Spring Summer Style Diary
Against a sweeping backdrop over the Hollywood Hills, Leighton Meester reclines on a sun lounger amongst the palm foliage. The actress, whose diverse career ranges from her role in Gossip Girl to appearing on Broadway, has now launched her first record Heartstrings. Revealing her laid-back, bohemian demeanour, Leighton shares her Spring Summer Style Diary with a strong ‘70s influence.
Photographer: Eric Ray Davidson
Tell us about your new music and album?
I just got back from a tour for Heartstrings, my first record. I played in 9 cities and now planning on another leg for more shows. It has been a really great experience traveling with my music. I've been working on the record for over 2 years so I'm really pleased to finally tour with it and I've grown immensely because of it. It's insanely fun performing my songs, and it feels surreal interacting with the people who've heard it. It's a confessional, very personal record and I'm really proud of every aspect of it.
What’s your red carpet style?It varies, which is what I find most fun about getting dressed for an event. I like to experiment and change depending on mood, but comfort is most important to me.
What’s your off duty look?
Jeans and tees, jumpers, jean jacket, comfortable long skirt and sweater.
Who are your style icons?
Diane Keaton and Stevie Nicks
What is your favourite summer holiday destination?
I love going to my hometown and being with my family in Florida. It's off season in summer when it's hot, so it's empty. We spend time on the boat and cook out, and have beach and pool days.
What is your favourite summer song/tune?
I like Beach House, Mac Demarco and Joni Mitchell for breezy tunes.
If you could be in someone else’s shoes for the day whose would it be?
I look up to Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood, who speaks up for all women and their right to health care.
‘Like anyone, I've gone through phases, but the biggest difference is that I'm less concerned with fashion for fashion's sake. I find that I'm happiest when I'm comfortable in my favourite key items, so I just add or subtract from my tried and true items to create a certain look. ’
- Leighton Meester
What is your favourite thing about summer dressing?
All the options of different styles, open toe shoes and not having to layer.
What are your three desert island beauty essentials?
Spf (Biotherm Lait Solaire), lip balm (Homeoplasmine or Aquafor), cuticle oil (Nuka or unrefined coconut oil).
What are your handbag essentials?
Reusable stainless steel or glass water bottle, sunglasses, hand cream or cuticle oil, lip balm, hair clips and pins, and current reading material.
What is the most treasured item in your wardrobe?
Jimmy Choo sunglasses, which are also my most often utilized.
Are there any items that you did or would like to steal from any of your character’s wardrobes?
Yes, I was able to keep a lot of clothes from Life Partners and Like Sunday, Like Rain. The characters were both casual dressers so they get a lot of wear.
Piece of fashion advice you would give your best friend?
I appreciate honesty so I would always ask a good friend for fashion advice, and I will give input but I have some very stylish friends.
What inspires you?
Intelligent, passionate women who fight for the education, equality and empowerment of others and the women and men who support them.
Do you have a favourite look that you have been photographed in?
The Jimmy Choo shoot were some of my favourite photos I've had taken. The clothes, and obviously shoes, bags and shades were wonderful, and the photography, styling and atmosphere was awesome. The whole team was such a pleasure to work with and it was the most fun day I've had shooting.
How do you feel that your style has changed through the years?
Like anyone, I've gone through phases, but the biggest difference is that I'm less concerned with fashion for fashion's sake. I find that I'm happiest when I'm comfortable in my favourite key items, so I just add or subtract from my tried and true items to create a certain look.
Where are your LA hotspots?
I don't know many hotspots in LA because I spend most of my time at home or traveling. I garden and cook, but when I go out to eat I usually get sushi, like Sugarfish or Katsuya, or Mexican food at Casa Vega.
What do you think defines LA style?
The nicest thing about LA for me is the weather and proximity to the ocean. During the day, you could be at the beach or wearing summer clothes and be able to add layers like a sweater or light jacket for when it gets chilly at night.
What are your tips for looking and feeling your best?
The most important aspect of emotional well-being for me is getting enough rest. I go to sleep and wake up early, and rest when I need, which is important in staying healthy when you have a hectic schedule. Stretching, staying hydrated and keeping my body in motion, even with a relaxing walk, is very equalizing.
How would you describe your approach to fashion?
Not taking it too seriously, and bucking judgment.