[Sisters with Style] Kira and Fiona

This week on Sisters with Style are two ladies I have known for over 15 years.  Their grandmother lived the house next door to my parents' when I was growing up - and I was lucky enough to spend a couple of summers with their family in France, including attending Fiona's wedding which remains one of the most beautiful I have ever been to. 

Fiona and Kira

Fiona worked in London in the city for 15 years, and Kira has worked in fashion and design while following her husband around the world.  She launched her own brand of luxury leather bracelets and accessories, Owen&Savary, 3 years ago.  They describe themselves as 'more than just sisters, more than just friends,' and with their Franco-British background they have benefited a mixed 'style education' - their maternal grandmother embodied elegance, refinement and impeccable style, whilst their English grand-mother brought a touch of extravagance, quirkiness and humour (which I can vouch for myself, having been lucky enough to know her).

So girls, would you say you both have a defined style, or does it change season by season?
F:  for 15 years, I had to respect the strict rules of the banking world, sticking to formal business suits adding just a few feminine touches. When I stopped working to take care of my kids, all I wanted to wear the first year was jeans! I let my style develop and now I admit I thoroughly enjoy following the trends even if I am basically a classical girl. I just add a few trendy seasonal bits here and there.
K: I’ve always loved fashion and followed it, but I have never let it influence me if it’s not my style. I don’t think fashion should be taken too seriously. You can have fun with it but most importantly you should stick to what suits you. I started my business 3 years ago, I design leather jewellery and accessories and of course I’ve had to dive into fashion even more than before, but that hasn’t changed me, I am true to myself and only follow the trends I feel comfortable in.

Has your style changed over time?  If so, what do you think has driven that change? 
F: I’m lucky, I live in London where just walking in the street can be a daily fashion inspiration. What I love about this city is that you can walk around with a bin bag over your head and no one will care, in fact they’ll applaud it as something original. London is fun and lets you be yourself. After my banking years where I felt a little trapped in a certain style, I feel like my style has flourished and I can be myself now. I’m pretty casual on my daily school runs but love to dress up in the evenings.
K: I've lived in Paris for almost 4 years. It’s the capital of fashion, however, unlike in London, there’s no way you could walk around with a bin bag over your head! People would definitely think you’re mad! My style has changed so much over the years, I’ve lived in 7 countries in the past 20 years and have without a doubt been influenced by all the different cultures I’ve encountered. My many travels have given me a lot of inspiration not only for my own personal style but also for designing the Owen&Savary collection.

Do you think you influence each other's clothing choices?
F: We love shopping together. In fact, there are very few other people we like to shop with. We trust each other’s tastes. Working in fashion, Kira is always aware of the latest trends, she’s my fashion guru!
K: What I love about Fiona is her effortless sense of style. She doesn’t need to know about any of the latest trends, she instantly goes for the most elegant and timeless pieces. Never a faux-pas! I suppose we do influence each other!

Fiona - Sandro chunky weave summer sweater, Zara linen strappy tee, Prada sunglasses / Kira - Maje leather skirt, Les Petites linen tee, Zara ballerinas, Owen&Savary python cuff

When you do get to shop together, where are the first places you visit?
K: Our favourite cities to shop in are London, Paris, New York and San Sebastian. In London we usually head to Liberty’s, Dover Street Market, Topshop and the shops in Westbourne Grove, Notting Hill, where Fiona lives. When Fiona visits me in Paris, we like to go to Le Bon Marché, Karine Arabian, L’Eclaireur, Merci, La Divine Parisienne and all the shops on my street, Rue de Courcelles, in the 17th arrondissement.

Would you pick the same things out?
K: It’s funny, we can separate in a shop and come back holding the same piece in a different colour. So, yes, I’d say we do often pick the same things! And then we strike a deal to share them!

What would you say are your key wardrobe must-haves?
F: A good pair of jeans, cashmere sweaters because I'm always cold in winter, comfortable boots and my favourite Bottega Veneta handbag.
K: A well-cut leather blazer, a pretty silk blouse, skinny jeans, an Owen&Savary cuff and lots of fun shoes and bags to change your style.

Are there any particular pieces or an outfit that make you think of each other?
F: Kira loves leather, when I think of her I think of leather jackets and low boots...
K: Fiona cannot live without chunky cashmere knits and silk mandarin collar shirts!

If you were to be dressed by one designer for the rest of your life, who would you choose? 
K: We’d both be unable to choose just one designer – we’d hate to be stuck with one style and have to miss on the others. Both Fiona and I love mixing and matching designer brands with high street, it’s the best way to create your own, individual style.

Do you have any particular ‘fashion memories’ with your own (or your sister’s) style?
K: I have loved shoes since I could walk! When I was 6, I remember going to school in wellies which I hated. I spotted a girl with really cool cowboy wellies and somehow I managed to convince her we should swap. I honestly don’t know what I said to pull that off but she agreed and I went home with very trendy wellies. Of course, my mother was horrified and I had to return them…
F: I remember dreaming about satin trousers during the Grease craze, Olivia Newton-John was my idol for a while there! I’ve never had a pair but I haven’t given up on my dream!

If you could get away with it, what items would you pinch from each other's wardrobes?
F: Kira's gorgeous Maje leather skirt and one of her Owen&Savary python cuffs!
K: Her Free Lance biker boots and her Louboutin black patent pumps. I know, I’m an incurable shoeholic…

Finally, what trends do you think you'll adapt to for Autumn/Winter?
F: Military! Works perfectly with my kids’ military timetable!
K: I love burgundy as you will see from my A/W Rock Collection, so I’m really happy to see that colour everywhere! I’ll probably also add touches of baroque and gothic to spice up my existing wardrobe.

Huge thanks to Kira and Fiona for making time to do this piece.  Please do have a look at Kira's gorgeous leather accessories at Owen&Savary, and have a look through our other Sisters with Style interviews here.

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