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COOL FACES OF BASTET NOIR: Meet Anna Cascarina, Fashion Editor & Stylist

COOL FACES OF BASTET NOIR: Meet Anna Cascarina, Fashion Editor & Stylist

With trends and styles passing by in the blink of an eye, the fashion industry holds a mirror to society’s ideals and aspirations. Yet, a disheartening reality still exists: age-based discrimination within the fashion industry continues to banish older individuals to the shadows, ignoring their potential to inspire, create, and redefine fashion. This subtle yet engrained bias, commonly referred to as ageism, has become an integral part of the industry, influencing how brands design, market, and cater to their audience. This bias tends to result in a glaring oversight: the exclusion of older individuals from the narrative of style and elegance. However, as the saying goes, with age comes wisdom, and it’s high time the fashion industry embraced the wisdom of diversity and representation. In this era of digital connectivity and cultural awakening, the tide is turning and the voices of consumers are rising to challenge the status quo and herald an era of change. One such voice is that of our latest Cool Face of Bastet Noir, Anna Cascarina. 

With an impressive career spanning over 25 years, Anna Cascarina stands as an icon in her own right. A distinguished fashion editor, stylist, and visionary content creator, Anna’s journey has been defined by her unwavering passion for style and her commitment to pushing boundaries. From editorial work in the 90s and 00s, to founding a kids magazine and later on pivoting into digital realms as a stylist, blogger and content creator, Anna’s journey is a real testament to her unparalleled dedication to fighting ageism in the realm of fashion, so keep on reading to find out more.

Anna Cascarina is wearing The Mary Trench Coat, custom-made for herAnna Cascarina is wearing The Mary Trench Coat, custom-made for her

Who is Anna Cascarina?

I am a fashion editor, stylist and content creator with over 25 years experience in the fashion industry. I also ran my own kids magazine for 5 years. I am married with two teenage daughters and live in leafy Hertfordshire. On Instagram I speak out about ageism and give lots of style advice using my wealth of experience and knowledge.

What’s your morning routine like?

I usually take it fairly slow in the mornings, I’m not a morning person! I get up and have decaf tea at about 7am and then go back to bed until I feel ready to face the day! After showering I slather my body with body oil. At the moment I’m loving the Weleda dry body oil. I then do my make-up and hair and make myself another tea. If I’m working from home I’ll usually put on something comfy and then head to the office which is at the bottom of our garden.

Anna Cascarina is wearing The Mary Trench Coat, custom-made for her

Anna Cascarina is wearing The Mary Trench Coat, custom-made for her

Your career in fashion is beyond impressive, with over 25 years worth of experience in styling and fashion editor positions, as well as founding your own kids magazine! What has been the most challenging aspect of this experience and do you feel it helped shape you into the person you are today?

It’s been a whirlwind and really exciting. Working for an editorial magazine in the 90s and early 2000’s was an incredible experience. Budgets were high and the fashion and beauty departments had a ball flying around the world shooting our fashion stories. It’s so different now so I’m grateful I had the chance to experience it then. I started my magazine when my children were younger as I became really obsessed with kids style. It ran for 5 years and was amazing, but really challenging as it was an independent magazine and I didn’t have a team of people to help me. I did it all myself, so going from a fashion editor to running a whole magazine was a huge learning curve and gave me new skills and resilience. As my children grew, I knew that I wanted to return to womenswear, so Instagram and a blog seemed the natural step. I quickly realized that social media was quite an ageist space and I wasn’t seeing myself reflected back, so I wanted to be that person that people could be inspired by when it comes to fashion as a 40 something woman. Fighting ageism is something that I am passionate about as it is the one ‘ism’ that isn’t really tackled when it comes to brand representation. I am constantly infuriated that my age group is constantly excluded even though we have the disposable income and amazing style. I am determined to keep the conversation going in the hope that one day it will change for the better.

As a brand that aims to change the status quo when it comes to sizing in fashion, we feel your initiative for inclusive styling for the everyday woman is applaudable. What prompted you to diverge from the standard fashion editor/stylist calling and tap into this instead?

I think because I live it. As a size 16 woman, which is incidentally the UK womens average size, I find it incredulous that many brands don’t cater for my size and above. It doesn’t make financial sense to me. Representation is getting better in the fashion space especially when it comes to fashion shows. But is this filtering down to the shop floors? I don’t believe so. I want my instagram to be inspiring for every woman, of all ages and sizes and my styling tips are there to help people make the most of their wardrobe and make considered purchases that will last. I hope my Instagram feed reads like a magazine with inspirational posts, style ideas and trend forecasts. That’s my aim.

Anna Cascarina is wearing The Mary Trench Coat, custom-made for herAnna Cascarina is wearing The Mary Trench Coat, custom-made for her

Three things you wish you knew before starting out?

That it was going to be a hard slog. I might have become a vet if i’d known!!!

That fashion editing isn’t glamorous. It’s hard work, a lot of running around and late nights.

That there will be highs and lows and that it will be ok. Life throws curveballs but it doesn’t have to be as devastating as you might think. Everything will be ok and work out in the end. Just trust the process and lean into it.

Biggest setback in life and what you’ve learned from it?

Being made redundant when I was 4 months pregnant was a huge setback for me. No one wanted to employ a pregnant woman so I was forced to do freelance styling. With a newborn baby and no help around me, it was a real struggle to build up a freelance career. It was one of the reasons I went into teaching fashion as it was more flexible around the kids. I’ve learned to adapt and to not rest on my laurels. I’ve also learnt that pivoting can bring many rewards and new opportunities. 

Anna Cascarina is wearing The Mary Trench Coat, custom-made for her Anna Cascarina is wearing The Mary Trench Coat, custom-made for her

Books that changed your life

Oh gosh, I find these sorts of questions so hard to answer as there’s so many books that I’ve read and loved. But one that springs to mind is Atomic Habits by James Clear. A book that helped me make small changes to create good habits and break bad ones.

Favorite female empowerment speech

“You don’t have to be pretty. You don’t owe prettiness to anyone. Not to your boyfriend/spouse/partner, not to your co-workers, especially not to random men on the street. You don’t owe it to your mother, you don’t owe it to your children, you don’t owe it to civilization in general. Prettiness is not a rent you pay for occupying a space marked ‘female.” — Erin McKean

What’s in your Bastet Noir cart?

I love the Jutu Set and the Mary Trench. Both items are so easy to wear and would work as all year round wardrobe pieces. I also love the Psame Dress as it can be worn back to front to give you multiple options to wear.

If you liked Anna’s story, there’s plenty more to come! Just hit that sign up button to get in our inner circle of coolness and shop ethical and eco-friendly dresses.

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