In an exclusive interview for BlackBook, model and animal rights activist Ireland Baldwin (daughter of Alec Baldwin and Kim Basinger) sat down with first cousin and fellow model Alaia, to catch up on life and reflect on their shared love for fashion and music. Alaia Baldwin, daughter of Stephen, niece of Alec, William, and Daniel, and sister of Hailey Bieber, is an advocate for model rights and an accomplished dance artist (she’s trained in ballet, as well as modern and jazz styles) in her own right.
Splitting time between residences in New York and Los Angeles, Alaia navigates her modeling career, social activism and charitable work with the demands of her new marriage to movie producer Andrew Aronow. These oft competing priorities make for a careful balancing act, as she also travels extensively both in the U.S. and abroad, in pursuit of her passions – as well as for family, professional and social obligations.
In addition to modeling, she has completed her studies in Eastern Medicine, with a goal to helping people to take on a more holistic approach to their health.
Here’s how it went…
Ireland Baldwin: I would say you and I are both somewhat passionate about fashion. You much more than myself…but what and who inspires your sense of style?
Alaia Baldwin: I really feel that my sense of style evolves with me. I am intrigued by historical influences in fashion, such as punk rock’s influence on fashion in the ’70s. What inspires me is not necessarily what I wear on a day to day basis, however. I do like to keep my personal style simple, clean, classic and comfortable. A good pair of jeans and a leather jacket – you can never go wrong. A person who I would say inspires me stylistically is Jane Birkin; she’s classic, cool and relaxed.
IB: What drives your wardrobe choices day to day?
AB: My daily wardrobe really depends on my mood, but I like to find one great item and wear it often. A good white t-shirt, black ankle boots, jumpers, etc. I like things that are easy to choose in the morning and that are easy to wear.
IB: Who are your all-time favorite designers?
AB: I do love so many designers! Overall, I would have to say Azzedine Alaia. His influence on fashion, clothing, and sculpting of the female form in a garment is something that can never be replicated. He was one of a kind, he was revolutionary. He understood a women’s body better than anyone else.
IB: What brands have you been wearing lately?
AB: I’ve been wearing some great vintage finds, like a men’s Christian Dior leather jacket. I love this pair of Rag & Bone ankle boots, I wear them every day. Also Hanes t-shirts, and a black leather fanny pack I purchased in Italy at this great little leather shop. Simple but stylish looks that are perennially fashionable.
IB: What few trends do you wish would go away?
AB: I really appreciate athleisure, but I think it’s gone overboard.
IB: If you were a genre of music, what would you be?
IB: What have you been listening to these days?
AB: Daily I usually listen to rap, like Childish Gambino or Drake. I love Radiohead, In Rainbows is my favorite album, so that’s played a lot.
IB: If you could be any musical artist in the world, who would you be?
AB: I recently watched The Beach Boys documentary (Pet Sounds, Showtime) and was really inspired by Brian Wilson. He was a genius…and it would be interesting to get inside of his head for a day.