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.
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.
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.
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.'
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.
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.