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Shop Girl - Liv Tyler talks strategy

Fashion Week Daily, November 2005

(NEW YORK) Spotted: Liv Tyler scoping Derek Lam's latest collection at Barneys with her good friend (and fellow 6-footer), Mary Alice Stephenson. How could we resist quizzing the elfin actress on her shopping habits?

Tell us your shopping style.
I like basics that I always have, and work around—pants, black dress, that stuff. Then I look through magazines, sometimes see things in films, and I write it down, like, "that's what I want." But when I'm actually in a store—I mean, I could take Barneys in ten minutes. I can scan this floor, go “this and this and this,” and be out!

Because you're famous and you don't want the attention?
No, I've been a quick shopper since I was little. My grandmother said when I was a little girl, she would take me to Bloomingdale's and she said I would always pick the most expensive thing on the floor. Like once, I told her I wanted the only velvet Yves Saint Laurent dress in the whole store.

Is YSL your normal style?
No! I'm a total tomboy in real life. Nobody believes me, but my friends know it. I wear sneakers and Juicy Couture velour sweatpants every day, with C&C California tees and hoodies; that's all I wear. Everybody makes fun of me, they're like, please, can you wear anything else but that?!

What's your excuse?
I have a baby, and I'm always running around. Sometimes I wake up at 7am, and I just throw on what's lying on the floor, because my son is crying.

So was your wool trench lying on the floor this morning?
Haha, no, when I go out, I like to make it like a costume. I'll think about a film or a photograph, I'll imagine an image and try and find it. I'm so unhip, it's not something new, but tonight I'm obsessed with Alfred Hitchcock. My makeup artist, Romy, did this great liquid eyeliner and this trench is Derek Lam and it's so cinematic.

It's funny, now everyone knows you as an elf, but when Empire Records came out, suddenly everyone had that plaid skirt...
I know! I was so mad, too, because the night before we shot that movie, I had another really amazing outfit all picked out to wear. And they changed it, they gave me that grungy skirt and that mohair sweater, which shed everywhere… I was sixteen, it was a big deal to me. I couldn't believe it, when the movie came out and girls wore that outfit!

So if someone wanted to copy your style now, without the bad mohair and Lolita skirt?
They should hire Mary Alice!