Style Icon: Mother’s Day Edition

On Krista (left): Lola & Sophie 3-piece ensemble including long tank, dress and sheer jacket, all from Gus Mayer; Stuart Weitzman boots; Michael Kors watch; On Judy: Theia silk dress; Menbur shoes; gold jewelry from her mother’s collection.

Krista Conlin & mother Judy Jones

Written and styled by Tracy James   

Photographed by Chuck St. John


Like mother, like daughter. The old adage is plainly evident when in the presence of Judy Jones and her daughter, Krista Conlin, both vibrant women who are each stylish in their own rights.

With her fiery red hair and spirit to match, Jones, 67, embodies posh glamour, mixing without reservation luxe textures in jewel or earth tones. Conlin, 37, is the portrait of bohemian chic, reflecting her free spirit personality through her wardrobe choices which include flowing fabrics and gypsy skirts, all with a rocker edge.

Both mother and daughter can often be seen donning an incredible piece of jewelry once owned by Jones’s late mother, Virginia Collins, yet another generation of stylish maven.

Conlin’s grandmother traveled the world with her military husband, picking up unique accessories in every corner of the globe, including dramatic collars (so in trend last spring), stone-encrusted bangles (perfect for stacking on the wrist with other bracelets for a contemporary look), and dramatic statement necklaces (the kind that can wow when worn with all black). Unlike many who lock such heirlooms away, Jones and Conlin enjoy remembering Collins by wearing her remarkably fashion-forward finds on a regular basis.

Jones says that growing up as a military brat shaped her style leanings. “I remember wanting to wear the ‘in’ look,” she says. “I think it was partly because we moved very often and I had a need to fit in with the new people as easily and quickly as possible to make friends.” Jones notes that as she has aged, she has grown more confident in her own skin. “Now I don’t worry so much about other’s opinions. These days, I like to wear something different than the crowd and actually prefer standing out a bit,” she says. Conlin calls her mom “fearless” when it comes to color and commends her adeptness at combining old with new while staying on trend.

Echoing her mother’s sentiments, Conlin says she too has grown into her own skin over the years. She has loved fashion ever since she was a child, when she enjoyed a bedroom with a large closet where she would spend hours. Conlin loved observing her mother dress up for a night out. “Dressing in something fabulous was part of the event,” Conlin recalls. Fittingly, one of her favorite childhood activities was playing dress up for a pretend party. Today, as the owner of her own public relations firm, KC Projects, Conlin is always attending events and dressing appropriately for each one. Jones calls Conlin her “chameleon of style,” adding, “I know to expect the unexpected hen it comes to Krista’s style.”

Indeed, Krista has a style not common for Birmingham: “Stevie Nicks-esque,” she declares. Other style mentors include late 60s icon Talitha Getty, with her hippie prints, kaftans, and furs, and modern-day fashionistas Rachel Zoe and Sienna Miller. Jones admires Charlize Theron and Blythe Danner for their age-appropriate chicness. However, after spending time with this dynamic mother/daughter duo, it is obvious that their most influential style inspirations are each other.

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