In public relations, image is everything.
So you might wonder about all the biker boots that share closet space with the other impressive pieces in the wardrobe of public-relations powerhouse Lisa Maas. As they know in the business, the best stories have a special twist. For her, that’s the boots.
As president of the Royal Oak-based Publicity Works, Inc., Maas is a woman about town. But the foundation of her confidence and image-building acumen begin in her closet. “What fashion can do best is let people know something about you, before you say anything about yourself,” Maas says.
As she explains, “If I have a good handle on my image, [it shows] I am ready to help [my clients] express what is unique about their business.”
She freely admits that she’s into basic black and more basic black.
She has totally caved to “the dark side. “I love [black clothing]. I don’t even fight it anymore.”
A look at her collection (photographed for Hour Detroit in her dream closet at The Fifth Royal Oak because her own space is under construction) reveals the penchant for biker chic. It’s a collection that’s mere fashion; Maas has a very real fear of riding or owning a motorcycle. Speaking like the image-maker that she is, Maas says she simply likes the look, particularly of biker boots, which she’s even worn with a long dress to a black-tie event.
The staple of her wardrobe is “really tailored pieces,” including “jackets, jackets, jackets,” which she says can really complete an outfit. Many of her wardrobe pieces are from Linda Dresner in Birmingham, where, she says, they have “amazing sales.” At Dresner, she buys Thomas Wylde, because, she says, his clothing has a “luxurious biker feel.” For other labels — such as Balenciaga — she shops at Barneys.
The thrill of the hunt also takes her to eBay where, she says, “I bought a really great pair of Lanvin pumps once for $60.” She also dabbles in eBay bidding for Chanel and Azzedine Alaia pieces.
That sort of savvy has prompted friends to seek her out as a “fashion therapist.” Her stock advice: Don’t get caught up in certain designers and trends.
“I always follow the trends,” she says, “but I am really selective. I think really good fashion transcends the test of time. There are certain designers and pieces that always look new and fresh, and that’s what I look for.”