“I never thought of myself as a pretty girl,” Elle Dee confesses, perched upon a velvet sofa in her new favorite hip-hugging Rag & Bone jeans. Video-based wardrobe storyteller StyleLikeU prowls through Elle’s New York apartment, panning across bookshelves and clothing racks interchangeably, as the Brazilian D.J. and musician gets up to command the tour in her black studded ankle boots. A Chanel bag here, a Gucci tote there, Elle tells us about the provenance of her style sensibility, eventually flipping through a paradoxical closet of cheetah prints, hard leather motorcycle jackets, and soft feminine blouses as the pages of her own sartorial novel.

Cigarette smoke begins to waft through the air as Elle sorts through ripped and gloriously worn-through clothes, speaking on her metal (music) influence and black moments in dress inspired by Patti Smith. A devotee of black (though she admits trying to incorporate more color), deep, dark, decadent fur and velvet garments peek amongst the closet racks and a ubiquitous copy of “The Cabinet of Natural Curiosities” sits as a coffee table centerpiece alongside guitar picks.

Elle is a stylish raw beauty who enjoys retreating to the sanctuary of her apartment more than being seen at some pretentious party. Her inquisitiveness is evident in her proud collection of books, with everything from legendary fiction to the brainy How The Mind Works by Steven Pinker and the anthropological writings of Ruth Benedict. Insistent upon keeping her creative integrity intact, Elle stands sculpturesque in an Alaia dress with her delicate hands covered in mystical adornments by Pamela Love and monochromatic floral tattoos tumble from her shoulders to her elbows.

With sass and slight self-deprecation, Elle offers a mildly arguable critique on her body, resolving that, “You’ve gotta work with what you have,” since “People don’t believe it, but it is just as hard being the skinny girl, as it is the chubby one.” Despite this wholehearted sentiment, Elle may need to watch her back for the big girls on that one. One thing that isn’t arguable, however, is the absolute sexiness of Elle embracing her age. Her curious, chestnut-colored eyes beam with energy beneath her cropped bangs as she waxes poetic about the splendors of New York and professes, “The best part of life is getting older and getting wiser and having more experiences and more stories to tell.”