As a fashion buyer, writer and stylist, Aya Jammal, 32, has made a living out of dressing people and dictating their shopping experiences through her savvy edits. She has the inside track on the industry and a wardrobe that reflects exactly that. “My mother and sisters launched their first multi-brand women’s boutique in Riyadh when I was about 10,” she recalls, “And I’ve been going to showrooms with them in Paris and Milan ever since. Fashion is a part of my upbringing, my DNA.” Aya helms @thewardrobe_editor – an Instagram-focused platform offering wardrobe organisation, shopping and styling services – as well as working for the family company, Silhouette Fashions.
The company’s luxury boutique, Podium, is where Aya’s carefully curated buy comes into its own, bringing together heavyweight brands such Anna Sui, Elie Saab and Monique L’huillier. Of course, the buying part of Aya’s job enables her unique access to the collections months before they land in stores. “Pre-ordering my clothes is one of the perks of the job,” she smiles, while she directs her impulse buys towards LE66 in Paris and Beirut, Excelsior in Milan,
and Luisa Via Roma, FarFetch and Fashion Bnkr.
“My personal style is constantly changing,” she says, “However, there’s always a touch of 1980s rebellion in the way that I dress. I have a lovely collection of vintage Versace and Chanel jackets and belts from the ’80s, as well as Christian Lacroix bodysuits,” she says.
Aya now lives in Beirut but travels back and forth to Riyadh and the world’s fashion capitals, too. For work, she always backs her Balmain jacket. “It is my go-to during fashion week because the shoulder pads make me feel great.” Despite the frenetic show schedules, Aya always squeezes in a fleeting shop spree. “I bought myself a bright red Miu Miu coat from the boutique in Florence, it’s one of those pieces I pack every time I travel.” In New York she stocks up on Pat McGrath make-up, and searches for vintage finds in East London. She also likes to pick up “eclectic beachwear from the little boutiques around Mykonos and Juan Les Pins.”
As far as style stimulation goes, Aya tends to absorb it the modern way, from her Instagram newsfeed. “I have plenty of style crushes, such as Drew Ginsburg (@drewdylanlex) and Sabine Getty (@sabinegetty), both of whom happen to be jewellery designers.” She also draws inspiration from the streets. “Lately it’s been the effortlessly cool women and men queuing at Le Relais de l’Entrecôte on Rue Marbeuf in Paris, or leaving movie theatres and art galleries that catch my attention most. Those who dare to dress up when there are no photographers around, they are my off-duty style heroes,” she muses.
Aya Jammal Wears Marques Almeida Top At Bloomingdale’s – Dubai. Rasario Suit, Gianvito Rossi Shoes, Balmain Earring And Jewellery, All Aya’s Own.
Photography: Richard Hall. Styling: Teresa Karpinska. Words: Elaine Lloyd-Jones. Hair: Ashraf Saadeldine. Make-Up: Bechir. With Thanks To Phoenicia Hotel Beirut.