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Sidewalk Style: Designer Off-Duty

Outside Urban Outfitters, we have a run-in with a Chevy Chase jewelry designer who can count Rihanna and Rachel Bilson as fans.

Beth Silverberg, 27
Jewelry designer, Beth Lauren (www.BethLauren.com)

What she’s wearing:
Zara sandals, Urban Outfitters shorts, T-shirt “from somewhere,” Vince cargo jacket, Balenciaga bag. “I can’t believe I’m not wearing my jewelry,” she says. “Usually I’d be wearing tons of pendant necklaces or I layer rhinestone necklaces.”

What did you buy at Urban Outfitters?
“A plaid shirt by Steven Alan. It was pretty cheap.”

Has the economy been a challenge for you?
“I’m making it through. Buyers were really conservative about six months ago. Now they seem to be a little bit more aggressive with the buying. But I’ve sold to Intermix, BCBG, Anthropologie, and Free People. I do all my sales through my showrooms in New York and Japan.”

What’s the fall line like?
“I’m into spikes this season, gunmetal chains, and rhinestones. I incorporate a lot of vintage elements. It’s an eclectic mix. I do a lot of convertible wrap necklaces that can be bracelets.”

What do you read for style inspiration?
“I do a lot of online and magazine reading. Elle, Harper’s Bazaar, and Lucky are the magazines I have subscriptions to right now. Online, I read Who What Wear Daily, the Sartorialist, and Elle’s street blog, Style.com. I watch celebrities to see what they wear.”

How did you break into the industry?
“I started designing in college. I was a fine-arts major at Lehigh University. The first big thing was getting into the open-see that Bendel’s does every season for new designers. That got me a little more exposure. And I was doing trunk shows in New York and selling to smaller boutiques.”

What’s on your wish list for fall?
“I’m looking for a brown leather jacket and flat black boots for everyday.”

Rachel says:
Alexander Wang coined a phrase—and inspired a style for a league of leggy, downtown types—when he described his line’s style as “model off-duty.” The idea is that getting all dressed up is just one way to look good but that real personality-driven style emerges in the off moments. I liked Beth’s drapey tank and the fit of her cool safari-inspired jacket. Perhaps this is designer off-duty?
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