We are delighted to spotlight our latest Marfa Muse, journalist Stacey Duguid.
Stacey began her career in PR, working for brands including Giorgio Armani, Prada and Paul Smith before joining ELLE as Executive Fashion Editor where her back-page column, Mademoiselle, Confessions of an ELLE Girl, was born. Stacey then went on to work in the editorial teams for retailers including NET-A-PORTER and Harrods, before deciding to go back to full time journalism, and has a weekly column in the Telegraph, as well as writing for British Vogue and the Sunday Times.
Stacey is 5ft 6 and wears size M-L in the Parachute Parka in bronze, olive, black.
TELL US ABOUT YOUR BACKGROUND?
I’m from up north (born in Manchester) via Scotland (where I was brought up since the age of 6) and moved to London on a whim aged 20. I knew I wanted to work in fashion but knew no-one, had no money and so ended up working in fashion shops and pubs. Around this time, house music was huge and I threw myself into the club scene. It was here I met the women who eventually went on to hire me as assistants. I started my career working in PR for Paul Smith, Giorgio Armani and Prada, but I’d always wanted to work in magazines but couldn’t afford to work for free. When the editor of Elle met me at a Prada event, she stole me and, aged 30, I finally had a job I loved. I stayed at ELLE for a decade and it was here I discovered I could write. My editor gave me a back-page column, Mademoiselle, Confessions of an ELLE Girl, was born and I wrote about ‘her’ mad life for 4 years.
WHAT LED YOU TO WORKING IN FASHION?
Aged 12, I had a job working in a chemist. At the end of the day, I’d go to the newspaper shop next door and blow £10 on magazines. I read Vogue, The Face, I-D. I became utterly obsessed with moving to London, which I did rather unsuccessfully when I ran away from home aged 17. Sorry mum. I loved the way the images took me to a fairy-tale world, but unfortunately, Edinburgh in the 1980s wasn’t the place to seek out advice on ‘how to work in fashion’. With zero guidance, I had to find my own way.
TALK US THROUGH YOUR JOURNEY SO FAR?
After ELLE I had two babies back to back in my late thirties. I left ELLE and started to work freelance for Matches Fashion and other brands. I wrote an agony aunt column for ELLE and after a few years, covered a maternity leave at Porter magazine, the print magazine set up by Net-A-Porter. It’s there I discovered my love of art meets commerce – there’s nothing more exciting than featuring clothes women actually want to buy. I then went to Harrods where I worked as the Editorial Director for three years. I learned so much working there but wanted to spend more time with my children so I’m back to full-time journalism. I write regularly for the Sunday Times Style, I have a weekly fashion and dating column in the Saturday Telegraph, I’m back writing for ELLE again, and this year I started to write for British Vogue. I am constantly inspired by writing and know it’s my true calling.
WHAT ARE YOU MOST PROUD OF?
Moving to London knowing no-one, working late nights in a pub to pay the rent, surviving the most cutthroat and expensive city as a young woman and making a success of my life. And, of course, I’m deeply proud of my two children.
WHAT ADVICE DO YOU HAVE FOR OTHERS WHO ARE THINKING ABOUT GETTING INTO SIMILAR ROLES?
Work hard, try to leave your moaning at the door (call a friend instead, quit moaning to your boss). I know that’s not very ‘woke’ of me, as in of course you should complain if work is making you sick, but grit and resilience will get you everywhere. Dig deep, work hard, network thoughtfully and don’t spend every waking hour on Instagram. Go out, see things, meet people, read, having something to talk about.
HOW DO YOU STYLE YOUR MARFA STANCE PIECE?
Since this coat landed at my door, I swear I haven’t taken it off. It’s voluminous style goes with everything, but especially wider legged trousers as shown here. These are by Bottega, the jumper is Joseph. I love the mix of browns and autumn tones with my red hair. I also wear it with joggers and hiking boots with long socks, but I’ve have worn it thrown over a sexy dress on a night out! I think what’s smart about the design is the fact it’s a daytime coat but the shine of the fabric lends itself so well to any occasion. It has that dressed up dressed down vibe, which is my natural go to style.
Photographer: Zac Frackelton