Hope you enjoyed Lee Kleinhelter’s design interview. Now let’s peek a little more into her personal style. First of all, Lee has the whole Grace Kelly thing going on…beautiful complexion, symmetrical features, understated make-up, and a relaxed, yet definitive style. When you’re with her you want to sit up a little straighter, spruce up your hair, and glance to make sure you have on your lipstick…not because Lee is snobby or stuffy, but because she has a natural air of femininity and style about her. It’s infectious. For instance, I sat next to this during our visit…just go ahead and slay me with the bag and shoes.
Lee is poised, well spoken and embraces elegant style. Which I find refreshing in today’s ultra casual culture.
She raises the bar.
Let’s discuss with our stylish guest exactly how she keeps that bar so high. Joining us again, Lee Kleinhelter.
SS: My signature style is…
LK: Hopefully the same as my design sense of style. I don’t put a lot of thought into it. I don’t follow fads. I keep things for years when they work. I splurge on a few things and that’s what I’m wearing…ask Allie H. at the store, she’s probably really bored with looking over and seeing the same pair of white jeans and Chloe platforms ; )
SS: When pressed for time, my go-to outfit is…
LK: All white or all black. Keep it simple. (never been great at outfits, I’m a separates kind of shopper).
SS: I always feel glam when I…
LK: Am wearing taller shoes!
SS: Every girl should have at least one…
LK: Awesome bag, jeans that fit well, boots. What else do you need? I believe more isn’t better in that category. I would rather have one great bag, shoes, or whatever instead of having a bunch of semi-nice pieces. I’m constantly editing our closets. Right now I die over the Celine bag.
SS: Okay, you had me on the boots. Favorite brand?
LK: I have older Prada ones that I still love. The zipper is broken so I feel like Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman because soon I’ll need to use a safety pen ; ) I’ll splurge on something and then wear it into the ground because I’m so excited about them.
SS: Tell us more about your fashion splurges and staples…
LK: I don’t splurge on jewelry or lots of outfits, I love the shoes, bag coats & watches. Those are my staples. I’ve been carrying the Goyard for a few years and love rotating old bags in the mix. Don’t think every season or year you have to have the newest thing. For me it’s not having the trend of fad especially if its an investment piece or a splurge I need to be able to wear it season after season.
SS: You stayed true to your style during pregnancy. Any tips on looking chic while expecting?
LK: Dressing during pregnancy, just like most women, I was all about comfort while still feeling stylish. Your body changes so quickly that I don’t think it’s worth purchasing a lot of maternity clothes you can never wear again. I used the belly band in the beginning, which meant I could still wear some of my jeans, etc. Then my go-to was leggings and simple tops. I don’t wear flow-y clothes, so it just felt right having more form-fitting pieces.
SS: Speaking of chic, your baby shower was perfectly styled and shot for Southern Accents Magazine. Tell us about it…
LK: Tara with Soirée helped w/ the shower, I stumbled upon her for my wedding in Charleston in ’05. Fun tidbit: she did Ryan Reynolds & Blake Lively’s this past weekend. Crazy! The dress I wore to my shower was by Milly. Pretty on the hanger, but it felt more like a drapery valance. It wasn’t really me, but I needed something, we had just moved.
SS: I have to share a few of these style shots from the shower because they’re wonderful…I spy custom made tableskirts with white piping. Pure happiness!
shower photos by Liz Banfield
SS: My favorite accessory is…
LK: Husband’s watch. I gave him, now borrowing ; )
SS: My favorite hair product is…
LK: Clear rubber bands from Sephora. I always have my hair up. In my next life I’m having thick hair ; )
SS: I never leave home without…
LK: Key fob. Otherwise I can’t get back in my unit.
SS: People would be surprised to know that I…
LK: Am OCD about cleaning and organizing. I relax by Windex-ing…it’s a disease. The show Hoarders makes me have nightmares. If there’s something I can label, it’s done. OR maybe cars? Had a Dad who’s obsessed with older cars. Always drove stick shift, done driver’s schools, and love our MINI for the weekends. Prefer black and washed weekly.
SS: Always in my purse…
LK: Lipgloss, mints, and wipes. After having kids, you feel like you always need them. My current lip gloss is Neutrogena Moisture Lip Shine Lip Soother (actually had to look in my purse) which I like because it has SPF and stays on. Whatever the brand, it’s always a light and sheer gloss. I’ve tried all kinds of products, but it’s not where I care about splurging. The bag that I put it in, however, I do ; )
SS: Current book on my nightstand…
LK: Just mags: Vanity Fair, InStyle, Elle Decor, Vogue…
SS: Night owl or morning bird?
LK: Morning. And MUST have eight hours of sleep. Which means I’m thrilled to be in bed by 10pm.
SS: Coffee or tea?
LK: Tall double soy latte, no foam. I’m that person at Starbucks everyday spending $4. I only like the white cups, not the holiday ones.
. . . .
What a great chat. I laughed out loud (and strangely identified) when reading about her Windex rituals. And was also reminded that simple IS chic when it comes to fashion. I love Lee’s outfit suggestion of using one color…what a great rule when you’re pressed for time but need to make a statement.
On a final note, I finally tracked down Lee’s fabulous home I remember from Cottage Living, which is still incredible six years later.
Creamy fabulousness and those chairs, those chairs…
Notice Lee’s use of one color for impact, clearly one of her style signatures. Love it!
The rest of the pics from her Cottage Living 2006 article are over here.
Thank you for sharing so much with us, Lee! Hope you come back.
I’m headed out a little early for a roadtrip adventure with my girls and our horses. See you next week.
Cheers to the weekend!