Marina Diamandis loves a good pantsuit. But that’s only one of the things that makes her style so unique. With an emphasis on retro fashion, DIY duds and a devotion to individuality, Diamandis has created a look all her own—on and off the stage.
The Welsh singer-songwriter, better known by her stage name, Marina and the Diamonds, has been performing since childhood, and has an innate love for both theatre and costume. It’s not hard to see either. With the arrival of her third LP, FROOT, released this past March via Neon Gold and Atlantic, came a burst of color alongside an updated look.
“In the beginning, it was a very, very crude version of what I’m doing now,” laughed Diamandis. “So very badly put together vintage, kind of glittery ensemble.”
And, with FROOT’s look, seems to have come a new self-awareness for the frontwoman.
“If I’m not performing or don’t have to do anything professional, I would be very happy to just wear leggings and a t-shirt for the rest of my life,” she said.
That’s our kind of girl. For the latest version of Style Record, we caught up with Diamandis and talked about everything from ‘70s influences to thrifting in LA.
Paste: Tell us a little a bit about your style and how it influences you and your performance on stage.
Diamandis: My style for FROOT so far has been a lot of ‘60s and ‘70s references, you know, with the hair—the very triangular bob. That’s how this stuff started and started to evolve. In terms of styling for the stage, I’ve been doing this mix of ‘70s with digital fiberware. I think that’s where my style is today. I’m very much enjoying pantsuits, anything that has a touser on it.
Paste: Yeah, the look for FROOT has been great. What do you think makes a good stage outfit?
Diamandis: Definitely something that’s comfortable, but glamorous.
Paste: How would you say your onstage style differs from your offstage style?
Diamandis: Oh, wildly! If I’m not performing or don’t have to do anything professional, I would be very happy to just wear leggings and a t-shirt for the rest of my life.
Paste: And you’ve been performing most of your life. How has your style changed from when you first started performing?
Diamandis: In the beginning, it was a very, very crude version of what I’m doing now—so very badly put together vintage, kind of glittery ensemble [laughs]. I’ve always been a fan of the pantsuit, though. I’m still doing that.
Paste: How did you fall in love with the pantsuit?
Diamandis: I don’t know, I think it’s because of my figure. I’ve got kind of an hourglass figure, so I can’t really do skirts because my legs aren’t my strong point. I love doing a one piece because that makes me feel like it’s very fitted and flattering, but you can also move in it quite a lot, which you can’t really do when you’re wearing a dress or skirt. That’s why it’s always my go-to.
Paste: Do you have any favorite designers right now?
Diamandis: I like Sandro, and I love Acne. Oh, and there’s also Asli Polat. I also like really wild, kind of kitschy ‘70s designs. One designer is Mary Benson. I think she just left college, so she’s very new.
Paste: And you launched 11 Diamonds back in 2013. Will you tell me a little about that?
Diamandis: Yeah, I did a run of t-shirts. Actually, I have done nothing with it [laughs]. However, it still exists, so I really want to do something. I suppose my intention for it is just to be an umbrella brand in which I can collaborate with other artists under. I don’t think I’ll do a line of t-shirts again, but I really wanted to get out some of my ideas that I hadn’t done for my merchandise—to do something on my own for a while. Yeah, I guess it’s some kind of fashion site.
Paste: Yeah, I love the collaboration with other artists. Do you plans to do something like that again?
Diamandis: Yeah, maybe, but probably after FROOT.
Paste: Are there any specific artists who have influenced your style?
Diamandis: Well, I like PJ Harvey, and I love Shirley Manson from Garbage. It’s generally a lot of kind of alternative female groups or fronted bands who kind of make their own, I guess.
Paste: You’ve been touring a lot with the new album. How does touring influence your style?
Diamandis: I think it probably gets wilder on tour because you can get away with so much more. It’s kind of that complete switch between your normal day clothes, you know. And, on show days, you do promo where you can wear something really fun and very creative.
Paste: Do you have any favorite stores to visit when you’re touring?
Diamandis: America is a gold mine of thrift, so I do love going to LA and going to thrift stores there. To be honest, I don’t shop that much on tour because you’re always carrying out so much, and you don’t really want to buy anything else to weigh you down, but, yeah, I love thrift stores.
Paste: What’s your favorite part of thrifting?
Diamandis: It’s the hunt [laughs]. I love the market on Sunday—I think it’s on Fairfax in LA. It’s so cool, you can get so many major bargains. It’s finding an amazing item, for sure.
Paste: Do you have a favorite piece in your closet right now?
Diamandis: I’ve got these customized headbands made by a milliner in London called Piers Atkinson. I’ve got one that’s giant—kind of surreal, furry and very glittery. The other one is a fruit, like the utter word, and kind of holographic. He makes all the stuff for tour, and he’s going to make a neon one soon. I’m rocking one of his headbands at the moment, that’s my favorite thing.
Paste: Do you have any beauty essentials?
Diamandis: Coconut oil! It’s really the most malleable beauty product ever because you can use it as moisturizer, as kind of a defrizzer for your hair, for nails—it’s amazing. It’s one thing I always carry around with me everywhere.
Paste: How would you sum up your personal style in a sentence?
Diamandis: That’s hard [laughs], definitely something surreal and ‘70s at the moment.