5 Questions for Erika Bearman, Oscar PR Girl

Oscar de la Renta was one of the first iconic fashion houses of the old-school genre to enter the social media sphere with the seamless grace, yet fiery panache that could only come from the voice of someone with social media savvy and brand know-how.

Enter Oscar PR Girl.

Since ODLR's virtual induction under the Twitter handle @OscarPRGirl in 2009, I have to admit that I've been a social media stalker of sorts across not one, but all of her online habitations.

In honor of one of my favorite fashion brand's virtual transition, I bring you 5 questions for the eponymous Oscar PR girl herself, aka Erika Bearman.  

Erika Bearman on The Coveteur

Erika Bearman on The Coveteur

1. Why did you start Oscar PR Girl?

I started OscarPRGirl in 2009 and initially it was because we realized that all the fashion bloggers were hanging out on Twitter - that was their watering hole. That's where they were posting their content and interacting and talking about fashion. There were conversations going on about ODLR (Oscar de la Renta) and I just remember thinking that it's time for us to be involved and help direct that conversation. It wasn't realistic to have Oscar tweeting- although he's become quite savvy since and love his iPad- so we needed to come up with a different concept. The very direct idea came from my boss Alex Bolen (CEO of ODLR). He said, "You're young, you love fashion, live in New York, work closely with Oscar and travel with him. Why not keep it very authentic and it can be your voice?" And that's how it started. 

A shot of Oscar from @OscarPRGirl on Instagram

A shot of Oscar from @OscarPRGirl on Instagram

2. What do you think Oscar PR Girl has contributed to the ODLR brand?

Oscar's been designing clothes for 50 years and has an incredible reputation - everyone knows his work. But the one thing that's tricky is that the brand can be quite intimidating. When I started working there, I was 27 years old I would never have walked into an Oscar de la Renta shop. But there are so many different products available now- that actually I could have afforded. 

Look, Oscar's collections are like the most glamorous things on the planet- it represents the best possible life. Why wouldn't you want to be on a yacht in Oscar de la Renta?! So I think about how you generate aspiration and what makes you decide when you're young, 'I'm gonna have a bag from Hermes as soon as I can afford it.' It's the same sort of thing we are doing here. I want every one of my followers to say 'when I get married I'm gonna wear an Oscar.'

Erika Bearman on Instagram

Erika Bearman on Instagram

3. As the personification of a fashion label, do you always live the 'Oscar Life'?

Nearly every day I'm wearing Oscar de la Renta for sure, but for me it's always about personal style. I don't think that women dress head-to-toe in one designer anymore. We wear things taht we love, so I don't think you can live and dress like an 'idea' or a 'brand'- you have to be yourself. Sometimes Oscar will look at me and maybe he's a little surprised about what I'm wearing, but he always loves it. 

Madonna - from @OscarPRGirl on Instagram

Madonna - from @OscarPRGirl on Instagram

4. Who are some of your style icons and why?

Annette de la Renta, always. Gwyneth Paltrow in the '90s especially. I also like Rene Russo in The Thomas Crown Affair and Madonna in Truth or Dare. High glamour, which I think is very elusive, but you know it when you see it.

5. What are the guiding principles of your beauty routine? 

The best beauty secrets are Bikram yoga and sleep. And no worrying. And don't wear too much makeup.

Currently in Erika's beauty cabinet: 

Nars, Essie, CHANEL nail polishes; a tube of Egyptian Magic; a Givenchy Kabuki brush; Nars Illuminator in Copacabana; Clinique 7 days Scrub Cream; Laura Mercier primer; Shu Uemura Whitefficient Clear Brightening Gentle Cleansing Oil; Nars Restorative Night Treatment; Sisley Black Rose Cream Mask; Dr. Jart BB Cream; Nude ProGenius Treatment Oil; Aquaphor Lip Repair, Jo Malone Wood Sage & Sea Salt. 

Questions 1-3 taken from Grazia Daily, Question 4 Who What Wear, Question 5 The Coveteur

Follow @OscarPRGirl: Pinterest / Tumblr / Twitter / Instagram 

The Denim Duo: Emily Current + Meritt Elliott

Emily Current and Meritt Elliot, self-professed "hippie chicks," met in the late 90's as students at UCLA where they quickly bonded over a mutual love for vintage denim. On weekends they took the bus to thrift stores and flea markets in Santa Monica where they shared their finds with each other. When graduation day arrived, the girls sat next to each other wearing long vintage dresses under their graduation garb and discussed what they should do with their lives.  They knew they complemented each other well so they decided to "stay in touch and at least hang out, and eventually do something together."

Emily and Meritt in Los Angeles, ELLE Magazine

Emily and Meritt in Los Angeles, ELLE Magazine

Both girls were quickly hired to work in house for different brands - offering their styling assistance for editorial and celebrity. Eventually, their work came together and they realized that it made sense to join forces. 

Eventually, the girls became the go-to style consulting duo for a whose who of LA based fashion brands and celebrities and while they worked, they wore their vintage denim finds. Eventually while on shoots and ad jobs, people started asking to shoot the girls vintage jeans. The demand got so high that they started buying up every pair of vintage jeans they could find and kept them at the studio with a tailor. 

According to the duo, "fashion needed an ease, and denim was the perfect place for it. We just happened to be there at the right time and everyone unanimously agreed with us." 

Emily and Meritt, photo by  Because I'm Addicted

Emily and Meritt, photo by Because I'm Addicted

One of their clients, Serge Azria of Joie, was interested in investing in the girls denim concept so they hired a few friends who knew denim well and started printing their own tags and ironing on Current/Elliot patches to show to Serge. Serge showed the line to the buyers and they loved it. When Meredith Melling Burke was caught wearing a pair of Current/Elliot vintage bellbottoms, Vogue researched it and tracked them down and then Barney's jumped in and wanted to launch the brand first. 

After Vogue, it seemed that Current/Elliot was everywhere overnight. Most of the designs were made from men's vintage jeans because they had character and the silhouettes were different. The debut collection was only 22 pieces - the designs ranging from Skinny Leg Elephant Bell to Boyfriend.  The celebs favored the Boyfriend Jean so the press ate it up, but to the girls what really mattered was the whole story as a whole, not just one design. 

Inside Emily Current and Meritt Elliott's design studio

Inside Emily Current and Meritt Elliott's design studio

Today, operating under the alias of Maude, you can hire the celebrated Los Angeles based duo for styling, art direction, branding, merchandising, marketing and advertising.

Click here to purchase their book, A Denim Story: Inspriations from Bellbottoms to Boyfriends