Style Icon: Jenny Lewis

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From ModCloth Writing Team Intern, Amy Cockcroft:

There are many reasons why I am totally in love with Jenny Lewis. She is beautiful, talented, stylish, alluring; all these things combine dexterously to make her whole persona effortlessly captivating.  Most famous for being a singer-songwriter from LA, Jenny has done every other showbiz thing in between, and she’s seemingly done it all with an ease to be envied. Her vintage, retro-inspired style is enticing and enthralling. It boasts a modesty that doesn’t scream superstar, but rather the kind of look that we as ModCloth followers are striving for everyday.

Continue reading to learn what makes Jenny Lewis a style icon.



First and foremost, I adore Jenny’s music, and she’s perhaps most famous for her indie band, Rilo Kiley. Jenny Lewis has always been a trendsetter, and the picture above shows the cheeky retro style that is her trademark. The quirky band image finds its foundations in her fashion, and her dazzling stripy dress in this image is combined with statement-making knee-high socks, creating an absolutely gorgeous, boisterous ensemble. Rilo Kiley’s music is pretty and elegant, and launched me into many an internal philosophical debate when I heard the lyrics at the tender age of 15. For example in the song “More Adventurous” she sings, “I read with every broken heart you should become more adventurous.” Incidentally, I first heard this song around the time I first got my heart broken, which resulted in my getting my ears pierced six more times. I’m not so sure this can be counted as adventurous, but still, those lyrics definitely made me realize a few things about how life works. The album More Adventurous spoke to me, and although it was the third record for the band, it was probably where they achieved most recognition.


It isn’t just with Rilo Kiley that Jenny Lewis has made her musical mark, and it is her charming and calming voice that makes her such a sought after artist. Among many other notable awesome indie and alternative bands, she has contributed vocals to music by The Postal Service and Bright Eyes. In 2006, Jenny Lewis released her solo debut album, Rabbit Fur Coat, recorded with The Watson Twins. The picture above shows the artists together, and her move from cute music to a somber, more serious style is reflected in her sophisticated dress while still maintaining the indie alternative style that reflects her personality so aptly. The album was bought for me as a present, and it took me to a calm place where it was okay to be bitter, cynical, and reflective, though in a completely different way to the brooding that Alanis Morrissette’s music took me to. It is an eclectic mix of folk, country, alternative and soul, and it has a chimerical way that relaxes and soothes its audience. It is in this album that Jenny told us, “You are what you love and not what loves you back.” I love her, and if that means we share any of the same attributes, then I am very happy about that indeed.


Jenny Lewis was a child star, featuring in commericals, TV shows, and films. Yet her past hasn’t dictated her future, and the two facets of her being are completely separate. In fact, I had no idea she even had such a showbiz history when I set out to write this post, and because of my research, watching “Troop Beverly Hills” is now at the top of my must-see movie list! The picture above can be described simply as retro – she may not have been the style icon we know and adore today, but she certainly was a cutie!

I love to see one of my favorite stars appreciating another of my favorites stars. It’s like a calm and harmonious cycle that should not be broken. In this pic above, Jenny Lewis is donning an everyday casual look while advertising her new album Acid Tongue. Her handsome hat and gorgeous high-waisted jeans make for a folksy and nonchalant style, and teamed with a printed Bob Dylan T-shirt, she gets a flawless and adorable look!


In this image, Jenny looks so sweet and shows us how to wear that floral summer print dress perfectly. Looking happy and comfortable is the key, and with that smile the sun will be shining on. It is this kind of look that makes Jenny Lewis such an engaging being, confirming her status as the ultimate girl next door style icon. It may seem a bit anticlimactic, but it’s what she does best!

What do you think of Jenny’s style? Which celebrities inspire you?!

26 Responses to Style Icon: Jenny Lewis

  1. Nicole C. 08/06/2009 at 12:32 pm #

    I’m totally inspired by Jenny Lewis’s style and music. Portions for Foxes was my anthem for my junior year of high school, it was incredible, she’s so talented!
    I’m also inspired by zooey deschanel I suppose, but I’m still not brave enough to dress quite like either of these two incredible ladies yet!

  2. Kat 08/06/2009 at 12:33 pm #

    I LOVE THIS WOMAN.
    She is amazing, and she is very fashionable, she really inspires me. And she has such a presence about her; I really saw that when I saw Rilo Kiley live.

  3. Julie 08/06/2009 at 12:59 pm #

    I was listening to under the blacklight just the other day :)

  4. Jasmine 08/06/2009 at 1:15 pm #

    I love her style. I listen to her occasionally. I really like “Portions for Foxes”.

    I’m inspired by Zooey Deschanel and Regina Spektor

  5. Robin 08/06/2009 at 1:20 pm #

    I absolutely adore Jenny Lewis.
    Her style is impeccable.

    I think out of today’s celebrity style that inspire me I’d have to go with the gorgeous Dita Von Teese.

  6. Mary 08/06/2009 at 2:22 pm #

    I was her for celebrity day at school, yet no one knew who I was.

  7. isabella 08/06/2009 at 3:03 pm #

    That first picture of her reminds me of Desperate Housewives.

    Haha, she’s incredible!

  8. Amy 08/06/2009 at 3:24 pm #

    You haven’t seen Troop Beverly Hills? Shame… Better check out The Wizard while you’re at it.

    She is the only adult I know who looks cute in overalls. And another cool style note- that “Dylan” shirt she’s wearing was adapted into a similar style “Jenny” shirt for sale on her tour and website.

  9. Amy 08/06/2009 at 5:36 pm #

    Thanks for your comments everyone! I totally love her style, and am glad you all agree.
    Amy, I hadn’t even heard of Troop Beverly Hills until I started writing! Nobody in the office could believe it either. And The Wizard?? what’s that??!!

    We’re huge fans of Zooey Deschanel here too! In fact, our own stylist Vasil taught us all how to get her look, check it out: http://modcloth.wpengine.com/2009-03-26-get-that-look-zooey-deschanel
    Thanks for your responses again guys. And keep the suggestions for icons coming in! After all, you are our inspirations!
    :) x

  10. Ann 08/06/2009 at 6:03 pm #

    I love her & was so happy to see this post on her :) I just saw her in concert last month and she was fantastic, as expected. Please do a “How to get her look” modcloth style for Jenny!

  11. Johanna 08/06/2009 at 6:42 pm #

    The Wizard was such a wonderful movie! At least when I saw it as a kid. I have yet to find it at blockbuster.

    I love this chick though, she’s one of the main reasons I dyed my haird red back in school. :-)

  12. Mallory 08/06/2009 at 7:16 pm #

    she is my favorite singer ever ever ever. i saw her perform in june & i couldn’t even contain my joy. she was wearing wide leg retro-style jeans and a black t-shirt with some sparkly stripes – but she made something so simple look amazing.

  13. Amy 08/06/2009 at 7:21 pm #

    I love her style. She is beautiful, talented, and seems to be able to wear anything and look great. Plus, I love redheads, haha.

    I don’t know what Rilo Kiley was thinking with Under the Blacklight, though. Pretty terrible album in my opinion.

  14. Jacky 08/06/2009 at 7:22 pm #

    Jenny has such an amazing voice and I love her style =) I’m glad to see this up here.

  15. Charlene 08/06/2009 at 7:30 pm #

    I’ve actually never heard of her before this, but what a breezy indie style! I dig it. :D

    PS: Is it just me, or does Jenny Lewis look vaguely like Anna Friel (Chuck from Pushing Daisies) in the balloon picture?

    • chris 11/11/2010 at 7:41 pm #

      they look a lot alike

  16. Nicole 08/06/2009 at 8:51 pm #

    WOW.
    You know I must admit that I’ve never heard of Jenny before, but I’m glad that I have! After reading about her I cant wait to download her music and watch her style more closely :) I just love a girl who likes to style herself in a girlish European feminine way!

  17. Steph 08/07/2009 at 2:33 am #

    Thanks for featuring Jenny Lewis! I saw her at Bonnaroo and she was AMAZING!

  18. Jenny 08/07/2009 at 3:50 am #

    She is really lovely. Whenever I catch a Rilo Kiley show I’m always surprised that somehow she’s even more adorable in person!

  19. Rebecca K. 08/07/2009 at 4:53 am #

    You should blog on more style icons. I enjoy reading them!

  20. Carrie 08/07/2009 at 6:07 am #

    Jenny Lewis is one of my fashion icons! He just played in Pittsburgh in July and was amazing! I’m excited to see her on here!

  21. Kristel 08/07/2009 at 7:56 am #

    I love her!!!
    She’s definitely my number one girl crush. I love her music and her style. I finally got to see her perform live a couple months ago and it was a dream come true.

  22. emilymargrit 08/08/2009 at 6:53 pm #

    Jenny Lewis has gotten more and more adorable as she has aged. I first saw her in 2004, I think, with Rilo Kiley, and I saw her solo supporting Acid Tongue last June. SHE IS SO CUTE AND TINY. Also for people who haven’t heard her before, I think Acid Tongue is a better album than Rabbit Fur Coat.

  23. Emma Hebert 08/08/2009 at 10:19 pm #

    I was so happy to see this post! I have seen Jenny Lewis in concert twice with Rilo Kiley and twice solo and each time I am struck by her ability to effortlessly connect with and charm the crowd, and by how very generous she is with her audience. I also am completely inspired by her style! She is, quite simply, a real rock star!

  24. Rachel Shatkin 08/09/2009 at 12:25 pm #

    Jenny Lewis is and always will be my musical heroine! She’s such an inspiration and she motivates me to be the best female musician i can be. Jenny Lewis, represent!

  25. designer bags 04/14/2010 at 4:14 am #

    I like Jenny Lewis very much.she is beautiful.and songs sound good.

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