I met Shenae Grimes last week during her fitting for Toronto’s Much Music Video Awards. Shenae plays good girl Annie Wilson on the new 90210, but any lusting after J Crew stops in Beverly Hills.
Grimes agreed when I said that her wholesome character reads “American Eagle,” but in person, Shenae is far from it. In an ensemble cast of varied styles, Shenae is lumped into Annie’s style category and is rarely, as she put it, “photographed like some of [her] cast mates.” This may sound like a complaint, but Shenae does not mind being outside of the spotlight – she has a lot going on, including producing a short film, art directing a fashion film for Fashion Television and writing for Nylon and Rebecca Minkhoff.
Watching Shenae, I got the impression that she is very particular about the clothes she wears. Like most actors, she has hired the services of a stylist, but rarely do they make the cut. “Clothing is a very personal attachment, so it is hard to entrust that with somebody else,” she said as we discussed the many stylists she has had in her employ.
I was really impressed with Grimes’ involvement with Canadian design. For the MMVA’s, she requested the aid of Toronto designer Amanda Lew Kee, whose darkly trendy creations are not fit for the demure. In the past, she has worked with resident bad boy, Evan Biddell. Conclusion? Grimes digs Canadian design.
[Exeunt] Annie Wilson, [Enter] Shenae Grimes
A nappa leather skirt gathers at the front for a pleated effect, drawing attention to a belted waist. A wrap belt is embellished with studs and is detachable – the piece looks sewn in, but can be removed, should you desire a less “punk rock” aesthetic. The bodice is sheer, with mesh-blocking to offer contrast to statement making peeks of skin. The look reads very 80s Madonna, or for those who may not know Madonna, a 2010 Christina Aguleira, or Gaga Alejandro. Trendy, just like Lew Kee.
A fitting is fascinating to watch. Chalk nips fabric to indicate any adjustments that need to be made, while Shenae, clipped in, considers a variety of accessories. Everything is an experiment – the dress itself may not have worked, but that is the nature of a fitting. Shenae wouldn’t be able to tell until she tried it on. Seeing the way she posed and considered with a curious half-smile, it was obvious that Lew Kee and Grimes were well matched.
Grimes says she does not have “much” Canadian design at the moment, but she intends to add more to her ever-growing closet. Given the company of Amanda Lew Kee and Evan Biddell, it is easy to see that she favours more experimental, statement-grabbing designs. With this year’s E Talk Style Award under her belt (awarded at the MMVAs), it is only a matter of time before people see little Annie Wilson as a style force to be reckoned with.