problem is I end up wearing them all the time,' she says.

'And since winter in Hong Kong won't come until December, I can probably wear these summer buys for another couple of months. Also, colour pants are in again.'

When Zagury wants to dress up, she mainly chooses above-the-knee skirts, which best suit her curves. Her collection includes a feminine, sequined number from Paul & Joe and a one-piece from Marc by Marc Jacobs.

Most of her fashion finds are subtle but with a twist. 'I especially love open-back pieces because of the surprises that they offer,' she says.

She uses jackets to make a statement - from a versatile leather biker to an eye-catching red. 'You can have an instant makeover if you add a jacket to your outfit. And also I think in Hong Kong they are very useful because of the weather and air conditioning,' she says.

High heels are a new love. Her shoe rack is a mix of cage flat sandals from Alaia and Miu Miu, Bensimon canvas sneakers and strappy sandals from Yves Saint Laurent and Maje.

'Every day I decide if I want to be a Bensimon girl or Yves Saint Laurent,' she says. 'My friend who works with Lane Crawford convinced me to wear high heels. I love the YSL ones because they are comfortable and I also like wedges, but you have to be careful if they are too heavy.'

Zagury has a soft spot for bags, too. So how does she choose them?

'It definitely has to be love at first sight,' she says. 'Like I told my husband, I buy a bag when I know there's nothing in the world that can stop me from doing it.'

Her collection includes the classic beige Hermes Birkin (a wedding gift from a friend), Chanel chain bags, a Louis Vuitton Speedo and a grey leather hold-all from Jerome Dreyfuss (husband of Parisian designer Isabel Marant).

'I love the leather, the design and everything about it,' Zagury says of her Jerome Dreyfuss bag.

With jewellery, Zagury keeps things simple. 'I don't want to make my life more complicated so I always wear the same pieces.'

These include a delicate diamond-studded bracelet from French brand AS29 and the Chanel China Doll necklace.

Achieving Parisian chic, she says, is all about mix and match.

'My style is casual sophisticated because that's who I am,' she says. 'I'm a working mother. It's OK to wear clothes that are super comfortable, tell who you are and have that special kick that makes you different.

'Everyone mixes High Street brands and designer brands. I never do a total look and I don't want people to know how much I paid for this designer jacket. If I take out my Birkin bag, I'll wear something rock 'n' roll to make it edgier and I'd pair a red leather jacket if I wear a classic one-piece,' she says.