Beyond the hype // Adeline Rapon

MARCH 2009

I will never have a static, defined style, and neither will any one else.

Adeline Rapon is an 18 year old from Paris, France. Keep up with her at

Tell us a bit about yourself and where you live.

I've already said it sooo many times, but I'm so proud of it: I'm mixed. My father's origins are Indian, French and East African. He's from Martinique, West Indies, and my mum is a blue-eyed, blonde French. I love my mixed heritage, especially knowing that my great-grandparents were living in countries that are so far away from each other. (My father's side was actually in slavery in Martinique.) I'm very proud of the diverse history behind my family.

I'm 18 and, for too complicated reasons, I'm losing my first year of college study due to art school admissions issues. But I want to study applied arts (graphics, design, art history…), and I hope I will finally be accepted in a school soon. So what am I doing right now? Studying English literature, which bores me more than ever and creating clothes with my friend Harvey Cindy Pekar, which has become a real passion.

How would you describe Paris and the fashion scene where you live?

I live in a close suburb of Paris. I've always studied in Paris, from nursery to now, so I've spent most of my life in the capital. (But this is pretty common.) In the suburb where I'm living, fashion to describe it? It's a real movement; you can recognize suburbians everywhere. They've got a common style, which comes from last year's fashion mixed with other influences, such as American music videos. I'm generalizing, but it's a very distinct fashion.

Fashion in Paris is very varied across the different districts—bourgeois in the West, bohemian-bourgeois (bobos) in the South, suburbians in the middle. Again, I'm generalizing. It moves and changes so much!

I always will be fascinated by Paris. I'm always the first to play tourist and take photos of places yelling "C'est trop beau là!". Ha, childish.

Is it unacceptable to be french and unfashionable? :)

Hahahaha! France is like every other country, some people are fashionable, some not. But I've never seen great fashionable old ladies in other places than Paris. I'm a real big fan of the ones with a little Hermès bag and great coats which you know they have had for so much years but are still like new, and perfect white or black hair. I want to look like them when I'm old because they still care about how they look. I really envy and love those old Parisiennes for their elegance.

Describe your personal style and its influences / inspiration.

I don't know how to describe my style. I try to reinvent each piece of clothing I own, and sometimes it's so hard for me to dress because I just can't wear the same combination twice. Every morning is like a new puzzle I have to resolve; sometimes it takes very long, sometimes I just pick up the right pieces by chance. If I don't recognize myself in the mirror, I just try something else.

My influences and inspirations are very numerous, I often save them in my mental cupboard, forget where they come from and recreate them without being conscious of it. It's mostly on Internet with street style sites. I discovered a great Japanese site thanks to Jane Aldridge, which is Drop - Fashion Street Snap. I'm amazed by the style of the Japanese, how can they be so individualy stylish?

I'm also easily influenced by things I see, like movies, historic fashion exhibitions, trips…I think I will never have a static, defined style, and neither will any one else.

What are your favorite designers and places to shop?

I love designers I can't buy. Chanel, Barbara Bui, Vivienne Westwood, Lagerfeld, Issey Miyake.

But in reality, I mostly shop at H&M, Zara, Benetton, American Apparel, Parisian brands such as Maje, and British stores like Topshop. I'll be in London this month, so Londoners, I need your advice on where to shop!

The first thing you look at in another person's outfit is:

If he/she looks comfortable in it.

What do you splurge on?

Food. Such a shame when I think of what I could have bought with all those grande double shot white mochas and scones. I do need therapy.

What do you skimp on?

Work. (Shhh. I also need therapy for my laziness.)

A fashion rule you always break:

It doesn't matter if colors "match" together or not. Brown and blue are cool together. Rules are quite stupid.

A fashion rule you never break:

Oversized tops should never be paired with oversized bottoms. But I'm not saying I'll never break this rule!

Favorite color(s) of the moment:

I don't know why, but black and red have been my favorite colors for a long time.

Let's talk trends. What do you notice?

Shoulder pads are coming back in, as Betty Autier says. I'm a real fan of the jacket, Thriller, and the artist who sang it. Welcome back, chou!

What do you think is the most underrated item in clothing?

For men, every single item except pants and shirts. For woman, long dresses.

What is the ultimate showpiece in your closet?

My Mum's wedding dress. It's actually in the "annexe closet" because there's not enough space in mine. But I'm so in love with it, it's so simple, only a savage-silk white dress with frills and short sleeves. I'll wear it if I marry one day. Oh, and my Grandma made it.

What is your next "must have" purchase?

Surely the next nice garment I see if I start shopping again.

Are there any famous people whose style you admire?

The Gainsbourg combo: Charlotte/Jane/Serge. They know how to look wonderful in basics. Also, French actresses, but I never remember their names because I'm not a huge fan of French movies (don't whip me!). Then there's Kate Moss and Agyness Deyn...the British "it girls"!

What's on your IPOD / bookshelf / DVD player at the moment?

Music fascinates me, even if I can't even sing "Joyeux Anniversaire" correctly (it's a very hard song, admit it!), and the only thing I ever played correctly with my brother's guitar was the three first notes of "Smells Like Teen Spirit." I love everything. I can listen to Justin Timberlake, then switch to Fall Out Boys, Serge Gainsbourg, Ciara, Ying Yang Twins, Dionysos, Indochine etc. I don't have special tastes. I'm always looking for [musical] beginnings, so right now I'm listening to [music from] the 30's and 40's. Just need to sing and/or dance, whatever the song and whatever the dance.

I love British literature from Wilde to Rowling (Arry Potteur I love you). I'm also a big fan of Amélie Nothomb, Victor Hugo, J.P. Sartre, Barjavel, Vian, weird French literature (Ionesco etc). I'm stopping my list. I don't want to bore you.

Ah movies, movies. You Americans are really trop forts. Can't even tell which you which ones, there's too many awesome movies. Titanic, Changeling, Back to the Future (Marti je t'aime aussi)…but I also love British comedies (again those Rosbeefs) such as Mr. Bean and Shaun of the Dead, French comedies (every single one with Alain Chabat or producted by Canal+), and Asian horror movies. I love too many things.

Next place you want to travel to (and why):

I've wanted to travel to Tokyo since I was 8 years old! I can't tell you how fascinated I am by every single thing from Japan.

What is your personal favorite outfit on LOOKBOOK by you, and by another member?

My favorite from me is Jeunes femmes et vieux messieurs, des cheveux elles en ont pour deux (pictured right). I like the simplicity of it.

I've chosen two guys looks because of their inventiveness and personality, and because if I were a boy, like Queen B. sings, I would look like them, and ALSO because I can't make a choice between so many girls' outfits! Meron na tayong tinapay at keso by Jujiin bentley S. and 26.11.08..16.40..Londres. by Sam L.

What is your favorite magazine?

Les Irockuptibles and Le Nouvel Observateur. I LOVE silly magazines. And fashion magazines bore me.

Something about yourself most people don't know:

I never really felt in love with someone. But I have time, don't I?

By the year 2013, you will be what/where:

Still in Paris, or in London (but I'm dreaming too much). Hope I would have my Applied Arts diploma. And maybe pursuing studies in styling or fashion design or something. Just hope I'll be happy. Art is my real passion. Styling & clothes will come after.

Johnny D. wants to know: Will Obama secure peace all around the world (in the sexiest suits ever)?

Hmmm sexy sexy Obama... Can he? I hope so. I just want to wish him all my encouragements, and lots of sexy suits. But, in a certain way, he isn't my President (even if I really would him like to be, instead of our...well, I'll keep what I think of him to myself), so I can't place all my hopes in him.

What should we ask the next interviewee?

Describe your style at the age of 13. (I'm cruel!)

What would you say to someone seeking general fashion advice?

Remeber who you are. Listen to Mufasa, chéri(e).


show previous comments

Mia Z
You are SO BEYOND THE HYPE. I love the way you mix and match everything with such a sense of style . It is clear that you really know what you are doing. I only hope you will continue to post look on LOOKBOOK cause you got swag. Keep it up, I will be watching from Quebec
Adeline Rapon
Thank you !
No worries, I'll continue ;)
reply ·
Ario Achda
LOVE your mixed historical has brought such a character in u
Louis Leonardo
Je croyais sincèrement être le seul au monde à être incapable de chanter Joyeux Anniversaire correctement.Pourtant je chante quand même bien d'habitude. Mais cette chanson est vraiment trop dur.
J'aime beaucoup ton style, bonne continuation ;)
Adeline Rapon
Aahhhhh je ne suis aps seule sur terre !

reply ·
Alana Rene
How did you get so popular on here??
Alexandra Cameron
Go to portabello road....seriously you won't believe the gems you will find there. It is London's best market for vintage, you will cry with happiness! (remember, it's only on on a Saturday) It's near Notting Hill.

Also, Camden Market is another but be aware, many many wankers that will steal your wallet (this has happened to me, along with some of my favourate polaroids). Camden is quite weird and wonderful.

If you want areas to visit, go to Richmond, sit by the river with a cocktail from The Slug and Lettice while the sun sets.

Let me know how the trip goes...London is awesome!


Adeline Rapon
Thank you soooo much for the tips baby ! xxx
reply ·
Sibylle S.
wow - a very interesting interview. You seem to be so fun :)
Breonna M. Garrett
wow, never been "in love" me either, dont worry.
cats are quite the company.
on a more serious note, i love your style, its unconventional, and universal.
your interview shed some light on what seems to be an awesome personality you have.
Adeline Rapon
now this interview's quite old ;)

thank you very much !
reply ·
Sandra Monica
oh i luv ur looks n style! AMAZING <33 just LUV. :)
Esikazemese _
whats wrong with Sarkozy he is hungarian! hahahha
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Ari -
Tu es super, créative et authentic! YAHY!
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Andrea Skye Brocca
I LOVE YOUR STYLE!!!! and the 5th full body picture from the top, your face reminds me of the boy in the grudge the film!i loveee it. :)
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Lenka James
Sympa l'interview , je ne savais pas que tu étais aussi métissé ou meme métissé. tout court, en tout cas je trouve ca super que tu sois aussi fiere de ton hériage...Le mélange est réussi :) Sinon j'espere que ton reve d'Art se réalisera ^^
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Jessi Jacq
i LOVE adeline...big fan...
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Tina C
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Angel Russell
i fucking love your style.....super cute <3
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Michaela Sinclair
You are beautiful
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