As I was enjoying my perfectly warm English tea served on a very fine china set, Stephan Rabimov offers me Belgian chocolates from a tray while explaining that the dark ones are his favorites. As I listened to him talk about his morning errands, I looked around in his comfortable Upper West Side home and noticed in the décor a precise elegance where style and art are mixed together in a poetic, masculine way. I feel inspired to think that if “Doctor Zhivago” would have been filmed in New York, this would have been his home.
Stephan Rabimov was born in Russia, and he has been living on and off in Manhattan for the past 12 years. He is the founder, publisher and editor-in-chief of DEPESHA , a seven-year-old leading Russian language magazine at the intersection of fashion and arts. He is also a contributing executive fashion editor at San Francisco-based FourTwoNine magazine (published by Richard Klein), a new lifestyle magazine that highlights an ambitious and successful lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and ally (LGBTA) community and inspires the trailblazing instincts of its readers.
Although he travels all over the world promoting established and emerging designers, New York City is home to Stephan Rabimov, who lives in style, breathes and teaches a fashionable lifestyle — and is our choice for the November Style Master.
Gazelle Paulo: Stephan, please describe your style with your own words.
Stephan Rabimov: My style tends to go toward severe, brutal; however, with some elements of softness. I prefer clothes that are season-less and timeless in their appeal.
Do you have any peculiar fashion habits?
It is not so much as a fashion habit, but I tend to never finish my meals. I take long breaks between bites and most often than not, I don’t return to finishing my dish if I feel satisfied. It is a smart approach to healthy eating, and health is always in vogue.
How important has fashion and style been to you?
It is my livelihood.
What has the defining fashion moment in your life/career?
A few years ago, the Academy of Art University in San Francisco generously invited me to teach a masterclass at their globally famous the School of Fashion. I had the pleasure of being in the eclectic company of Sarah Burton, Simon Ungless, Philip Treacy, Cathy Horyn, Suzy Menkes and other amazing individuals for a number days. It was an honor and a dream come true meeting each fashion icon and getting to know the person behind the celebrity.
Who are the most elegant woman and man of all time?
Any woman dressed in Prabal Gurung or Peter Som and any man dressed in Alexandre Plokhov or Thom Browne would look elegant at any event.
Fashionably speaking, if you could have a second chance to giver another first impression, when and why?
My funeral. [Laughs]. It would be a personally styled final look.
What is your favorite store in the world and your favorite in New York City?
My favorite store in the world is Tinker Tailor online: It is the only resource that allows users to create made-to-measure fashion directly from the runways. In NYC, I always enjoy what Barneys has to offer.
What was the most spectacular party you attended?
Dr. Valerie Steele and Fred Dennis, renowned curators at the Museum at FIT best know how to put the most memorable fashion exhibition in the city. The museum at FIT opening receptions are always to be seen and be “the scene.” Recently, one of the best dinner parties I have attended was at the Baryshnikov Art Center’s Fall Gala — art never looked or tasted this good.
If you could style one person, who would be the lucky one?
Our future president, Mrs. Hillary Clinton.
What is the perfect attire for the eternal sleep?
All-black fireproof tuxedo … I am going to Hell.
October Style Master: Ellen Christine