An Elegant Influencer Shares The Style Rules She Lives By
An Elegant Influencer Shares The Style Rules She Lives By

An Elegant Influencer Shares The Style Rules She Lives By

A quick scroll through Marie Baines’ Instagram feed proves she’s the very embodiment of ‘dress well to feel good’. A fan of playful prints and uplifting colours, she loves independent British brands and French style, and tries to shop pre-loved where she can. We asked her to share the style rules she lives by.

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Take your own reference photos. My style is best described as classic, verging on preppy but quite feminine with a touch of boho. I love the 70s vibe and like to experiment with trends, textures and colours to stay up to date but, ultimately, I prefer things that have a timeless elegance. My style is also influenced by Instagram, magazines and street style but my ‘saved’ folder is full of photos of clothes I already own that I've styled in different ways. So when it comes to putting an outfit together, I find I have plenty of ideas to hand and it encourages me to make the most out of what I already have in my wardrobe.

Plan your looks ahead of time. I find a bit of planning goes a long way in making dressing easier in the morning. My outfit will be planned in line with the weather and what I’m doing that day. I check the forecast the day before, then decide what I feel like wearing and build an outfit from there. If I’m not sure how to style it, I might search my saved photos for inspiration. I try to plan my work outfits the night before to avoid that stress when you’ve planned the perfect outfit in your head but you put it on and it just doesn’t work.

Don’t erase your personality as you get older. My style has definitely evolved with age but I firmly believe I can still wear short skirts, leather trousers and bikinis if I want to. The one thing I have learnt is that black doesn’t suit me – except maybe when I have a tan. It means the backbone of my one-time working wardrobe has now gone. The advantage today is I’m much braver with colour and prints.

Stay consistent and true to yourself. Instagram has become a very different beast to when I started out. It’s a juggling act, fitting the demands around my day job and being a mother. I only work with brands I’m happy to recommend and would genuinely buy for myself. I prioritise labels that demonstrate a commitment to the environment and sustainability, and I increasingly opt for pre-loved when I’m looking for new pieces to add to my wardrobe.


Make a wish list every season. That way you can tell what’s really left an impression and whether it’s worth adding to your wardrobe. This year, I really want something from the Sézane x Farm Rio collaboration, and I haven’t quite managed to talk myself out of the Loewe basket bag yet – preferably the Paula’s Ibiza one. It’s chic without being too in your face. I’ve also got my eye on a pair of Ancient Greek sandals and I would love to pick up this navy Sleeper set, along with either of these Wiggy Kit dresses. I also love this linen set from & Other Stories for the summer holidays

Don’t underestimate the power of a good outfit. I’m happiest when I love what I’m wearing. Also, accessories can make or break an outfit. You can have a beautiful dress but if you don’t put some thought into the accessories, it can all fall flat. However, there is a fine line between effort and overdoing it. I'm not a big fan of heavy make-up, heels you can’t walk in and heavily branded bags.

My style is best described as CLASSIC, verging on PREPPY but QUITE FEMININE with a TOUCH OF BOHO.

Forget about following trends. I love the ever-changing world of fashion but not every trend that comes along will suit my body or my lifestyle. I live in the country surrounded by mud most of the year, so winter whites and stilettos just don’t work for me and I’m happiest when trends fit my taste. I hated skinny jeans when they were big, so I was delighted to finally be able to embrace wide-leg trousers. I refuse to call it a day on floral dresses but it has to be maxi or mini to suit my shape. At the end of the day, it’s all about how you wear it. 

Find your favourite brands and stay loyal to them. I love British brands like Aspiga. Its pieces are beautiful, and many are made from organic cotton and soft Ecovero viscose. I have this Aspiga co-ord – it’s super versatile and can be worn together or separately. Also, Wyse has moved on from just doing pretty cashmere knitwear and now does the French girl chic thing in the most convincing way – the founder Marielle is half French, so it makes sense.  The dresses are great and the denim with scalloped details is a real highlight. I’m also a big fan of Wiggy Kit, Pink City Prints and Seraphina for summer dresses; and Lisou is a brand that produces the most amazing prints in small quantities. Its silk jacquard trousers make the clashing print trend so easy to style. Finally, it’s no secret how much I love the French brand Sézane. It’s B-Corp certified so it meets the highest standards in terms of social and environmental impact, and the pieces don’t date and really hold their value. On the high street, Boden does great cashmere, shoes and summer linen, and I always manage to find something in Arket, & Other Stories, Mango, H&M and Zara.


Shop pre-loved to find the most unique pieces. Pre-loved is better for the environment and your bank account, and I find it much more fun as the thrill is in the chase. I regularly scour all the sites for my favourite brands, and I’ve found some real bargains on eBay, Depop and Vinted over the years. I encourage my daughters to shop second-hand as well. 

Remember, if you don’t love something you’ll never wear it. Regardless of whether someone else tells you that’s what you should or should not be wearing, stick with what you love. This goes for colours, shapes and prints. In terms of shopping, it’s always worth hunting around for the best price or even better for second-hand. Investing time into your purchases forces you to give them due consideration. You need to really think about how a piece is going to fit into your wardrobe and whether you’ll still want to wear it next year.   

Bags are the ultimate investment piece. In my view, it’s worth spending money on decent bags. They don’t need to be a designer brand, but they need to be well-made, elegant and versatile. A bad bag can bring down a whole outfit. Outerwear is another item to invest in. Coats and jackets that are well-cut and made from natural fibres make all the difference in the winter. A good leather jacket is another must-have – you will wear it for years to come.

Hold onto the sentimental pieces. Jewellery has always been very special to me, and I plan on passing down many of my favourite pieces to my daughters. I still wear the gold chain my mother gave me for my 40th birthday every day. I also love the diamond and sapphire earrings I designed for myself around the same time – I wanted something more original than plain diamond studs, so I had them made from existing stones. My grandmother also left me a pendant which I wore at my wedding. 

Finally, know that the secret to great style is how you put things together. I loved the outfit I wore to Royal Ascot last year – it was one of my favourite Wiggy Kit dresses from a few years ago (bought pre-loved) with a hat I found on Etsy. I spotted someone in the same dress but we had styled it so differently, it really didn’t matter. You can always put your own spin on things to come up with a look that reflects your personality.

For more inspiration, follow @MadameBShops on Instagram.


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