Spotlight On Toyah

We've all admired actress/singer TOYAH WILLCOX on screen and stage, so now's your chance to see her in a different light - as a model for our fashion pages! Toyah picked out all the clothes herself, using her own individual style to put them all together. Which, for Toyah, is just doing what comes naturally!

"Being small, I always look for clothes which make me look a bit taller," Toyah told us.

"For instance, I'd never choose anything with horizontal stripes which would make me look fatter than I am!

Smaller people do have a problem when it comes to buying clothes and I have to be very careful to make sure I go for darker colours, which tend to be more flattering."

Toyah likes to shop for her clothes in unusual, back-street shops.

"I prefer the not so well-known shops because I don't want to go somewhere and find someone else in exactly the same outfit," she told us.

Toyah is very interested in fashion and feels that it's very, very important.

"What you wear should reflect your own personal taste. I don't always believe in being told what to wear!

Clothes are a very big part of your individuality. You should feel good in what you wear. Above all, though, your clothes should be comfortable."

Toyah spends a lot of money on clothes now, particularly on her stage clothes, but she wasn't always in this position.

"When I was a drama student I couldn't afford many clothes, but I still really cared about what I dressed in.

I got all my clothes from places like jumble sales and the wardrobe department of the theatre!

If you don't have much money to spend on clothes, I think it's important to buy one outfit you really like, and wear it all the time - rather than buying lots of accessories and things.

When I was a drama student I used to go around in this long black coat and a pair of  heavy black platform shoes - I loved the outfit and wore it all the time!"

Toyah feels that her clothes are a very important part of her image. She's well known for appearing in some stunning stage outfits, but would hate to be predictable, which is why she likes using young, new designers.

Whereas before, she didn't feel that accessories were important if you haven't got a lot of money to spend on clothes, Toyah feels that the jewellery she wears on stage is an essential part of her look.

"On stage, the accessories are just as important as the outfit."

Judging by the selection that Toyah brought along to our photographic session, her own accessories are as individual and dramatic as the girl herself!

Finally, we asked her if there was anyone she admired for their clothes sense.

"James Dean and David Bowie. Bowie always looks so fantastic. Whereas so many of his generation have let their style slip or become dated, he's managed to stay up there.

Grace Jones is amazing - her style's really individual and unique.

Marilyn Monroe is someone who I think always looked good in clothes, too - although in her case, her fantastic figure made the clothes look good."

Which is something Toyah feels is important - but looking at the shots here, it just goes to show that personality counts for quite a lot too!

Jackie Magazine, 1981