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During the spring collections, Victoria Beckham took in the Polyphonic Spree at Oscar de la Renta, endured the two-hour wait at Marc Jacobs, watched models stride by a giant bow installation at Chanel and fawned over the naughty nurses at Louis Vuitton. Britain’s top fashion expat, now happily ensconced in Beverly Hills with her soccer-star husband, David, and their kids, Brooklyn, Romeo and Cruz, is clearly not a novice when it comes to fashion shows. Whether it’s New York, Paris or Milan, Beckham will trek to the edge of the city, fight her way to her seat and refuse to crack a smile for hordes of photographers desperate to get that winning shot.
Beckham is quickly becoming a part of the fashion firmament. Not only does she cheer on her favorite designers from the front row, she also manages her own lifestyle brand, dVb, which launched earlier this year with jeans and sunglasses, and now hopes to turn herself into a style guru with her own how-to guide, That Extra Half an Inch: Hair, Heels and Everything in Between, just published Stateside by Harper Entertainment.
“I love fashion and have been in a position where I have worked with the best hairdressers, makeup artists and designers in the world, and I wanted to share that,” explains Beckham, whose career as the Spice Girls’ Posh catapulted her into the spotlight more than a decade ago. “You don’t have to wear top-to-toe designer clothes. I wanted to give people tips on where to shop on the high street, or where to get that perfect pair of jeans according to your body shape. It’s everything that you need to know about style.”
Indeed, That Extra Half an Inch is aimed at women of all ages, shapes and budgets. It’s filled with Beckham quips-cum–fashion and lifestyle tips, from putting on the right stilettos to what to wear on ski slopes. “I am a girls’ girl, I am not the kind of girl that men put pictures up of on their wall, and this is a girls’ girl book,” she adds. “I am a real consumer, I know how girls want to look and feel.”
Beckham cites her mother, to whom the book is dedicated, for giving her the most memorable fashion tips, even though she chose to be a rebel of a daughter herself. “My mum gave me two pieces of fashion advice: Don’t eat beetroot because it stains, and don’t wear sideways stripes because they are unflattering,” she recalls. “For years, I wouldn’t go near sideways stripes. And then a few seasons ago, I thought, you know what, I love sideways stripes. I actually wore them on the cover of the American version of the book, and put in a little disclaimer to my mum, saying, ‘You told me not to wear sideways stripes and now I love them.’”
From slim jeans that serve to elongate the appearance of legs to oversize sunglasses to hide an early school-run for the kids, Beckham stays true to her own fashion tips with dVb. She is building its network of stores, adding Bergdorf Goodman, Maxfield and Net-a-porter next summer. “It’s not about getting to as many shops as possible,” she says. “My image is so out there, and people read about me, especially in Europe, virtually every day,” she admits. “I have to make sure my product is only available at specific stores, because if not, it would just be overkill.”
Beckham isn’t styling her bandmates for their final world tour, which kicks off in December. That assignment went to Roberto Cavalli, who is expected to create six to seven changes for each gig.