Being French isn’t solely a matter of birthplace or nationality, but rather a comprehensive viewpoint, a worldview even—Romania-born Paris resident Sabina Socol is a walking embodiment of this. The style columnist and social media strategist was raised in France and describes herself as French through and through—while also crediting her more tongue-in-cheek sartorial approach to her motherland.
“I would say that my style and general lifestyle is 99% French, but I still have this little bit of almost bad taste—but not quite,” Sabina laughingly tells us by phone from her apartment in Paris. “When I go over the top with stuff, when I get a little bling-bling, I joke that it’s because of my Eastern European origins. It’s a little sense of humor in the way that I dress that I get from my Romanian side.”
From where we stand, Sabina possesses not one modicum of “bad taste.” With a penchant for playfulness, a massive vintage collection, and a denim obsession, she was a natural choice to help debut our latest collection.
“I always say that dressing is a form of communication, because it’s the first thing that other people see of you, and that you see of others,” she says of her philosophy on style. “It doesn’t mean you instantly know their personality through their clothes, but it is a form of communication. I think it transpires that since I love Paris, I like being elegant—but I am also a joyful person, and lighthearted.”
So far, Sabina’s career has played out like so many in the fashion editorial world: after studying journalism and communications in university, she briefly interned for some print publications in Paris—Elle, Grazia, and GQ. Swiftly recognizing the industry trend toward digital nativity, she made the move to web, managing social strategy full-time at L'Officiel before eventually branching off to launch her freelance writing career.
“I love writing—it’s my passion,” she says with an emphatic tone in her voice. “My experience in writing over the years has made me realize that it’s always important to know who you’re writing for. I used to write for only French press, and it was an extremely different approach. I love writing for Who What Wear, because it’s a first-person column and I get to really say everything I want to say. I approach it differently because I know the readers are different than the ones I have in France; I try to write for them with my perspective as a French woman and a digital native.”
While she certainly considers herself first and foremost a writer, her creative interests extend beyond the page; she’s presently hard at work on a top-secret project with a French brand that launches soon (hint: it involves accessories!).
“Of course I always want to write more, but I’m a pretty creative person, so I also really enjoy styling shoots and art directing,” she explains. “This new project is very creatively challenging as well. I would say that writing is really my passion, but it’s hard for me to focus only on that. I love mixing both.”
While on set with us in Paris, Sabina genuinely embodied the playful attitude she conveys with her wardrobe choices—and she also came across as a bona fide denim-head who can’t get enough of the iconic fabric.
“Denim is basically the only thing I wear. I wear it everyday; to me it’s the most basic of the basics and my go-to,” she says cheerfully. “I build my outfits around my jeans; if I have a good pair of jeans, I can change what I wear around them, like a chunky sweater if I’m feeling more casual or a bodysuit if I want to be more sexy. Whenever I feel like I find the perfect jeans, I am super-happy and wear them for months straight.”
Her most perfect jeans as of late? Her favorite J Brand styles, of course.
“I think J Brand’s jeans are very well-cut, and I wear them a lot. My favorite denim that I adore from J Brand is the white Joan High-Rise Crop,” she says. “It’s so perfect with the high waist and the flared leg. White jeans are always chic.”
“I think J Brand is definitely a cool American brand of jeans, and I feel like your universe resonates with mine,” she mindfully observes. “J Brand really embodies the cool LA or New York girl, and has actually built a cool little community around it. That’s the first thing I think of when I think of the brand, and I admire it.”