May 28, 2015 • PEOPLE

Please Meet: Ruby Amanfu


Ruby Amanfu

Photo credit: Jean Francois Campos

I first met my friend Ruby Amanfu in Nashville on my birthday two years ago. A mutual friend kept saying, “You have to meet Ruby, not only is she the sweetest girl on Earth, but she also has the voice of an angel.”

Well, my friend was right on both accounts, but what she neglected to tell me is that Ruby is one heck of a good time too!

The night I met Ruby, a big group of us went to an amazing George Straight concert followed by several rounds of bowling. We had the best time and all became fast friends.

Since that first meeting, I have gotten to know Ruby even better. I admire her incredible talent (she has collaborated with some of the greatest musicians, Jack White anyone?) and she has amazing style.

The minute I saw her in a Draper James outfit, I jumped with joy—she looked so darn pretty! She is what I think of as a quintessential Southern gal.

I want you to get to know Ruby better too, so I sent her our Draper James Seven—seven questions that define a Southern style maker.

Read on to see what she had to say and keep your eyes (and ears!) open for her new album, Standing Still, due out this summer.

What is your favorite Southern city?
I’ve been to a lot of Southern cities, and I may be biased, but I’ve got to give it to Nashville. There’s a reason why so many people are migrating there.

Nashville is a city with that special something that I and other locals have known about all our lives. There’s no place like it.

Favorite Southern restaurant?
Monell’s in Nashville’s Germantown district. Pass to the left!

Favorite Southern tradition?
The acknowledgment of the existence of your fellow man when you walk down the street or pass a stranger in the aisle of a grocery store. It’s when a bus driver nods at the driver of a sedan, and the driver of the sedan nods back.

It’s a reflex for most of us that makes us feel connected to something bigger than ourselves.

Sweet tea or unsweetened?
Unsweetened. I’m sweet enough!

Cowboy boots or heels?
Heels…but always barefoot for dancing.

How do you describe Southern style?
I think Southern style is whatever makes you feel like you can conquer your world, depending on your specific path in life.

For instance, Southern street style is different from Southern corporate style. Styles may be varied, but they coexist. Nashville may not be New York, but you’ll see people living out loud with their own personal style here, too, and folks will often be far more comfortable doing so than in some other cities.

Also comfort is a big must in the South. Step outside in the middle of July to know why!

Describe your style.
My personal style is strong yet serene. I don’t wear clothes that make me look like my feathers could easily be ruffled, but I’ll be the first to wear ’em. Feathers, I mean. Oh, and ruffles.