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It’s hard to believe that Olivia Palermo is launching her first clothing line just now. After all the actress-turned-entrepreneur-turned-style-icon has been a fixture on the fashion scene for years sitting front row at some of the biggest shows and even counting among designers like the great Valentino Garavani among her friends. Palermo’s impeccable sense of style has also made her a favorite of street style photographers, not to mention her more than six million Instagram followers who adore her.
So we are extremely excited that her eponymous line is finally out and it’s just as chic as you would expect it to be. Palermo designed the 84-piece spring/summer collection with the finest materials and beautiful prints crafted in-house. She credits her own personal style as inspiration for it but also “the fabulous women in my life, whether family and friends or those that I observe in my travels.”
We recently caught up with Palermo and talked about all things travel and fashion.
Departures: What’s the city that has inspired you the most and why?
Olivia Palermo: "Probably Paris. I have spent so much time there and have great friends in the city, plus it has amazing antique markets.:
What is your favorite hotel to stay in?
"[It] depends on the city but probably the Park Hyatt in Milan for its location, the Peninsula in Paris for its spa [both American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts Properties], the Charlotte Street Hotel in London for its cozy atmosphere, and the Armani Hotel in Dubai [also an American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts Property] for its excellent service."
What is the one beauty item you never travel without?
"Phyto Clarifying Shampoo because it cleans your hair without stripping it of essential oils."
Can you curate an outfit for us that would be perfect for traveling?
"Leather pants are part of my travel uniform so the Perforated Leather Track Pant for sure. The Lace and Leather Convertible Moto Trench is perfect for traveling because of its versatility in that you can zip off the bottom panel to convert it from a trench coat to a short jacket. An effortless blouse like the Neck-Tie Blouse is comfortable but has the tie for some added style."
You have an impeccable sense of style. What was it like to design an entire collection from scratch? What was the biggest challenge?
"Being able to create exactly what you want to have available in your wardrobe to ultimately style and wear was one of the greatest rewards of building this collection. You get to start with an entirely clean slate.
I like to look at challenges as opportunities to learn but one of the biggest challenges for me is not being able to produce every single design that we come up within the design process."
Back in November, you wrote, “a person’s unique style is so closely linked to their personality”? So who is the Olivia Palermo woman that you designed this collection for?
"We designed this collection for everyone who wants to feel amazing and like the best version of themselves when they walk out of the house each day. The collection is meant to be timeless, a bit sporty, and always tailored and polished—characteristics that I feel a lot of different women, and even some men, can identify with."
What are your favorite pieces from the collection that you see yourself wearing all the time this spring?
"I couldn’t possibly pick favorites, but I do love a statement overcoat and a leather pant, especially for travel."