MMVA Style Q&A: Fefe Dobson

The MMVA-winning singer tells us about her love of vintage finds, accessible fashion and more

Fefe Dobson Red Carpet

Photo by George

FeFe Dobson Backstage

Photo by George Pimentel

Fefe Dobson Performance

Photo by George Pimentel

The past year has been a comeback of sorts for Scarborough-born singer Fefe Dobson. The 2006 follow-up album to her successful (like, toured with Justin Timberlake successful) 2003 self-titled debut went unreleased, and Dobson went back to the well, releasing Joy, a record full of catchy pop rock tracks, this past November. (Just try to get the chorus of “Stuttering” out of your head.) The videos for the first two singles, “Ghost” and “Stuttering”, garnered her four nominations at last night’s MuchMusic Video Awards—the latter took home the fan favourite prize of UR Fave Video. Dobson, who splits her time between Toronto and Los Angeles, has also been exploring film and TV work. She just finished shooting a role in the upcoming flick Christmas in Compton and played herself in an episode of the CW network’s cheerleader Hellcats.

We sat down with Dobson, on a break from Friday’s MMVAs rehearsals to talk on all things style. Taking her cues from ’70s rock icons like Stevie Nicks, the singer arrived for our interview in a fringed, black mesh top from H&M, denim cut-offs and high-high booties from her favourite shoe label, Jeffrey Campbell. A vintage lover who scours flea markets for finds, she topped off her look with a flat-top black hat she picked up in Toronto’s Kensington Market. Along with her vintage finds, she packs her closet with black leather pieces, lots of scarves and skinny jeans, as well as multiple pairs of cowboy boots. (“You’ve got to wear them till they break,” she says.) Here’s what she had to say about her MMVAs looks, beauty favourites and having her teenaged style choices on the internet.

On her looks for the MMVAs:
“They’re designed by a good friend of mine. I’ve known her for many years, she’s part of my family, part of my management family. Her name is Heather Lawton and she did her first fashion week [at the Fall 2011 Toronto Fashion Week]. It was a hit for her and I just love her style.”

On her costume changes:
“That’s my only moment to really be able to do the costume changing thing, so I think, why not? And every element has a different vibe. The red carpet has a different vibe from the performing, the performing has a different element than the simple plan performance. I have to have different outfits.”

On bringing accessible fashion to her videos:
“[“Ghost” and “Stuttering” were] styled by Charlene Roxborough. She’s so cool and she pulls from a lot of great sources and has great relationships with a lot of people in high fashion but also with H&M. To me it was very important to incorporate high fashion but also incorporate the world where people can go in and get it themselves.”

Her style inspirations:
“I’m very influenced by ’60s and ’70s rock and roll and the ’90s grunge era. But really ’70s rock and roll. I love Stevie Nicks, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, I even get influence from Jim Morrison.”

Current beauty favourites:
“I just bought a M.A.C lipstick, Film Noir. It’s a very rich colour, almost plum and black. It’s very beautiful. I might rock that during the show or the after party. And I love Spice lip pencil from M.A.C. Oh, and I just got the Benefit eyebrow kit. They’re the best eyebrows I’ve ever done!”

On having her past style choices on the Internet:
“The Internet doesn’t lie, that’s for sure. There are a lot of things on there that I look back on and I think, really Fe? At the end of the day, we all go through it, we all try to figure out who we are. Lipsticks that don’t work, hairstyles that just don’t look good. Just for me it got put on the internet, so I can’t get rid of it.”

We also caught Fefe backstage at the MMVAs and asked her whether she’d ever do a clothing line:
“I would love to [collaborate with a designer on a fashion line]. Sometimes I can’t find what I’m looking for and I have specific ideas of what I want to wear. And sometimes I can’t fit into certain things because I’ve got a little booty and some legs.”

Check out our 10 favourite looks from last night’s MMVAs

Check out Fefe’s videos for “Ghost” and “Stuttering”