Style Idol: Marissa Webb

The former head women’s designer at J.Crew, Marissa Webb has gone off on her own and launched a fabulous eponymous line.  She just had her Fall 2014 runway show at MBFW (see it here) and is quickly becoming a name (and brand) to reckon with.  Her biggest marketing tool? Herself. The woman’s style and manner of dressing is FLAWLESS.  Her tomboy chic look is Parisian yet American, glamorous yet laid back.  It’s classic and streamlined yet interesting and funky.  She may just be my new style icon (plus I follow her in Instagram and she’s as obsessed with her dogs as I am!)

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Get Marissa’s Look With This Formula:


Blouses: 1. // 2. // 3. (men’s shirt- try in slim fit!) (P.S. oh, also this one!)

Blazers: 1. // 2. // 3.

Skinny Jeans: 1. // 2. (Old Navy- cheap and fit GREAT!) // 3.

Accessories: 1. // 2. // 3. // 4. // 5. // 6.


  1. She has great style, true, but I feel like all these style icons that are profiled (not just by your blog) are always scary-thin. I know you are sensitive to this and I have no idea of course what this woman’s health story is, but people look at these images regardless. The looking at them makes me feel weird about myself, and I’m a grown-ass woman and mother to a little girl. I’m getting more negative out of this than positive. Yes they are not “real” people and models, but I just don’t want to go there anymore. You know what I mean?

  2. The clothes are great and I totally dig her style. However, I find Ms. Webb’s rail thin body hard to look at.

  3. I have to agree with both above comments. Her body is not THAT different from the advertisement you posted about a week ago. All those clothes would look just as good if she were 10-20lbs heavier.

  4. Yes she is incredibly thin, maybe just naturally so, I honestly was just focusing on her clothing style. Perhaps I should have thought more about it.

  5. Hi Erin, Always LOVE your Fashion Friday posts!

    FYI – Your accessories #6 does not have a hyperlink attached.

  6. I have to agree with others – while I totally love her style, (and appreciate you sharing her story with us),she is painfully thin. Like, seriously hard to look at thin.

  7. Loving her style, thank you for sharing Erin. As far as her being thin, some people are just born with those genetics. Not going to bash her or you for that.

  8. Was just going to add to the scary thin comments. She does have cool style but with a bit more weight and some boobs those outfits wouldn’t be as fashion forward. I’ve tried, it just doesn’t work.

  9. I honestly can’t judge whether she’s that thin or not but what I noticed is that, yes, she has great style, but it’s not something new or fresh. I feel like I’ve seen it all before.

  10. I would like more diversity in style icons, but I also hate it when people are constantly criticizing skinny people. We should be promoting healthy living and never mentioning a person’s size. My mom is naturally extremely thin and people have slammed her for being too skinny her entire life, saying hurtful things just because she is thin so she hated her body and wished she could gain weight.

    As women we should NEVER look at another woman’s body and criticize her. The only time we should be focusing on size is to talk about promoting healthy living for our younger (and older) generations. That way, we are all at our optimum weights and able to enjoy life to the fullest.

  11. Love her style! I pinned an outfit of hers a few years ago when she was with J. Crew and I drooled over it for months.

  12. I’m going to agree with the majority of the other ladies here. Its hard for me to look at the clothes when I see the woman wearing them looks very unhealthy even to the point of painful. It also concerns me that one minute there’s a very heavy conversation about the fashion industry models and how there needs to be change and then the next promoting this woman’s fashion who has a very similar body style. It’s very confusing.

  13. Y’all–She’s ASIAN. She’s got a different body type. When I visited Japan my normal US size 2 was trying on XL or XXL sized clothing. Yes, she’s thin but the odds of her having hips or being busty are probably not in her genetic cards. And only a boob job, not a burger are going to change the distribution of her body fat.

    I’ve liked her style from her days at JCrew. Thanks for featuring diversity in beauty, Erin.

  14. She has great style. She also looks like she’s really hungry. In my opinion, she looks best in the button up/blazer and boyfriend jeans – the only images where you can’t see her legs and/or sternum.

  15. OMG, totally agree with Marie! She’s is Asian and her style (what post was about) is amazing.
    You can tell by her petite silhouette and bone structure that she is naturally tiny. Give me a break, not everybody that is super thin has an eating disorder. Focus on her ability to put a look together and stop being so judgmental. This is coming from a naturally super thin 5 foot 11 girl who loves burgers and no matter how many I eat, my sternum will ALWAYS be visible.

  16. Saint Laurent is a global fashion company that sets both global trends and beauty standards, Marissa Webb is a private individual. Yes, she’s famous. Yes, she’s admired for her style. But her personal choices don’t set industry standards.

    When we say things like “she looks hungry,” we’re projecting. Enough with the fat AND thin shaming. Erin used her as a example of personal style which is not the same as critiquing a global brand’s ad campaign. Be kind, y’all. It looks good on everyone.

  17. Bravo, Marie! And also Carly and Tricia. Marissa Webb looks great and her style compliments her body type. I wish women would stop hating on those who are thin. We are “real”, and we are healthy, and rude comments are hurtful. Thanks for the post, Erin. Love your blog! :)

  18. I suppose beauty is in the eye of the beholder. As a naturally skinny Asian, I love the fact that I my sternum shows and I have rail thin legs. For me, clothes just hang so much better. On the other hand, I’ve also been told by well-intentioned friends that I’m too skinny. Well, I disagree. I AM happy and comfortable with what I have. Isn’t that what it’s all about?

  19. Her style is amazing, but personally I don’t feel qualified to examine her health history or body mass index. I’m not really sure why everyone else does…

    I have friends (most of whom are Asians, though all Asians are not naturally thin) who try tirelessly to gain weight by eating big portions and protein powder–they just cannot. You need a little more information than photographs to make judgment calls about who does and who doesn’t need to “eat a cheeseburger”. And by the way, can we retire that phrase, its super gross.

  20. Erin – I agree. I LOVE her style. I look forward to these fashion posts every Friday. Thanks for the inspiration!

  21. Hi Erin, Love her style. Yes, she is a rail, but the style is what you’re focusing on here! I love that shirts are back! She wears them so well, and accessorizes in such a laid back, yet glamorous way. Thanks for sharing,

  22. I have two things to weigh in on. First I am naturally thin and my whole life people have raised eyebrows at me and made me feel uncomfortable and almost apologetic about my body. Everyone in my family is rail thin and we are healthy italians who love food and eat well. Why is it rude to comment on an overweight persons body but just fine to slam and criticize naturally thin people who eat and live a healthful life.

    What I actually meant to comment on was J. Crew’s recent seasons movement towards basics and tomboy style. Does anyone else feel that J. Crew is moving away from a more fashion forward style and back towards a more safe boring (in my humble opinion) tomboy look. My recent Style Guides have left me feeling a little uninspired specifically December, January, and February. I wondered if the loss of this style diva you featured has anything to do with the shift in their current lines…
    I have read a few comments online that some J. Crew customers had been complaining about the new fashion forward lines to the likes of Mickey Drexler and that he promised to tone down the lines to more basic “WEARABLE” items. Boo hoo. Anyone else noticed this shift in direction or is it just me?

  23. I don’t know why I’ve never heard of her, but thank you for the introduction! I will def start cyber stalking her :)

  24. I have to side with a lot of the ladies as do tend to post women that are quite on the skeletal side. Yes, she’s Asian…but not all Asians are that thin…She does have a knack for mixing different styles..I do like that…but the woman needs some meat on her bones…I am a bit horrified.

  25. Very thin lady with an elegant and very nice style. She is actually beautiful and we shouldn’t judge her based on her thinness. Just as some ladies are bigger naturally, some are thinner naturally.

  26. I like this blog quite a bit, but (discussions of typical body size for racial background notwithstanding), I agree that it is very confusing to post one day about a skeletal model in a magazine which we should all be horrified by, and shortly thereafter post pictures of a similar woman whose look and body we are supposed to admire. Again, does it make a difference whether Marissa Webb or the Gucci model is starving herself to be that thin or not if the effect on the reader is the same? I feel like there is a line that the Gucci model crossed, and Marissa Webb is right up against that line. So for the commenter who advocated against fat and thin-shaming, is the answer to say nothing about any images of women’s bodies for fear that it might be perceived as ‘shaming’ of some sort?

    In the end, I think holding up Marissa Webb’s style–and by extension, her body as it is portrayed in this post, as an example for us to follow is the wrong message to send.

  27. I don’t think there is ever a situation where we should be talking about another woman’s body negatively! Stating that a professional woman is “disgusting” and “needs to eat a cheeseburger” will never actually promote any change and further puts women into the spiral of comparing their bodies to others.

    Do I think Gucci crossed a line? Definitely. Would I prefer that we were showing girls strong healthy bodies like Elena Hight or Clair Bevilacqua in advertising? Absolutely! But by promoting only one body type (regardless of what that one type is) we are continuing to promote the idea that a girl’s weight defines her. We should be teaching our young girls that their value isn’t defined by what number they see on a scale but what they can achieve whether they decide to be a CEO, professional athlete, scientist or stay-at-home mom.

  28. While I understand completely the argument against this post after the post I did about the Saint Laurent (not Gucci) campaign, I have to say I am a bit bothered by a lot of these comments. A disturbing international ad campaign from a major fashion label and a real person are very different things. And this post was about style, not weight. I enjoy posting about fashion, and unfortunately, most high fashion and even mainstream retail imagery is of very thin women. I can’t post about fashion without images, and those are the images provided from the fashion industry. THAT was what my post on the YSL ad was about, not that the model herself was/is anorexic- we can’t blame the models, we can blame the companies. And we CERTAINLY should not be shaming real people like Marissa Webb for her body, which may be just how she was born.

  29. I must agree that her alarmingly pronounced cheekbones and extremely thin legs (even in photography)suggests she does not consume a healthy diet.

    To Tricia’s comment above, I do feel it’s appropriate to call out a woman’s figure when her appearance is depicted as’ ideal’ or something to which we should aspire. If those of us disagree, we can express our opinions–that’s the point of a blog.

  30. Erin, My comment was not to shame anyone. Many women strive to be this thin and would take my comment as compliment. I am thinking of a friend of mine who looks just like the model that the you posted, identical build in fact! Her family is very worried about her although she loves the way she looks. When she sees a post like this, her argument that she is “the perfect size” is confirmed in her mind. Not only is her family worried about her poor nutrition, but her doctor is too. This is why the post grabbed my attention. I agree with Stephanie. The point of a blog is to generate discussion. Hence all the feedback on this post.

  31. Erin – Please don’t stop posting about your fashion picks and inspiration. I have definitely found clothes and accessories on this blog that I would of otherwise never heard about. Honestly, I just see the clothes and personal style of Marissa Webb, someone who inspires me as well. Fashion is supposed to be fun! Sometimes it’s hard to to realize how many readers love your blog when you get some negative reaction. Your Saint Laurent post was meant to generate discussion, and I’m sure you knew there would be many comments, both good and bad. But this post is about the clothes…completely different. Hang in there…you are appreciated in more ways than you can know :)

  32. I too agree that she looks extremely thin. With that said, these looks would not look good on an average sized woman. They look good on her and her body type. A woman above a size 6 or 8 would not wear these clothes well because layering tends to add bulk. She also usually has too many buttons undone or all of the buttons buttoned which looks quite bad/tacky on someone with a bigger bust. I agree she has great style but I think her style suits her.

  33. My sister in law is Chinese. She is THIS thin. However, she achieves this by literally eating almost nothing. She is older now (60 by now)married to one of my older brothers and she has the face of a thirty five year old and a body of a twenty five year old. She also cooks like crazy for my brother and his family. It is truly baffling how she does this, eating such a small, small amount. I love my sister in law but she is incredibly vain. It takes her at least an hour and a half to get ready for any major event. I stopped doing that when I turned 25! However, more power to her. She seems fine health wise and looks amazing. Who knows if this is right or wrong…

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  35. Lets not just assume that because she is Asian that she is naturally this thin. I am asian myself, and grew up in Asia. Yes, we are generally smaller. But a lot of it is also due to diets. A lot of them won’t eat carbs, or just eat very tiny meals, or just have fruits/veg as meals. And i don’t mean a “normal” salad.

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